Sunday, April 12, 2015

Latest and Greatest

There isn't must to report on because services haven't really started yet. We did get the referral from kaiser for Ryan to attend the 8 week social skills class. Looking forward to that. It's supposed to start soon - but I haven't heard from anyone. I'll have to follow up with it. 

We are still in the assessment phase of ABA and we have our second appointment for that on Tuesday. I was supposed to record his tantrums (the trigger, duration, and how it ended) but I've sucked at doing that it filling out the questionnaire he have me. It always seems like chaos ensues when we are leaving, out somewhere or I'm nursing. Basically it always seems inconvenient to document his tantrums. I'll have to work on that today and tomorrow to compensate! Either way we are being told ABA won't start until June probably. 

We haven't heard from Easter Seals about occupational therapy or speech therapy but I'm assuming those won't start until June either. I'll need to follow up on these too. 

On another note, we went camping. We also went to Legoland for the first time. Here are some pictures from our trip. 

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Ryan turns 7!!

 I've attempted to write this post 3 different times and never finish and the ap on my phone didn't save it and apparently only now am I realizing this. So forgive my briefness and enjoy the pics!! 

We took the kids to the science museum where there was a Lego exhibit! They loved it and so did we! We ended the day at toys r us where Ryan got to chose his presents. It was a good day and I cannot believe my baby is 7! 

Monday, March 23, 2015

Horses and Trampolines

I should mention, only because this picture shows it so well, that Ryan lost his first tooth recently. At almost 7 years old he finally lost one. Of course daddy helped. He went old school too. Tied floss to the tooth and to the doorknob ... Slammed the door and tadaaa ... I couldn't watch and it was painful to even hear but Ryan was a champ and was fine once the tooth stopped bleeding. 

Yesterday was quite an adventure. We went to a horse show and the boys loved the horses. A friend of mine was in the show with her Clydesdales and we got rides on the "monster truck carriage." 

Tonight we went to the Inland Empire Autism Society's support group meeting tonight at a trampoline park. Boys had a blast and I learned some strategies about  how to introduce more foods into his diet! 

Lastly, made Ryan's ABA assessment appointment. Should be intersting. 

Monday, March 16, 2015

Autism clinic

Looking over some of Ryan's testing results and he was diagnosed as having delayed nonverbal cognitive skills, low adaptive skills and social skill deficits. We have to follow up with a cognitive evaluation with behavioral health. It was pretty eye opening getting the results back regarding the paperwork we filled up prior to the assessment - we scored him in the low range at the <1 percentile. That's bad - however the psychologist did note that this score appears rather inconsistent with his presentation in the assessment so I'm hoping I just was underestimating his abilities when I filled the packet out! On the upside she did note Ryan used complex speech and that he asked the examiner about her opinions and experiences. 

His speech evaluator said he has a moderate-severe expressive language delay. She notes his lisp in her evaluation.  Receptive language was within functional limits though. She notes that he didn't initiate conversation or social interaction yet responded adequately. 

He's medical history does include developmental speech and language disorder. During this last set of tests he's syntax construction (the arrangement of words and phrases to create well-formed sentences in a language) age equivalent is 3years 9 months... His auditory comprehension was 5 years 5 months...  He'll be seven this month... The evaluator  did note that he can improve with consistency from us regarding reinforcing intervention strategies. He will receive speech therapy at least once a week. He has receptive, expressive and articulation goals set. 

The occupational therapist indicated he still has sensory issues and is lacking in both fine and gross motor skills. He couldn't throw a ball over hand. The OT's evaluation was probably the least shocking because he was previously diagnosed with SPD. With the observation from the recent assessment they were able to justify therapy again and that's exciting news. Ryan progressed steadily with OT morevioisky so I'm assuming he will do the same this round. OT should be once a week. 

Ryan will also get ABA and we aren't too sure what that's like since he's never had it. He will be challenged but that will only help us and him have the tools to be in control if his reactions to transitions. 

Well, I guess that's all for now. I could write more but it's time to sleep. 

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Just another day...

So Ryan woke up starving because he refused to eat what I made for dinner the previous night (see previous post). He had a lethargic demeanor but was fine after eating a bowl of oatmeal and a bowl of cereal (which is a lot for him). 

Later in the day he surprised me and drew a picture that wasn't just of stop lights and traffic signs! It did have some signs in the picture, of course, but there were other things too! 
The picture is basically of the movie UP - which was totally random because we haven't watched the movie in a long time. 

So in the picture he says it's him to the left and me on the right. I asked him as many questions as I could to get him to explain the drawing - which was a total of 4 questions - before he was over explaining what should have been obvious. ;) 

The colorful circles are the balloons, he's wearing a sash that has patches (this was hard to understand what he was saying - thank God I've seen the movie). The blurb between the two people is a 'curved road ahead' sign (which he couldn't articulate he just kept saying it was a sign when I asked and than he moved his hand and body in a  wiggily upwards motion). Oh and the last detail I got was when he corrected me about the sign on the bottom right of the picture - I assumed it was a sign and he quickly came back with "it's a mailbox." He moved on to Legos after ditching his drawing (and me sitting next to it trying to have a conversation with him about it).

He was consumed for a large portion of the day with Legos (Friday is our light school work day to prepare for Shabbat). It was all about stop lights and windmills. I snuck a picture of what he was working on. He will sit for hours it seems and build and smash and rebuild and smash again stoplights he had built. I'm honestly shocked anything made it to the patch of road here. 

Whenever we leave to go somewhere he takes his favorite stoplights and signs with him wherever we go in a pink school pencil box. I'll have to get a picture of him with it - it's funny. 

Well that's all for how - time to change a baby diaper. 

Friday, March 13, 2015

Changes and Updates

Ok, brace yourself. This may be a novel-length post since I'm attempting to cover, oh, say, about 3 years worth of time. I'll try to break it up in a few posts... Let's just see where this first post leads us. 
Let me start off with my justification in starting up this blog again after so much time has passed. We recently went back to kaiser to get Ryan reassessed. As his parents, we started noticing some behavioral patterns that didn't seem... Normal. Here are just a few of those behaviors... 

About 6-8 months prior to this post we went camping. Ever since the trip Ryan refuses to go potty alone. He says he is scared. No, nothing happened on our trip that would unquestionably justify this new pattern, but, like you probably are thinking now, we figured it was temporary. Well it's not. But that alone didn't cause too much concern.

Ryan also still prefers to play alone or with younger kids. He gets bossed around and bullied among kids his age and older. The other kids have a hard time understanding him and he doesn't really understand what they want from him. Not diagnosis worthy, I know, but still bummed us out. 
He is a very picky eater and has a strong (if not adamant) approach to what he does eat. For example, he only wants green apples, and if there's a blemish on the apple I have to remove it. He needs it cored and God help you if there is any remnant of the core left! Ok, I know what you're thinking, so - he's picky - all kids have their preferences, right? Well, just last night, in my attempt to be sneaky and challenge him with his diet, I made spaghetti. Now Ryan only likes the noodles and the crap Parmesan cheese on his plate. I made spaghetti squash to help boost his veggie intake and to hide that the noodles weren't noodles I mixed the sauce and turkey meat with the squash. I covered his portion with real cheese to help entice him. Well, he refused to eat it and went to bed without eating anything (not because we made him but because he refused to eat - like it was the principal of the matter). Ok, so you may be thinking "well, he's just strong willed" or "well you need to make him eat" or maybe even "serves him right"... Either way, as a parent it's a distressing situation to have your underweight 7 year old refuse to eat! 

Another behavioral pattern that has surfaced in a strong way is his obsessive nature to certain random things. My husband and I originally thought this was cute, thinking "oh awesome, Ryan is finally into something versus being aloof and disconnected"... However what he gets obsessed about are traffic lights and signs, specific salt water fish, and pigs. Now every child has preferences but Ryan will draw images from the above listed groups and they had to be perfect or he was pissed. He draws the same items over and over and over. There's a whole rain forest worth of crumpled paper and pieces of broken pencils when he finally throws himself on the floor in frustration - always after getting in my face begging for help with accuracy in his drawings (which I never produced well enough because he still crumpled up my attempt and desperately requested my help immediately following). 

Anyways, those are some of the topics we brought up when discussing Ryan with the pediatrician. Short version is Ryan does fall on the spectrum and has since been diagnosed with autism. He still has his diagnosis of sensory processing disorder as well. The diagnosis is fairly recent and we are starting occupational therapy, speech therapy, ABA, and we still have some educational testing to do with the psychologist. We want to also see a dietician for help regarding his diet but the doc says that referral will come from the OT (so we will see if it happens). 

My reasons for starting back up on this blog are many. Mostly to track Ryan's journey and to hopefully inspire and encourage other moms out there who are being raised by a special needs kid! 

I guess that's enough for now despite the fact I have so much more to write about!!! In the meantime, I'll leave you with this- Ryan is loving being a big brother to our new arrival - little Levi!! 

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Tubs fun and more!

Ryan participates in a Tubs program. We meet with Melissa about every two weeks and Ryan, every time, gets a new fun filled tub. The program is totally free, its through the county I believe but its part of the Building a Generation program. Check out the pictures and see all the fun stuff this months tub had! This month also included a leapster laptop that Ryan loved! The purpose of the Tubs program is to give parents tools to help children learn and progress academically. It's been fun and I have no complaints. Melissa has worked hard to cater Ryan's learning needs. It has been fun.

On another note, the other pictures attached just highlight some of Ryan's funny moments. He loved his Bat Hat he made at school. We went to a farm on Oak Glen and he made friends with two cats and he tried to feed them apples he picked. And I had to include a couple funny faces he made while taking pictures of himself. He can offically navigate my phone and use the camera to entertain himself. He turns on the silly distortions and just cracks up. The silly pictures never get old!

Lastly, we hung out at my friend Kristi's house and we noticed that Ryan's outfit matched her completely coordinated decor. He passed out on the couch and he blended in like a doll because his shirt was red, white and black... So is her living/kitchen area. It was so funny!

Well that's all for now. I hope to post about more soon!