Wednesday, July 16, 2008


I have been pretty stressed and worried this week. After being in Chicago last week and seeing Danny's therapist, I have begun to question the quality of care he is getting. His therapist in Chicago is wonderful: knowledgeable, up on the latest findings on SPD, caring and intuitive. It is his therapist in Effingham that I have serious concerns about.

That therapist would be me.

Linda, Danny's Chicago OT, set up a home program for us to do regularly with Danny. We have bought tons of therapy equipment for him, spending probably over a thousand dollars. I have kept notes on our work, we have used every known candy as bribery to get him to do his therapy, and we have worked hard. But the bottom line is, I am not an occupational therapist. Not even close. I have degrees in English and Education, so I didn't learn a whole lot about the nervous system, the bones, muscles or kinesiology in school. When it comes to helping my son, my education has failed me miserably. Unfortunately, the ability to quote Shakespeare's sonnets or dissect all of August Wilson's plays and their place in African American Literature just don't really matter in Sensory Integration Therapy.

I have already seriously thought about going back to school to become an occupational therapist, but there are no schools that offer the program anywhere near my town. Plus, it would take so long to get the degree and I need a good therapist for Danny NOW. I so worry that I am wasting precious time. We have been through a few therapists in the area who were terrible. One recent therapist after 6 months with Danny never realized that his knees are becoming deformed because he needs orthotics! I mean, c'mon, people! I could have had him treated for that months ago.

Anyway, so I am stressed and worried and a bit uncertain where to turn. I have done a bunch of research and I think I may have tracked down a really amazing therapy clinic in Terre Haute, IN, which is about an hour and 20 minutes away. I am waiting for them to call me back. I so hope this will work out. Otherwise, Bil and I are actually considering moving somewhere so that we can get Danny the therapy services he needs. I would rather not move, but we may have no choice. Danny's therapy needs are getting more complicated and I feel ill-equipped to meet them. We would still work with Danny and do exercises, but I would at least like to feel like a professional is in charge and is checking up on us regularly so I don't completely scar my child or miss potentially crippling problems that need to be addressed (at least anymore that is inevitable when you, as a mother have so many neuroses!).

I am just exhausted by it all and feel like I am groping in the dark.


Amy Jane said...

Patty Porch,

It's a good thing I'm coming up there, because I need to cheer you up! I wish I had more time to type right now, but I don't. So, I'm going to say this: everything that you said in your post absolutely PROVES that Danny does NOT have an ineffectual mother. So, quit feeling sorry for yourself and Danny, and keep doing what you're doing, which is, as far as I can tell, everything in your power to get him the therapy he needs! More later...

Anonymous said...

Good Mommy- You will move to the ends of the earth to help him- in awe!

Kia said...

Wow. Are you me? Are you sure you're not me? I'll tell you why:

I too have a son with SPD. I too have a degree in English and in Education. I too feel like I'm not doing much to help my kid....

Sorry to hear that you're feeling like you're not doing enough. It's hard. Sounds to me though like you're doing all you can do. Just keep plugging away. That's what I'm trying to do, too...

Good luck!