Friday, June 17, 2011

Slow Recovery & Update on The Wild Child

This stomach bug really wiped me out. The worst of the actual symptoms you would associate with a stomach virus (ie, tossing of the cookies) was over in about half a day. The recovery took about 5 days. It took a good 4 of those days to be able to eat again; I'm only just back to regular food. The worst part was the weakness; just like a bad fibro flare up. DH got impatient with me after a couple of days. If he couldn't see me throwing up or running a fever then I must be fine, only I wasn't. The kids needed a lot of shuttling around (the kids ALWAYS need a lot of shuttling around) and it was hard to pitch in and do my share of that. We got through it, though. One foot in front of the other, one errand at a time, dropping as much as possible and putting out only the most immediate of fires. All things considered, we managed without too many disasters. Thank goodness DH is able to work from home some of the time; that really made a difference.

But now I'm 95% better, so onward with the busy days!

The Wild Child:

The Wild Child started a special summer camp (run by the folks who did his testing) where he spends an hour every day with a reading specialist then gets to participate in some enrichment activities. I was able to speak with the reading tutor today and I was very impressed. She told me she's using the Orton-Gillingham method to get his brain going; he should do well. It's been so frustrating for him. I was taught to teach reading using whole language methods but he wasn't retaining the information presented that way. I tried sight words and he would get some of them, but the retention again just wasn't there. I know enough to do some kinesthetic work, which could have been successful, but I don't have the specialized knowledge base to go far enough with it. We had a sight word list that he reviewed over and over and over, and he would KNOW those words cold even when I mixed the list up, but when he saw them somewhere else he would blank. He also struggles with the alphabet, again something we've gone over time and again, and he does not retain it. He knows most of the letters but there are about 4 or 5 that stump him every time. He also has issues with upper and lower case; he knows upper case letters but can't match them to their lower case counterparts.

Why Test The Wild Child:

I felt a bit of panic before The Wild Child was tested whenever I thought about his struggles. I knew where he should be, even if he was a slow starter, and how he should respond to instruction, but it wasn't happening. Since The Eldest was slow to start reading then took off and leap frogged over her peers when she was 8, I tried to tell myself to relax, it would happen in time. There was one difference I couldn't ignore, however; The Eldest knew her alphabet from early on. Now that The Wild Child is almost 9 and still doesn't know all of his letters, and seems to be unable to learn despite all of my efforts, I made the decision to have him tested. I called a local children's hospital to get a recommendation and I'm happy with the group they sent me to. It's a relief in a way; there is something wrong but it can be addressed. He can learn to read if he's taught in the right way. Of course I would rather he didn't have these challenges to face, but they are part of who he is and I love him top to bottom, learning disabilities and all.

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