Coming into this cleft journey we (Darrick and I) relied heavily on the suggestions of the doctors and nurses. They gave us suggestions on who we should see for what, and even gave feedback from other parents.
As time has passed we have learned to find different therapist or doctors based on Emma’s needs and learning type. We have been through multiple therapist, however, we have stuck with our original set of doctors. They have pretty much become extended family!
Emma has been a total champ when it comes to the many changes in her life. We have changed therapist because she didnt “mesh” well with them. At the beginning of last school year her teacher changed; we totally loved her first teacher! Not only was she great for Emma but great for an over-protective mom that was SUPER nervous about putting her daughter in preschool because I was unsure if they would pay attention to all her needs! But she did just that! But again Emma surprised us and loved the new teacher even when I was a little skeptical!
As school ended last school year we learned that her speech therapist would be leaving the district. When I received this news, I cried HARD!!! Even though I knew we would be able to keep in touch with her…it was HARD!!! It was hard because this previous year when they switched teachers at the last minute she was the one that helped the parents and students transition!!!
Her work was more than the therapist because you can tell how much she loves the children! And the children loved her…I’m nervous for the upcoming school year because we have been with her for 2 years now…
As parents we prepare our children for meeting new doctors and therapist but never expect them to leave…we grow to LOVE these individuals because they are caring for our children!!
Fast Forward to This Week…
Two weeks ago, I was getting ready for church and I was standing in the bathroom putting on makeup I received a weird local call. I answered and the lady on the other end asked to speak to Emma; well the only person that calls and asks for Emma is my sister, Emma’s Tauntie.
I said this is her mom; Emma is 4 years old…she apologized and said that she was calling to let me know that they needed to cancel our ear appointment on Monday morning. I was actually relieved because I didn’t really feel like going but I was going to suck it up and go…however, everything was good until she told me why they had to cancel the appointment! The appointment was canceled because her ENT Doctor passed away. Talk about something hitting you like a TON of bricks!!! I soooooo wasn’t expecting that at all, granted he was on the older side he was in good health! She said it came to them as a shock too and they are canceling everything at the moment so they can get everyone placed with new doctors.
I tell this story to say, you don’t realize how attached you become to the people who are treating your children. I actually cried telling my mother about his passing, she was in shock too, as she has been to many of these appointments with Emma and I.
Since starting back to work my mom has been taking Emma to speech therapy, on a weekly basis (Thank you Jesus for a great support system)…we have an awesome private therapist and I knew the transition would be okay since we love her therapist…well I received news that she’s leaving. I feel like I can’t get a break with Emma’s therapists leaving us…I didnt cry this time but I must admit I was a little sad! Emma’s current therapist was her first outside therapist that connected with the school therapist and we saw some improvement IMMEDIATELY (What a BLESSING)!!! And now she’s leaving too…
Well now this means more change for her…Emma usually adjust very well, however, we loved her ENT and speech therapists. So now we have to warm up to a new therapists (school and private) and a new style of therapy…as she will be receiving prompt speech therapy (starting TODAY…yikes)!
I have learned through the transitions to stay positive and remain an advocate for Emma. They need to know she has a good support system…that doesn’t take any mess! And that ultimately we want the best for our daughter!!!
Usually I don’t really prep Emma for the transitions, like when we went to see another therapist I let her feel her out for herself. Emma’s speech is a lot better but I know to take clues from her on how well she is “meshing” with another therapist. You can tell immediately! So if you are facing new transitions, make sure you are taking clues from your child. You can definitely tell in their mannerisms if this is a good “fit” or if you need to make adjustments. I’m not saying to move hastily give it time and see if anything changes…if not you know its not a good fit!
When Emma changed private speech therapist I saw her excel IMMEDIATELY, and I noticed it wasn’t any hesitation when she would attend speech therapy. Looking back at our sessions with previous therapist this wasn’t the case at all. She would act out when she wasn’t getting what she needed.
We didn’t have any control with teacher transitions, however, I showed support by always being present! After getting over my initial feelings and realizing I needed to be better with the transition for Emma…I was able to handle it better. Emma is my first so I am learning, however, I remained consistent on the things I expected from her new teacher.