As participants in the Intensive Treatment Program at IAHP, we are asked to submit reports halfway between our biannual visits to keep the staff up to date on Jacob’s progress. Of course, any time we have questions we are encouraged to reach out, but these reports supply the regular contact that assures the program’s success. This rainy, blustery day coupled with the sweet sound of Jacob sleeping make the perfect environment for it.
In these reports we supply information on Jacob’s nutrition, program achieved, changes in abilities and the ever important question “is your child worse in any way?” We also supply videos of Jacob doing his program. The entire team meets to review the information we send and make recommendations for any changes.
We will tell them that Jacob is LOVING his Intellectual program. He sees 25 “Bits of Intelligence” every day and 25 words or couplets. Of these, 5 rotate daily so he is always getting new information. His bits consist of large clear pictures with the corresponding title and the subject can vary greatly. He may be learning about ocean fish, great works of art, vegetables or US presidents. Soon we will move from couplets to phrases and then books!
Jacob is also doing well with his physical program. This consists of his inclined track, gravity assisted environment, gravity free environment, patterning and flat floor crawling. The inclined track is strategically designed crawling surface that is at a downward angle to decrease the burden of gravity. Any movement Jacob makes will create motion to teach him what he needs to do to be successful. Similarly, Jacob’s gravity assisted environment suspends Jacob in the crawling position and makes it even easier for Jacob’s movements to create motion. Patterning is passive on Jacob’s part and we move his body in the pattern in which he will crawl to send the message to his brain “this is what it feels like to crawl.” The gravity free environment is also passive on Jacob’s part. It is like a bouncer on steroids. Jacob can be suspended in many positions and move in all directions. This will develop the vestibular areas of the brain that are responsible for coordination and integration. Together, these activities will get our little guy moving. He is SO close and he gets closer every day. We have clear evidence that he has the ability to move his body in the correct way, we just need to connect all of the dots. When he does, WATCH OUT!!
Admittedly, we have had some challenges in the last 3 months. Our little guy has been having a hard time sleeping and swallowing. This has disrupted quite a bit of his program. Some nights he does not tolerate his respiratory patterning device and some days he sleeps into the afternoon which takes away our valuable program time. Thankfully, the team at IAHP has been right along side us working to find a solution. We are taking steps in the right direction and hope to be back on track soon.
Our greatest success in the last 3 months is the improvement in his nutrition. Jacob has always had a very nutritious diet, but in an effort to increase calories, we fell out of balance. This resulted in even more challenges achieving his calorie goals.
However, since we discovered our error and corrected it, he has been eating like a champ…and he is gaining the thighs to prove it!!
Well, I hear our little bug stirring and he is certain to be hungry. Its applesauce time!