Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Riley's action packed day


I started my day by taking Riley to Children's Hospital, currently known as Seattle Children's, for his weekly speech therapy session. He usually spends an hour there with Miss Wendy and she plays games with him. Only there is a lot of speech involved and she really hammers him with corrections and suggestions. It's pretty intense, and I'm 37. Imagine Riley being 4.9 and I wonder how he feels.

Anyway, today he was a bit distracted. I think it had something to do with being up late last night (we went to a party at a friend's house) and he didn't actually fall asleep until 10:30 or so. He was tired and he said his head was hurting. During his session, he ended up laying on the floor to alleviate the ache in the back of his head. He told me (and this wasn't the first time) that he wished he had a rolling bed so he could move horizontally (again, to relieve the ache).

After the session, we went to "Five, down", which is how Riley refers to the cafeteria location, as it's a floor below his therapy. I got him a bowl of pasta and he chowed down. In between bites, he'd ask to take a break. He just looked worn out. I asked him if sometimes he wished he could just hang out at home instead of going to doctors and hospitals all the time. Of course he said yes, and that made me a little sad.

From there, it was back home for a bit before we loaded up again to go to yet another therapist, this one of the occupational variety. He spent about 45-50 minutes with Miss Jessica working on things like opening packages, writing, squeezing dough. His fine motor skills need work and that's the kind of thing Jessica works on.

Since we've been seeing these two therapists, Riley's speech and motor skills have improved dramatically. It's pretty incredible to see and hear his progress. We are very fortunate to have these people helping Riley. It's great to know that he'll be able to master most of the things that other kids can master; it'll just take him a little longer.

We ran a few errands later and made it home for dinner. His wheels finally fell off at bedtime. He was so exhausted (huge dark circles under his eyes) that he pretty much screamed for 10 minutes before going to bed. And this is from a kid who pretty much never screams about anything anymore.

I just have to remind myself sometimes that when I was 4 going on 5, I was usually just hanging around the house, playing with my brother (only one at the time!), or doing whatever 4-5 year olds do. Riley has gone to the doctor in his almost 5 years more than I have in my 37. We just hope he continues to improve and the doctor visits will be for follow-ups only, and nothing more.