Trusting the Process

9f2a5711a0e509151b284ed56206b5b8Cooper started Occupational Therapy last night.

More therapy. More forms. More time. More time away from Sawyer. More everything.

I want to be positive. I want to trust the process. I want to believe that it will work.


I kinda, sorta think I have the only kid that therapy won’t help.

Less than a year ago we were doing speech 3 times a week and OT as well. We were doing social groups and ECFE and IEPs and parent groups. And it didn’t work.

I think it actually did more damage than good.

Cooper would be so stressed out and scream. He did a lot of head hitting. And so much whining. He wanted to leave the second we got there. He was very unhappy. I would be so stressed out I would cry. I think I even started to develop a nervous tick. I joke. Sorta. But I would do this thing where I poked at my face. And scratched. I did a lot of sleeping. Which was more like worrying with my eyes closed.

Jamie felt it. The boys felt it. I felt it. Our dogs felt it.

These amazing therapists would try and motivate Cooper with toys and games. And he didn’t care. The kid does not care about toys. Cooper would run. They would chase Cooper. I would sit in the corner and rock. I kid. Sorta.

In October I stopped it all. And then we started Fraser. And it began to work.

I slowly started to have hope and believe we were doing the right things.

And during the last few months I started to notice that Cooper was making more vocal sounds. He started to WANT to communicate. Remember, there are kiddos that ‘can’t talk and want too’ and ‘kiddos that can’t talk and don’t care too’. I started to think we were moving in the right direction.

But I refused to call bring him to services in the evening. The kid is 4. His days go from 7:20 AM to 4:30 PM Monday thru Friday. Our family doesn’t need to do anymore right now.

So, Cooper’s name was put on the waiting list for speech. And we waited. And waited. I started to feel the pressure from people to get this kid in speech. I even read something that by 5 a nonverbal kid can never catch up. And the anxiety started to build again. Was I waiting too long? Was I being a lazy mom because I didn’t’ want to do anymore?

Which is so damn funny to me because I was just starting to feel better.

There’s that self doubt that I love so much.

And then I got the call last week in between doctors visits and filling prescriptions that he was eligible for speech and OT.

I actually sighed out loud. Therapy is great. When it works.

And just like that Cooper’s day went from 7:20 AM to 5:15 PM on Mondays and Tuesdays. Sigh.

OT2Last night was his first night. And it was an effing spectacle. I shit you not I started having flashbacks to a year ago. He screamed. He threw. He knocked over chairs. He ran and darted.

But one thing was different. He’s 10 lbs. heavier now. This kid is big.

I was sweating as I tried to contain him, fill out paperwork, and keep my patience in check. And I noticed that I started poking at my eyes again. Like grabbing the bridge of my nose and temple. Crap.

I would say the last 5 minutes was successful. And by successful I mean he wasn’t screaming.

But, in saying that, there was no ACTUAL occupational therapy performed. He wouldn’t participate. He did a lot of pointing at the door and screaming. And a lot of knocking stuff off counters. There was a lot of chasing. And a lot of word vomit on my end where I tried to talk about Cooper’s strengths and weaknesses. Awesome.

I get very frustrated when Cooper won’t try. It’s effing exhausting. I think a lot about how a NT child would have so much fun doing OT. Sawyer would love having someone pay attention to him and play for 45 minutes at a time. Cooper is the opposite. He feels that he is being murdered.

Yes, it will probably get better. Blah, blah, blah.

But, it also might not.

The therapist asked what I wanted to work on. I said everything. She said, how about we start with self regulation.

I laughed. Our whole life is working on self regulation with Cooper. What’s 2 more hours.




5 thoughts on “Trusting the Process

  1. What it all comes down to is this – YOU know what’s best for YOUR child. Too much stress takes away any benefit. That being said, sometimes it takes a dozen seemingly unsuccessful sessions to build trust and a level of understanding with a new person in his life. Hugs.

  2. I am going through this journey also, and my son has come such a long way it’s unbelievable. I feel like I can help you. Is there a way I can reach you privately?

  3. I have no idea what to tell you Kate. My son has been in speech at OT for almost two years now…I can’t honestly say if it’s doing anything for him or not. We don’t know *what* else to do so we keep him in it. That’s not exactly a resounding endorsement of therapy, especially when it costs us an arm and a leg (we can’t qualify for medicaid). Then I think, what if it is helping, and we stop it, and then he regresses?

    I can tell you for sure it has not helped our home life or made his behaviors any easier to handle. Sometimes I wonder if this whole therapy thing is a farce.

    I also don’t believe that everything is over if you don’t make “the window of time.” That had me all up in knots too. Bottom line for me: there is not enough known about autism for anyone to make judgements like that.

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