The kind-of diagnosis

IMG_0328Adopting four kids within five years (we had a foster son for five months within that time as well, making it five newborns in five years) put life in the fast and hairy lane in an awful hurry. From a family of just my main man and I, to a family of six, had it’s growing pains and we felt them. I’m almost sure that’s where I got the stretch marks.:-)

After having our son diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder I sped into researching what that meant exactly. What I found out was that SPD is not a diagnosis in any official capacity. “They” (whoever the people with the uppity up knowledge are) consider it a symptom of something else. It got me thinking “What could it be then?”

I had considered that he may be autistic, but had him put through strenuous assessments (that he hated) and the professionals concluded that he didn’t have. Of course, they said, he is still young…it’s hard to know. Instead he was handed the label “Regulatory Disorder of Early Childhood”. It’s a fancier name for Sensory Processing Disorder. That’s my unprofessional opinion anyways. It was explained to me that his brain was not regulating the signals it was supposed to discipher…in other words, same thing. This “diagnosis” only would hold until he turned five…in a year. What the what?

I won’t get into the boring details about how this affects therapies and funding and who sees him at what times, but let’s just say I felt like I had waded into water way over my head and all I wanted was for my child to not suffer anymore. Somebody make him better!!

He cried over the littlest seeming things. I learned how to ease his little nervous system and how to avoid sensory overload when I could. I learned why he was freaking out over certain events. I learned what the technical terms were for everything involved in his world. And yet, I still knew nothing.

His preschool teacher and Teacher’s Aide were invaluable in our support system. They both knew so much and helped me navigate the treacherous waters of having a child with special challenges, whatever the challenges names were. They even potty trained him for me after two years of my own lame, yet heroic, attempts. I considered them miracle workers!

Life was about to get a whole lot crazier.

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