Sunday, December 15, 2013

Early Intervention....Again

When Kendall was 8 months old I took her to the pediatrician because I was concerned about her development.  She could not roll.  (Belly to back, or back to belly).  It's odd because she actually did roll a few times when she was 10 weeks old (which I caught on camera)!

Kylie started rolling consistently around 4 months old (when we discovered she was a belly sleeper), but Kendall refused.  Nothing I did could get her to roll.  I took her to the pediatrician, where upon closer observation he diagnosed her with torticollis.  Her diagnosis fast tracked her into the Early Intervention program.  Initially she was evaluated on all five areas of development and was assigned to work with a pediatric physical therapist.  We worked with a wonderful woman named Krista until Kendall was about 14 months old.  We chose to stop services after she was walking, and  during her last observation she met or exceeded developmental expectations for her age group.

For the last month or so, I've noticed some oddities about Kendall (well, I've noticed them longer than the last few months, but I really started becoming concerned in the last month or so).

First of all, there are things that she absolutely excels at.  She has an outstanding memory.  She can recite entire songs and books after only hearing them a few times.  She remembers certain things we did (that I’m actually surprised she would even take note of) weeks or even months later.  She has an extensive vocabulary as well.  I stopped counting how many words the girls could say at 18 months or so.  She can identify almost every color, letter (upper and lower case) and number.  She’s also very affectionate and understands everything we say/tell her.  She makes eye contact constantly, can tell us what she needs/wants, and can sit down for a while reading books and doing puzzles (she LOVES puzzles and can actually put them together really well).  She loves the iPad too, and uses ABC Mouse.  We limit her time on that though.

My concerns:

The biggest one is her ability to follow direction.  If the girls are given instructions to do a project, Kylie and will follow through.  Most of the time, Kendall either gets distracted or loses interest and doesn’t do what is asked of her.  She often needs extra direction or supervision to do things.  Rachel really notices she struggles with multi-layered instructions (do this, then do that).  She’ll either just do the first part, or won’t do either.  She is inconsistent with me on this as well.

She is not as conversational as Kylie.  Sometimes she just talks and asks questions without waiting for (or desiring) a response.  She also repeats things a lot.  Sometimes it almost seems like she's programmed to say certain things at certain times.  I've really been trying to get her more engaged in conversations lately, and Kevin said he noticed a huge difference when he got home from his work trip.  I think this is something we just need to keep working at.

There are also times where it takes multiple tries to get her attention.  “Kendall, Kendall, Kendall, KENDALL!”  before she answers or acknowledges you’re even talking to her.

She doesn’t throw tantrums a lot, but when she does they’re EPIC.  It can sometimes take about 30 minutes to get her calmed back down to normal.  She also likes to hit (the floor, a wall, her leg) when she doesn’t get what she wants, and often looks right at me for a reaction after she does that.

I’ve also noticed that she flaps her arms a good deal.  When she does she’s usually either excited or anxious about something, and it lasts about 1-2 seconds,but I know it can be an issue.

She’s not potty trained yet, nor does she really seem to have a desire to.  I know this is not a huge deal, but she just really doesn't care. She’s gone on the potty, but not with any consistency. Rewards also really have no draw for her.  I know she's only two and a half, and she's technically not behind in this area, but this can definitely fall in line with the other concerns I have.

She also has an aversion to buttons all of a sudden.  She threw a fit the other morning when I put a sweater on her that had buttons on it.  "I don't want my BUTTONS!"  I actually coaxed her into wearing it with an M&M.  MOTY!

She has a history of being extremely sensitive to certain noises.  The vacuum, loud laughing/talking, etc.  There are times when she will burst into tears due to these noises.

I contacted the Early Intervention Specialist we were working with before and outlined my concerns to her.  She felt that Kendall may have a type of Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD), and suggested I have her re-evaluated.  We only can take advantage of the early intervention services until Kendall is 3, so things are moving quickly.  She's going to go through her evaluation on January 6th.  I have my doubts that she is going to qualify, because she's really so far ahead of the game in other areas. My concern is that her sensory issues, and the fact that she gets so easily distracted and has a tough time following instructions, may end up snowballing into a bigger problem.  She may end up having a difficult time academically and socially in a school setting.  I want to do everything I can to give her the best chance to succeed.  She's so smart (and I'm not just being braggy...she really is), but I feel like all these issues may hinder her chance to shine to her fullest potential.

But for now, we wait and see.

To be continued...

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