by Sam, Contributing Writer
Hello again all! My intention was to follow my initial post with a series of events following our diagnosis and day of reality. It is, however, almost Thanksgiving so instead of dwelling on any challenges or trial and error moments through this apraxia journey I think I’ll give thanks instead. After all, despite the challenges, I can think of hundreds of things to be thankful for.
Well it’s obviously simple to be thankful the moment I look at this adorable face! I’m thankful for a healthy diet and occupational therapy that allowed this little boy to love the ocean without crying that it burns his sensitive, eczema skin like last year and thankful for the years of speech therapy that allowed him to tell me he loved it despite an apraxia diagnosis.
Every time I get down and discouraged about this challenge or feel just plain sorry for my little boy I remind myself that it could be worse. This is challenging but character building. My son is learning to be a hard worker at an early age. He works hard at OT and Speech Therapy four times a week and works hard to speak every word he says. While this journey is a challenging one, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. I pray for those parents who don’t necessarily have that light. We know that apraxia can be beaten. We’ll keep working, keep fighting, keep researching and someday Andon will talk at an age appropriate level. Most likely there will even come a day in childhood that people who didn’t know Andon before will speak with him and never know that this challenge was a part of his life.
I’m thankful that we live in a country filled with resources that allow me to communicate and work with others who are experienced in apraxia and therefore make this journey a little less lonely and little more informed. One of the resources I speak of is CASANA. I’m more than thankful for the summer conference in Nashville where we met Dave Hammer. I highly recommend the conference if it comes to an area near you. What a comforting and informative experience! I’m equally thankful that from meeting Dave there that we realized his personality would be an outstanding fit for Andon and have since been able to schedule a trip to see him in just three weeks! He is such a passionate man and we look forward to his help with this apraxia journey!
Lastly, I am thankful to announce that we are welcoming a baby brother for Andon in April of 2015! We just told Andon and his siblings last week and are so excited that he is thrilled. There was an immediate sense of pride in Andon when we told him that he will be a big brother. He can’t wait to hold him and is so excited to tell people that the baby is coming. He does tend to argue with his brother and sister that the baby is only his brother and not theirs, but we’ll work through that in time…hopefully. He has also decided that he’d like to name him Turbo. Umm, we’ll be working through that too.
I’m thankful for the Jake’s Journey blog post which informed me that holistic doctors are out there and that I was able to find an outstanding one two hours from our home. I thank God often that with a healthier diet plan from our holistic doctor that I can help this baby dodge the sensory processing disorder, food allergies and apraxia that his brother is fighting. But, if for some reason we’re faced with this battle again, I’m so thankful for my knowledge and resources that I’ve gained through Andon’s journey!
Have a blessed and happy Thanksgiving from Andon’s family to yours!
Bio: Sam lives in Kentucky with her husband of ten years and four children. Her son Andon was diagnosed with apraxia of speech at age three. He has a severe peanut allergy and some other food intolerances. Andon also has sensory processing disorder along with some sleep challenges. She is a stay at home, homeschooling mom with a bachelors degree in elementary education and a masters in early childhood.