We have decided to put Rylen into a Mother's Day Out program at a nearby church twice a week to try to enhance his speech. I do not believe that all kids need this and I am still not sure this is going to be the solution, but we are trying it until summer. He seems to enjoy going and always seems like a happy kid at drop off and upon pick up, but they have informed me that he is still struggling during the day with moments of tears. Naptime is easy, so hopefully with time he will adjust better to the sequence of the day.
Now, let me back up to explain a bit that has been going on this month.
March has been busy for our family. I have wondered about Rylen's speech since he turned two. It was not that he didn't talk at all, but not as much as other kids. I know that all kids develop at different paces and was convinced that his speech would just take off one day. I have still not given up that thought, but as the months move on, his speech delay has become more and more obvious. A month ago, I finally decided to pursue it. We talked to some friends of ours who recommended two options and we decided to pursue them both so that time would not slip by. We began an evaluation through Early Childhood Intervention (ECI) which takes children up to age 3 and then they are implemented into the school system for further help. We also scheduled a speech evaluation through Texas Children's Health Centers and an Audiology appt to verify hearing. We felt the hearing appointment would just be formality. His speech appointment was first and they verified him being behind. We knew this. His audiology appointment was a surprise. He failed the test with a loose diagnosis of minor hearing loss. This was the last thing I was expecting to hear. They have recommended that we have this test done again next week to verify their findings and to have an ABR test done which requires sedation. This test will most likely not occur until June due to scheduling. This test is necessary because of his age and inability to get an accurate reading on the test previously done. Our ECI test came back as we suspected as well. His Physical, Social-Emotional and Adaptive behavior came back at 36 months. Rylen is 32 months old, so he scored higher than his age on these categories. His Cognitive came back at 29 months (due to communication) and his Communication came back at 24 months. We were not really surprised at these results. They just verified my thoughts.
So, what do we do? We take it one day at a time. Rylen will begin speech with ECI this friday and we will have those appointments twice a month through June. They will give us things to work on until the next scheduled appointment. In the meantime, we have Rylen in MDO to engage him more frequently with other children and to encourage speech. We will also pursue a final diagnosis of his hearing as well as continue to sign with him to increase his vocabulary the best we know how. What is a mother to do? Cry for the challenge that we are facing, love and encourage him for the blessing that he is, and look to God to be our guide.