Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Tuesday - henceforth to be known as Behavior Day

Hi Everyone,

Greetings from the land of Food.....as in EVERYTHING revolves around food. I'll gain 800 pounds by the time we're home and Ethan will lose 10 pounds. Men and their lightning fast metabolism....totally unfair.

I spent a lot of time today thinking about behavior. I'd always thought of behavior in terms of 'Bad Behavior' as in one of my kids needing a time out, loss of privledges, or a spanking. (Yeah, I said 'spank'. Gasp!) This program has me thinking of behavior like a teeter totter. Ethan's teeter totter has good behavior on one end and bad behavior on the other. Ethan's balancing point is control.

When Ethan loses some control in his world, the bad behavior side goes UP and the good behavior side goes DOWN. When he gains control the good behavior side goes UP and the bad behavior side goes DOWN. He's had control for the past several days.

Ethan started to lose some control in the feeding room today. He now has to actually take bites or sips to watch the beloved Thomas the Tank Engine videos. Oh, and we now have 4 feeding therapy appointments per day, up from 3.

First we had a meltdown in the playroom after breakfast. Someone touched the most favored 'wooden beads on twisty, convoluted yet brightly colored wires toy' (for lack of a better term), which started a red faced, fist clenched, Grrrrr-a-thon. Wow, what happened to my sweet, smiling, quiet, non-verbal, limp, shut-down little boy?

The fact that we had some sort of appointment every hour on the half hour today didn't help.

When the elevator doors opened on the speech therapy floor a little later, Ethan actually melted down before we even stepped out. He started screaming "NO! NO! NO!" while signing 'all done' and crying....real tears...not those fake, whiny alligator tears that come with the hands-covering-the-eyes meladrama. This was true real-life drama. You see, the speech therapist sticks all sorts of lumpy, bumpy, chewy, sprayed with flavor, THINGS into Ethan's never willing mouth. And he's on to her.

Occupational therapy was probably not much better. I believe the word the OT used to describe today's session was 'defensive'. It sounds so much better than 'completely and totally uncooperative', but our sweet OT would never say something like that! She did, however, say she knew better than to push with foods today. Good call.

Ethan did have a nice, positive breakthrough in the playroom today with another mom from the program. She had him so excited about playing blocks that he said, actual, real words, lots of them, and no, none of them were four lettered! He even counted to four, unprompted! It was good, no, it was great to see. Especially after his, at least, THREE playroom timeouts for throwing toys and hitting.

Tomorrow's a new day!

See you all soon!
Molly & Ethan

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