Wednesday, January 22, 2014

The Doctor Appointment

Last Friday the receptionist at the pediatric behaviorist's office called. I was over the moon when she said there was a cancellation and they could move us up to this Wednesday. I tried to not let it overshadow Natalie's birthday so I didn't talk about it much.

This morning I felt like I could throw up as we were getting ready. I was just nervous for some reason. Not really nervous of what his thoughts would be. I was nervous if we were making the right decision. Were we being over the top? When I say "we" I mean "me."

Molly did great. She wasn't that shy with him. She played with the toys and made eye contact. He asked us a lot of questions and then pulled out a table and they played some games and she did all the things she asked. She warmed up with only a few moments of being shy. She missed a couple of the questions, but she was placed at a 31 month level and even for language. Which First Steps put her at 21 months so that's confusing. Anyway.

He asked me if she was in daycare or preschool. I said no and proudly told him about our classroom and all the stuff we do in it. Maybe I was wanting a pat on the back? Who knows. He asked how often we did it and I told him three days two hours each. I expressed concern that she wasn't picking up letters, numbers, colors but that she seems so quick to learn and is so independent.

She is not autistic. He doesn't give diagnosis on sensory processing, but did recommend some OT and said he would write us a request if they required it. These are his thoughts.

Quit the classroom. Play. During the exam she turned back to us to wave an smile after every test. Of course like most kids she is saying "hey look at me guys! look what I just did!" His concern is her Pica relating to anxiety and perfectionism associated with OCD. A cause for Pica. Not that she has OCD. I think she's too young to tell that. I can't think of a way that she is a perfectionist. He asked if she was, but what can she perfect? Her block tower?

He told us kids only need to know one color by the time they are three. Well shit.

I don't feel like I put an insane amount of pressure on her, but maybe I do? Maybe it's the times. Everyone is striving for perfection now that we are all out for the whole world to see. You can't get on social media without seeing the genius of your fellow friends children. Then you sit there and think well crap my kid can't xyz. Then you log off and say hey honey lets count to 20! Did I fall for it? Probably.

Molly is a smart girl. They all are in their own right. She is a problem solver. We can't pull anything over her. If we say no she'll find a way to do it herself. She can count "1,2,1,2,1,2" and at some point it will actually be an item that is blue and she is right. And that's ok. I'm going to do what he said. I'm going to step back and let learning be an experience in her daily life. I'm going to ooh and aww over it and when she's wrong I'm not going to stand there saying "noooo… it's"

She's looking to me for reassurance. Maybe the pressure comes from us wanting the best behaved kid in the room. The kid with the most to brag about on Facebook. The kid that has the mom that is always on time and everyone always looks presentable. The Pinterest mom has to have one well behaved kid to pull off that stuff without the house burning down.

He gave us several recommendations on OT's in the area. He wants us to be referred to this Doctor at the children's hospital who will know more about dealing with her Pica exclusively. He gave recommendations on some psychologists. I don't know if we are there yet. It seems a bit much at this point, but I don't know.

He assured me it was smart to come in. He did see her toe walking and hand gestures. He said some kids just have a typical behaviors or quirks.

He also gave some book recommendations that I want to read.

For learning:

Einstein Never Used Flashcards: How Our Children Really Learn-and Why They Need to Play More and Memorize Less

For communication:

How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk

For sensory:

The Out-of-Sync Child

Raising a Sensory Smart Child: The Definitive Handbook for Helping Your Child with Sensory Processing Issues

So are game plan is to have fun and loosen up. Read the books. Get a referral to the specialist at the children's hospital. Get the rest of the sensory items like a weighted blanket etc that has been recommended.


  1. This doctor seems very well educated on child development! The book recommendations are excellent! I think every mom can relate to what you described- it's easy to get caught up in comparing and hard to stop thinking "we should be doing more". Someone shared something with me that helps me when I get caught up in the vicious cycle of mommy guilt. Typical development allows for infants to start walking anywhere from nine to around 18 months. This is a HUGE range of time and it is normal for an infant/toddler to start walking at any month in this range. Children learn to read (typically) anywhere between the ages of three to ten. That's a range of seven years that is consisted "normal" in child development. Children who walk, read or hit any milestone "early" aren't any better than a child who starts later. An early reader will not necessarily be a "better" reader. Everyone develops at their own pace. There is no need to rush. I don't see anything wrong with your homeschooling, with the exception of you pressuring yourself. Play together, do activities together- not to "get the right answers" but for the mere experiences and conversations. I have no doubt that Molly and Natalie are/ and will be well educated and knowledgeable. It won't be because of worksheets and things they learn in their toddler years but for the experiences you provide them every day. You are doing a great job. Trust yourself and trust your girls.

  2. You are exactly right. I agree. He was a great doctor. Adam is so high stress. His anxiety shoots out of control so quickly. Which may be her. The pressure we put on ourselves and then on our kids as a result can be so much these days. It's easy to get caught up. I don't know that that is the root of her problem. Maybe it is and maybe it isn't, but it was definitely a wake up call. This year will bring a lot of changes in the right direction.