So the weekend has passed, and we are on our way home from Albuquerque, NM, so I thought I would have time to write about therapy from Friday. A lot of time has passed, so I hoped that I can remember all that was done and learned.
My hubby had the opportunity to join us in therapy this time, and he walked away with a new outlook on what Turbo goes through.
The previous evening, Turbo had gotten a few scrapes from the playground. Nothing too serious, in fact, hardly anything; however, he HAD to have medicine and Band-Aides. When we got home, we started his bath, but he was so torn about wanting to get clean, but not wanting to get his "owies" wet. He would start to get in, but then would run out of the bathroom because he couldn't get them wet. When we asked him if he could just sit on the edge of the tub and put his feet in while he washed them, he thought it was a good idea, but definitely couldn't go through with it! He was absolutely hysterical! It was so sad to see him this way. You could clearly see that he wanted to get clean, but couldn't fathom the idea of getting his "owies" wet!
When we saw Mrs. Renee the next day, I mentioned to her what the previous nights events were. She asked, "Could he come up with a plan to help get him clean without getting particular areas wet?" Sadly, I had to tell her the he was so hysterical that he couldn't even function, much less be in the bathroom! She said, that she knew she had to work on tactile "information" and sensations, but now she realizes that she needs to work on it more. She recommended that we see a psychiatrist to talk about OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder - funny, I jokingly talk about the fact that I must have it, but unfortunately, this is no laughing matter anymore). She wants me to talk with the psychiatrist about different things that I notice he does compulsively, because now she believes that there is more to him than his sensory issues. Not only does he have the sensory issues, but there might be some underlying issues as well.
She referred back to self-care for an example. She said that there might have been a time where "clipping" his toenails or fingernails might have been traumatic for him, and so now he associates clipping his nails with that particular instance, and is now defensive about it to protect himself from the hurt/pain/memory of it because he didn't like it the first time. Well, I can tell you the time that this particular traumatic event took place...I remember it well...UGH! I've scarred him for life! Moving on....
Sensory issues often relate to those kind of memories/events. But the emotional breakdowns and obsession with certain things are more on the psychiatric level...OI!...Good to know. We have an appointment with the doc in the next couple of weeks.
When we first arrived, there was another little boy in the lobby that was high-wired much like Turbo, and they were playing hard and fast waiting for their therapists. Once they arrived, you could tell, both therapists were nervous for the session! Ms. Renee took him into a room where the swing with the flat (square if you will) seat was hanging from the ceiling. She asked him to sit criss-cross, wearing his headphones, and asked me to swing him slowly and gently while he hung onto a swing. He was now getting proprioceptive feedback as well as vestibular feedback as he nestled into a balanced activity. He was now Just Right. To help, we sung Row, Row, Row Your Boat.
Once this activity was done, she showed me a way to help Turbo calm down even more. She had him sit on a beanbag chair, and showed me how to use a scrub brush to help him with his tactile sensation to help him tolerate something on his skin. It is also used to help "massage" his body to help bring him down to TOO SLOW or JUST RIGHT.
She had me rub him down on all four extremities and his back. I was to apply pressure so the bristles were not to tickle him, but give him enough sensation so that relaxation could occur. I would recite the nursery rhyme, "Peas Porridge Hot, Peas Porridge Cold". Afterwards, I would follow up with a proprioceptive activity that affected his joints. "Chuga-Chuga-CHoo-CHoo" - I would say that as I "accordion-ed" all his joints: shoulder, elbow, wrist, fingers, hips, knees, ankles, toes, etc. It was amazing! I was able to use both this practices at the Balloon Fiesta in Albuquerque this weekend when he "HAD TO GET OUT OF HERE!". I sat him on my lap, rocked him, sung to him, stroked all his extremities, and Chuga-Chuga-ed. It was amazing.
Next, we went into the gym and he was able to play on the zip line and monkey bars. Receiving a lot of proprioceptive feedback with intentional cognitive learning. I can't quite remember all that was said and taught and reasons why for some of the things. But she mostly just showed us ways to him calm down using an exercise ball, rocking, singing, etc.
Overall, Friday's session was very valuable as I walked away with tools, exercises and then actual practice for things that were taught. Plus, some answers might be found as we meet with the psychiatrist.
Tomorrow is another session (Monday), and I am sure I am going to walk away with more invaluable lessons.