Sometimes I look back to when our son Harry was born and I think “wow, the signs were there right from the first night!” You see Harry was the only baby on the ward that night that ‘refused’ to stop feeding, ‘refused’ to go to sleep and simply ‘refused’ to compromise! Even the midwife returned looking simple phased after several attempts to get our little fella to just give in! Yet, ironically after 1 week of being home my sleepless child decided to sleep 12hrs every night and stay wide awake during the most part of the day. At 8 months he still struggled to support himself in a sitting position and simply HATED the door bouncer/swing that his older brother had adored.
By this stage we had given up trying to encourage foods that were not ‘perfectly puréed’ unless classified as ‘finger foods’ and lets not mention the gag reflex and distress caused by a banana! But as a mum, of two beautiful children, I figured “he’ll grow out of it”, but Harry didn’t grow out of it and in fact he simply got worse!
By his 2 1/2 yr check, we knew we needed some help! We spoke to our health visitor about his communication difficulties, his obsessive behaviour, poor diet, random and antagonizing tantrums and his constant ‘on the go’ behaviours. We also discussed his constant need to be bundled, to invade others space, to jump and bounce and do anything but sit still!!! We also expressed our concerns that he refused to wear certain clothes, had to have the bath at a ‘perfect’ temperature (near freezing to you and I) and his strange habits of chewing inedible objects such as baby wipes. We got referred to a pediatrician – and thus began our battle!!!
The pediatrician referred him for speech and language therapy and insisted he had adenoids out, tonsils out and gromits in. Harry, they had decided, was simply frustrated due to mild hearing loss, unable to speak due to enlarged tonsils and unable to sleep appropriately due to adenoids causing his snoring! We went along with this diagnosis but were NOT convinced!
Harry now 5, has no tonsils, no adenoids and has his 2nd set of gromits, did this help I here you ask? Well, my son sleeps a bit better and he’s not deaf. School believes our incredibly clever son is a perfect angel, but they do not witness the ‘meltdown’ on the way home because Harry cannot contain himself any longer. No they are not the ones wrapping him into a bear squish hug to help him to release his tension because he needs to ‘calm down’. But I know my son and have continued to battle the professionals in the UK who ‘know best’. We have continued our battle to be heard and most importantly ‘believed’ and have finally got a new patrician (since moving home) who also thinks things aren’t quite right. She referred us to an OT who today confirmed what we already knew, Harry is a sensory seeker with SPD!
So today, I wanted to express my joy to you all because today I can actually say “mum knows best”