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Mikey’s Progress: Portage, Speech Therapy & Nursery

When Mikey had his two year check back in October 2016, I mentioned to my health visitor I had some concerns about the fact he wasn’t speaking, making eye contact or responding to his name.

The first avenue we took was a hearing test.

A few people had mentioned he seemed deaf or that he may have hearing problems, we went for a hearing test and he passed with flying colours.

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So the next route we took was removing his dummy and limiting his TV time, which improved his focus and he started to make a few sounds, but we decided together he needs some support.

So we had three options to explore: Speech Therapy, Portage and Nursery

This was October last year and I didn’t quite feel he was ready for nursery so, I went to a Speech Therapy drop in session and my health visitor applied for Portage, which went to a panel along with other applications and it was decided Mikey would qualify for it.

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Fast forward to January 2017 he had his first appointment session of Speech Therapy and is now saying the words: Bubbles, Up, Pop, Daddy, Jack, Bot Bot and Yeah.

He now goes to nursery twice a week and runs off without saying bye, then cries when I pick him up because he wants to stay there (charming).

Plus on Tuesday he had his first Portage session.

I felt nervous and excited about his first session with the Portage worker, I didn’t really know what to expect.

I knew their aims were to improve his eye-contact, socialising and interaction, we’d discussed that in the initial meeting and I felt happy with these goals.

The session went really well, she brought along some toys that meant Mikey had to give her eye contact and she put her thumbs up and said “good looking” every time he looked at her.

I saw a great improvement even after just one session, so I’m excited that he has this weekly.

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The fact is that Mikey is extremely clever, (like scary clever) he knows what he wants and he sees the world in his own way and he lives by it.

Time and time again I keep getting asked what “they” think is “wrong with him” by people, especially because the Autism word keeps getting thrown around.

NOTHING is “wrong” with him, there is so much right with him, he’s so intelligent and if anything overly independent for his age.

Plus it’s not for “them” to decide.

Who are “they” anyway?

Professionals who don’t know him?

I’m his mother and it doesn’t matter to me what label may or may not be given to my son, because to me a label doesn’t change who he is, I love him for exactly who he is right now, his quirks, his meltdowns, the special little moments we get together.

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It isn’t for anyone else to change those things, but of course I take into consideration that he may need support and I would never hold him back from anything that can make his life easier to live, I mean celebrities pay thousands for therapies, it can’t do any harm whatsoever, so my thinking process is…why not?

I’m having these therapies put in place for him, partially because his health visitor suggested it and I completely trust her judgement, he is a very kind person, with a lot of experience and really cares for Mikey. Also my own instincts as mother tell me that although it works for him now being self-serving and not interacting with others, that it may be a struggle for him when he’s older, but there’s a good chance it won’t be.

I’d rather him have gentle therapies now to support him at a young age where he knows no different and prevent any future struggles that may happen, than waiting to see if he has to undo habits once he is in school, when it will be much harder for him because he will have more of a comprehension of the fact it is support he is getting, rather than knowing no different.

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The support he is getting has improved his interaction, eye-contact, socialising and speech in such a short space of time, I’m so proud of him and how well he is doing.

If anyone else is going through a similar journey with their child please comment, I’d love to hear from you about your experience or just to know about your little one.

I will keep you updated on his progress.

Thanks for reading!

michael

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Three poorly babies

I know Jack & Mikey aren’t technically “babies” but they are MY babies, so I have three poorly babies today.

It’s been starting for a few days but today it’s hit our household like a bacteria filled bomb, all three have sticky eyes (Yuck!), poor Jack woke up and thought he was blind! 🙈

Mikey has no comprehension of why I have to clean his eyes, he’s the hardest one to help. Jack doesn’t like having his eyes cleaned (using boiling water and cotton wool) plus eye drops, but he knows he needs them and if he just plays along it’s over a lot quicker than if he fights me, Nicole hates having her eyes cleaned (she’s too young for drops) but is too little fight back, so just gives me a guilty feeling with her bottom lip.

But Mikey, he is the strongest out of all three and hates any sort of intervention, wiping his nose, washing his hair, changing his bum…he’s not a fan of anything like that, so trying to swipe his eyes with cotton wool in one direction so I’m not rubbing it back into his eye, then putting in eye drops is near-impossible, but I managed it, I may have had to gently restrain him with my legs, but it took me no longer than a minute, whereas I could have sat there for an hour trying to reason with him but got nowhere, if you are a fan of the TV show Friends….Imagine Rachel with the eye drop, but x10!

I had plans to take the kids out to the park today or maybe even to a play area, but I’m not so well myself and really all they want to do is stay in their pyjamas and watch TV, so I’m not going to pass up the opportunity to chill with them and not spread this cold/virus/eye infection whatever you want to call it, to the outside world.

Kids perk up pretty quickly so I’m hoping they’ll be OK for nursery and a play date tomorrow, there’s really no way to tell until the morning with kids, they are pretty unpredictable. I know they’ll be absolutely gutted to miss out but I suppose it’s my job to decide what is best and weigh up the pros and cons, they’ve been having their eye drops for two days now, so hopefully their eye will be better by tomorrow.

I’m doing a video on my Vlog about my poorly babies, check it out and please subscribe

Yummy Mummy’s Vlog

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Proud Mummy Moment

The Proud Mummy Moments

Premature baby

When you have a premature baby the idea of the distant future doesn’t seem as important as it did before, all that matters is the next day, the next hour, the next five minutes. While they are NICU the outside world doesn’t exist to you anymore, all that matters is this moment and getting your baby through it.

Memories

When those days become a memory and you look back on what your little miracle has been through, it makes you so grateful for all they can achieve now they are out of the woods.

Luckily for us, Jack came home with no complications, he surpassed all his milestones for his birth date never mind his due date and was discharged from the paediatrician. He turned three in November and is about to go from two to three sessions a week.

Nursery

I popped in to pick him up last Tuesday and his key worker brought out his monthly review that she was filling in and said he’s surpassing everything, but they always look for an area of improvement so they are going to focus on his maths, he can count but they are going to develop his skills further. Great! I thought to my self, quite advanced if you ask me but he seems to be enjoying himself and learning more and more so who am I to argue.

This was when I mentioned increasing his sessions by one more, asking her to see when they had another morning session available. I explained to her, he started April 2016 with one three hour session, then in September 2016 I increased it again and it’s now January and we’ve increased to a third session. I’d like him to be doing 15 hours before he starts school, so I have an idea in my head of increasing to four sessions in April (12 hours) and five sessions by September (15 hours) then he will be doing 15 hours for a year before he starts school in September 2018.

The wrong group

I explained this to his key worker and she looked at me confused, saying he starts school in September this year. Nooo, I told her he was born November 2013, yes he will be one of the older kids, but he doesn’t start until 2018. She had thought he was more advanced therefore older and it turns out he’s been in the pre-school group all this time! Not only that but he was doing amazing in every aspect!

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I’m proud of my kids for hitting any milestones and for all of their achievements, but for Jack it is just that bit more amazing, he was born almost three months early weighing only 3lbs, he couldn’t breathe on his own and was only allowed 0.5mls of milk every 6 hours, how does he go from that to being the top of a class that is supposed to be too advanced for him?!

Proud mummy

He really is our little miracle, he overcame all the odds and now he’s surpassing everyone’s expectations, he makes me such a proud mummy, to have such a clever, special boy.

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Day 10: 365 Activity Challenge

10th January 2017

It’s toy Tuesday!

Today, Jack has been at Nursery and told me about the different toys he’s played with, he was also very keen on a “motorbike” until he went over the handle bars 🙈

Mikey has seen his Portage worker for the first time, which is a specialist who uses play to improve his social and communication skills.

When they both got home we lined up all of their favourite toys around the living room and made a “bear trail” as Jack called it, unfortunately I didn’t get a picture but I did get one of Mikey lining up his favourite two toys his “choo choo train” and his “gary snail”.

Today was more of a chilled day than an organised activity, but we’ve had appointment after appointment the last few days so I thought a bit of chill time with their favourite toys would be fun.