Wednesday, April 30, 2014

What a day....

This morning was Jacob's appointment at the behavioral specialist.  This doctor came very highly recommended, and we were eager to hear what he had to say.  Of course, first we had to get there, which proved to be a very challenging prospect this morning.  In fact, I'm thankful the hospital had valet parking (same price as the ramp!), because it enabled us to get to the appointment only a few minutes late and not risk missing it completely at the 15 minute late mark.  Once we got past that obstacle, we ended up having a very good morning.

The doctor was wonderful.  He asked a lot of questions, listened to our answers, took a ton of notes, and seemed to genuinely process all that we were telling him.  Jacob played contentedly nearby, and periodically the doctor would ask Jacob something related to what we were telling him.  After an hour of Q&A, he turned his attention to Jacob.  They went through a bunch of tests--worksheet-type activities where he had to duplicate simple drawings or choose exact matches to a certain picture or series of letters.  They did some simple listening comprehension, too.  Jacob did really well.  He was attentive and well-behaved. 

We knew that we weren't going to get answers today (our follow-up is already scheduled in three weeks), but his initial feedback was promising.  Even though we've been hearing a lot of talk about ADHD and Asperger's over the past 6+ months, he doesn't think either of those things capture what is going on with Jacob.  At the very least he's got a quirky personality that manifests itself in being very particular about a few things, like what he's wearing or what he wants to be doing.  But hearing that the two scariest things don't seem to be an issue felt freeing, to some degree.  There's hope he might outgrow this, or that there might be some reasonable things to do to help him through it.  And hopefully when we go back he'll have some techniques to manage the challenges.  We worry most about his performance in school, since he's so scattered and unfocused there.  Home is challenging and a bit more physical, but I think we can manage those issues if we know school is going okay. 

Anyway, we'll see how it all turns out.  There are definite issues that need help, but it's nice to know that someone who specializes in these types of challenges is the one who will be helping us.  To know that this guy has probably seen almost everything, from severe autism to a simple case of ADHD, felt good, and he has such a strong ability to talk to patients and make them feel comfortable.  All of the people that we've talked to thus far don't have the same type of experience as him, so it felt great knowing that he was listening to our concerns and might actually have some real life experience to compare. 

After the appointment, we took Jacob back to school and took off on our own lunch date.  We ate a lunch full of gluten and headed in for a few hours or work.  Unfortunately, at the end of that lunch I found out that my friend, the one with the son who just beat leukemia, had been let go from her job at my office.  I was crushed, and then almost instantly angry.  It just seemed so awful that they held her job for 10 months and then fire her three weeks after she finally got back.  Much of the rest of the day was all of us expressing our annoyance.

At one point my friend sent me a message through Facebook mentioning that she forgot some of her breast pump parts in the refrigerator.  She asked me to grab them to keep them safe, and said she'd pick them up.  I did her one better, because her house is five minutes from mine and right down the road from where my car was for an oil change today.  So, once I had my car back, I stopped at her house.  I ended up staying for over an hour, hanging out with her, holding her baby boy, and marveling at how healthy little Roman is now, with his full head of blond hair and long eyelashes!  Such a miracle!  I got my baby fix and we were both able to vent about today's events, which I think was good for both of us.  I'm still not happy about it, but I have a feeling that considering what they've been through in the past year, this obstacle won't slow them down one bit.  Still, I will miss seeing her each day and I know that this friendship will take some work to maintain, but that will be worth it!

So, anyway, today was quite the eventful day.  This morning felt so good in contrast to this afternoon's bad news, but a little time with a friend made it all feel a little better.   I'm exhausted, though, so off to bed I go! 

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