Saturday, 30 Sep 2006

Under-qualification and smeary crayons

Little Guy has finally been qualified for Early Intervention. He’s always been kind of behind in his gross motor skills, but he wasn’t far enough behind to qualify for services to keep him from falling further behind. As a result, he has fallen further behind, so now they will provide services to help him catch up. The joys of bureaucracy.

Anyway, Little Guy has a sixth sense about the Early Intervention team. Last time they came, he started doing all sorts of things that he had never done before. It was amazing. This time, I sent out a very clear message to all of my family members (and especially to my Mother-in-Law, who is a physical therapist… or an occupational therapist…one of those) that they were not allowed to teach him anything in the week while we waiting for the EI folks. I called EI because at 10 ½ months, he still wasn’t crawling, walking, or even able to get into a sitting position on his own. And wouldn’t you know it, I went into the nursery the day before the PT came, and Little Guy was sitting in his crib grinning at me!

Luckily, we were allowed to ignore his sudden (and mysterious) sitting spell because I had never seen him do it and I honestly couldn’t figure out how he pulled it off. As it turns out, he rated at a 7 month level at nearly 11 months of age. My MIL (the PT or OT – I wish I could remember) went into a flurry of questions and suggested that they should work with him 2 or 3 times a week. I wish that people would realize that their best intentions can have the total opposite effect on the people you intend them for. In fact, it should be the first rule of the MIL handbook. =} Ok, that aside… I know she meant well, but then I started feeling worried and sad that Little Guy was so far behind.

It’s something I call mommy-guilt – Maybe I should have played with him more. Or maybe I should have worked with him on it every day. But the fact is that most people don’t have to work on things like rolling over with their infants and the fact that I basically taught Little Guy to roll did alleviate some of my guilt. The other thing is that he’s 11 months old and can’t crawl. It’s not a crisis, so there is simply no reason to treat it like one.

The PT will work with Little Guy (and me) every other week to start with. Since she came by last week, Little Guy started clapping (I tried to get him to clap for over 6 months), taking steps (he had previously just stood around and refused to move his feet), and sneakily sitting up when I’m not looking. This is pretty amazing. It’s even more amazing when you consider that she didn’t even work with him. We just completed paperwork!

I love having the EI people come because it gives me a sense of what is appropriate at each age and how I can support Little Guy in reaching those stages if he hasn’t already passed them. At his eval, though, they caught me totally off guard. The PT asked how he is with crayons. I laughed at what I thought was a hilarious joke. I mean, who gives a 10-month old crayons? Everything goes into his mouth. Turns out that he doesn’t know what to do with a crayon once he has it, so he ended up behind in his fine motor skills as well. It was like the IQ tests or whatever that are culturally biased (for example, if you’ve never seen a ball, you won’t know if it is larger or smaller than a house). Anyway, I bought Little Guy some crayons and he continued to try to eat them, so I guess he’ll just stay a step behind in his fine motor skills for the time being. Oh, and by the way, when you get washable crayons wet they turn into a smeary paint.


One Response to “Under-qualification and smeary crayons”

  1. Karen Rani Says:

    Sounds like he is making wonderful progress – that’s awesome. For the record, I hardly ever give Troll Baby crayons – for obvious reasons. But at 2 years old, he STILL eats them. But mostly, it’s cuz I’m a mean mom. :)