I'm not really sure how to start this post. I'm trying to tread lightly in some ways but still record my honest heart. We are going through some "new" areas with our dear Stevie. Since around the time before Lydia was born, he has shown more and more sensory "issues" I'll call them. Please forgive my vagueness for the time being. Like I said, I want to tread a bit lightly for now. So, add the sensory issues to his severe speech delay, and add that to some "low-tone" we've seen in him and are now just discovering that it has a name, we have had a lot to muddle through, think about, research, and pray about. While looking more into these things, I could not believe the connections of many of his symptoms. It was extremely eye-opening. I am not by any means quick to use terms for labeling. I don't want to jump to conclusions or diagnoses. However, I do not want to ignore things which may lead to regret later on. Stevie is a happy, expressive, lovable, caring, and fun little boy. He has the most cheerful belly laugh I've ever heard, and his eyes are full of life. He has been in Speech Therapy for a couple of months, and sort of oddly enough, his sensory issues have become more pronounced and reared their heads in other ways since beginning. Upon his original evaluation, they noted some of those issues, but I was told they were not "getting in the way," and all that he needed was Speech. As of late, we are seeing the opposite to be true.
To be completely honest, this is a road not without fears. I keep holding onto his his engaging eyes and trying to hear that laugh as often as I can...because I love them, and I confess, part of me worries that they may fade. I worry his expressiveness and interaction may fade before my very eyes and be lost in a world his own. How often I have heard the stories of having a happy "normal" baby born, and as time went on, the child regressed. I do not want the difficulties he's having to grow further in the way of his development. I am so thankful for his Speech Therapist, as she's sort of walking us through this, helping as an outside perspective, and working hard for us. He is making some progress in the speech sessions (and in our regular days), which is so thrilling...it's just little bits of slow progress, but thrilling nonetheless. I sit in the other room while he's with his Speech Teacher, and the little positive things I hear and see, literally bring me tears of thankfulness and encouragement. Sometimes, he'll catch my eye in pure delight from a moment of his own progress, and we'll smile together. You see, I love my little boy with all my heart. I want him to live a full, happy, normal (I guess whatever that means) life. I believe every loving parent desires the same, right? No one wants their child to have any more challenges in life than are already there. I think the child would certainly appreciate that as well.
So, at this time, we are seeking as many services as we can for our little guy, such as possibly OT and PT and a visit to the Developmental Pediatrician on top of Speech Therapy. All of this takes a little time as it's a process full of evaluations and set-ups. This may just be the boost he needs or the more intensive help that will mean a hopefully better life later on. We're trying to find that balance in our minds and emotions. I had never even heard this song by Matt Hammitt before last week (well, I think I may have heard it, but it wasn't until last week that I really paid attention), and boy, has it just been my heart as we love on our little boy and work with him.
I have so much to be thankful for, and I am so thankful... for my healthy children and a loving husband who is home and with us. This is not meant to sound extreme and certainly not insensitive- others are going through far greater challenges and trials, just as this song is actually written about. But for me, sometimes the unknowns can be intimidating and scary for sure, but I am so thankful I am in direct connection with the loving Creator of my son, and I know He is not finished with any of us yet. I will do all I can for his and his sister's (and any other children He sees fit to give us) growth and development. Father, hold our hands and our hearts and don't let them go... and may I pour all I have into my family.