Last year, or thereabouts, we were told that Josh would most likely be diagnosed with an autistic spectrum disorder, we fought the diagnosis because our guts told us that this wasn’t right, no one tried to rule out his history, instead they took everything we said and tried to make it fit the diagnosis. I was told that if it was discovered that it was NOT autism then it would certainly be global development delay; since I knew it wasn’t the former I sort of adopted the latter. I knew he was delayed, I wasn’t in any kind of denial, I just knew that he didn’t display the classic symptoms of Autism. We took him back to Sick Kids for a second opinion and I had my fears eased, Autism was taken off the table but nothing else was said of the global development thing.
As you know, Josh just underwent his neuro-psychological testing, we got the results yesterday and I was surprised to learn a few things. Things that I wanted to share with you because 1) You have been following this story and deserve to hear it and 2) because I have had a lot of people asking how it went and figured this would be the fasted way to update people.
Josh is an average 4 year old in all ways except his language! He is SOLIDLY average (a good thing apparently!). He is however very limited in his fine motor skills and language (both falling within borderline and impaired). He is being labeled as ‘language impaired’ and being reffered to speech therapy, occupation therapy and of course physio therapy.
In March when Josh had his speech assesment he scored at an age of a two and half year old. Just 3 months later his test scores showed him at the 3.5 year level! His single word knowledge is what every four year old would have, his problem is grammar, and sentence structure and abstract concepts but his non-verbal communication is ‘excellent’ and ‘well within his age range’.
Last night after the boys were in bed for the night I read over the report, and there clearly spelled out was that there was NO chance of Global Developemental delay, that his brain had been forming normally before the stroke, and that all his delays are consistent with the stroke and it’s location.
The great news is that there is so much hope for kids who suffered a stroke at such a young age, the plasticity of the brain plus intensive therapy could see Joshua make a full recovery! My son, will one day talk to me, tell me his thoughts, share his dreams and hopes and tell me stories about his day!
Last night, as I tucked him into bed he looked at me and said ‘Mummy, Josh no more scared.’ I repeated him so that I was sure I knew what he was trying to say and discovered that he meant what he said, he wasn’t scared at night anymore. Then he waved his arm around the room and said ‘scared all gone’ and I asked about the dragons, the ‘monkey’s and the other scary things that came each night to cause his sleep to be disturbed, and he repeated ‘scared all gone.’
I gave him a kiss, we said our prayers, I sang him his song… and as I shut the door I couldn’t help but think that my ‘scared was gone too’.
God is good… even when we don’t know he’s being good. He loves us… even if we don’t know he loves us. He is there for us… even when we can’t see him.