Evaluation Update. Maybe a Blessing in Disguise?

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I am at a low point with Cooper right now. I can look back at the course of this journey and see that my low points coincide with Cooper’s naughtiest times.  We just had an amazing 2 week stretch so I am not surprised this is happening now but it never gets any easier. And it seems to hit my harder each time.

I brought Cooper to his 2nd evaluation out of 8 yesterday. This was the speech portion. I am an open book when it comes to Cooper and I made it quite clear to these people since the beginning that Cooper is nonverbal. He is extremely vocal but 98% of his sounds are vowels.

Well, how do I say this…Cooper did OK. He engaged with the teacher twice. He pointed to pictures in a book for 4 minutes or so. Yay. My heart kind of broke when I realized how much work is ahead of us. Each page had 4 pictures and she would ask Cooper to point to one. I would say out of the 30 or so pages he got 10 right. He knew apple, bird, drinking, sleeping, etc.  He did not know mail or money. Should he? Ugh. Once he got sick of the questions he would point to all 4 pictures on each page. He actually got a compliment at this point…she said he was an excellent pointer. I’LL TAKE IT!

On an aside, I will tell you that it is extremely daunting to know that Cooper has to be taught everything. And it takes many, many times for him to pick up on something. For example, I said to the boys last night that it was bath-tubby time. Cooper got excited while Sawyer started trying to take his shirt off. Such a difference.

Cooper also played blocks with her for 3 minutes or so. During this play he signed and make the ‘m’ sound. Thank God. Other than that though, the other 30 minutes was all out freaking chaos. He climbed tables, threw M&M’s, threw balls, knocked over chairs, etc. I know I’ve mentioned on here before that we are very strict with Cooper but in this setting it is so hard. You have a teacher watching every move and you don’t know what they want you to do. It’s awful. I am trying to have an adult conversation and balls are flying at my head like a damn dodge-ball game.

And then as soon as I mention it’s time to go he signs ‘all done’ and picks up all the toys and puts his sweatshirt on. I’ll give that kid one thing, he’s an excellent picker-upper. I swear he is going to put me in the looney bin.

At the end she let me know every so nicely that she won’t need to see Cooper again. At first I didn’t understand what she was saying and then it clicked. Cooper is so messed up that she doesn’t need 3 sessions to evaluate; she only needs one. She said she established his base line and doesn’t need to evaluate anymore. Sigh. Ugh.

Now, yes, this is a HUGE blessing. Bringing him to these appointments is torture for everyone involved. But God help me, the emotional side of this never gets any easier.

Two evaluations left. The teacher also mentioned bringing in the child psychologist to evaluate him. I just want to be done so we can focus on the summer and starting school in the fall. We are so close.

And a little cuteness of the boys wrestling last night. LOVE.

The boys

boys 2

boys 3

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12 thoughts on “Evaluation Update. Maybe a Blessing in Disguise?

  1. Believe it or not, bad evaluations are good. 🙂 The more cut and dry it is, the more help they will throw his way and early intervention is the key! Ever since I moved him to this new therapist…I can see a whole new kid in Jp. Keep your chin up, buttercup!

  2. I wasn’t surprised when I read your comment that he didn’t know mail and money.. Apple, Bird, those are really concrete.. Mail and money are abstract – they relate to a group of other things and you must be able to make the connection of how groups of things work.. That’s not easy – and it gives you a place to start as well for teaching that as a target.
    Take it as a positive that she didn’t need more evaluations – it means it was clear what the next steps are.

  3. It is hard *hugs* and it sucks but as long as you can get supports in place for him that is the main thing. Early intervention is everything:) BTW those SLP tests with THAT picture book are not easy for kiddos to sit and do. There is too much to filter out and concentrate on. Pointing is actually a big thing.,..not all kids with challenges can do that. My son was assessed last week and from reading my blog you know how well he’s doing right one. Well ….he hates seeing that SLP book and would barely answer the questions. He is just tired of being assessed this way. Luckily the SLP was flexible and said “how about I draw you pictures and you tell me what you think I drawing.” This caught his interest and motivated him and he talked to her:) it’s all about the “currency” aka motivation because it’s super hard for the kids to do this stuff:) good luck!

      • P.S. sometimes it may feel like 2 steps forward and then one step back. I will add that my little guy suddenly has trouble sleeping when he makes leaps forward. Its like his mind won’t stop because he’s so excited he can do something new. I think its because life is just so intense for them and nothing is ever done in half measure…the good and the not so good 😉 hang in there.

  4. Hi Kate, I think that any evaluation that actually shows the children acting as they do at home and representing is a good evaluation. Even, if how they act as they do at home is not the way you’d like it. Hugs!

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