Tuesday, May 6, 2008

A New Chapter

There is a lot going on in my life right now. It seems as if each of the kids has an "issue", and TJ is going through some job "issues", and on and on it goes. Not that the "issues" are bad, but they have required lots of prayer and thought and discussions on our part, so it's been emotionally draining on my part.

First, Th received his acceptance letter from the Montessori school this past Saturday. I am so excited, as is he! This was a definite answer to prayer and one we have been waiting for since February.

Ta had his post-op appointment today with the ENT doctor. It went okay. He passed his hearing test, and most people would think that was good news, but I was speechless. Just last week his preschool teacher said something to me when I was picking him up about how all day he had trouble hearing her. TJ and I have noticed him having difficulty at home, too. TJ joked that when Ta went today, he was going to be fitted for hearing aids. So, what does this mean?

Well, he is having a more thorough evaluation performed by 2 audiologists at the end of the month. We have to drive to Charlotte for the appointment, so I will need to get a babysitter for the other children. Plus, the ENT wrote up a condensed report for me to give to my pediatrician. He thinks she (my ped) needs to consider screening Ta for a mild form of Autism. Yes, you read that correctly. Here is a quote directly from the report: "Needs ear specific hearing test. May need speech pathology eval. Must still be concerned regarding Autism Spectrum Disorder. Follow up after audio." I have been thinking about that all morning and balancing the signs back-and-forth in my mind. Yes, he does show a few of the signs (a late talker, he only said 3 words at the age of 2; he fixates, or to use the clinical term, perseverates, on certain things; he tantrums often) but he makes excellent eye contact, he enjoys playing with other children and will initiate play with others, he initiates conversations, and his communication skills seem to be up to par for his age now. I tried to get an appointment with my pediatrician to talk to her personally but of course, the phone mafia wouldn't let me get through to her and because it's not a "sick" or "well" visit, I can't just schedule an appointment. I left a message for the doc to call me back, and she did, only I missed the call. Talk about frustrating! I am left to keep waiting and praying.

So, in the meantime, he will go for a further hearing evaluation and depending on those results, he will have a speech/language evaluation to determine if there are other issues going on that are restricting his receptive communication. I have to keep a log to bring to the hearing appointment that documents all the times I notice him having difficulty hearing at home (like, for instance, when I call the kids and he doesn't answer but the others do, or times that he says, "What you say?" and I have to repeat myself) and his teacher needs to do the same for the mornings he's with her at preschool. It's going to be arduous, especially because already today I have had an instance where he didn't answer me, but I didn't have paper/pen handy so it didn't get written down and I don't recall all the specific details (time of day, environmental noise, what he was doing, what I was doing, etc).

I will save the news about TJ's job situation for a later date. I am tired and my brain hurts from thinking. Has that ever happened to you?

*I am thankful this is happening after the semester has ended and I can focus all of my attention on the needs of my children.*