My Trip to Atsugi
Thursday was the scheduled meeting at Atsugi with the speech and early education specialists. We didn't want Etta to miss school so we decided that I would go alone and Eric would take care of the kids (without a car). I left early since it took 2.5 hours to get there last time and it took me that long again. I really wish I would have taken a different CD, Alan Jackson got really old after the first 90 minutes.
Since I didn't bring Chloe it make the meeting so much easier. The ladies went through their evaluation and wanted to make sure there were no surprises and that I agreed with them. I agreed with the communication delay and told them I was a little surprised with the social behavioral delay but they said it stems from her lack of communication. They asked me what some of our goals would be for the next 6 months. We came up with using more words than screaming (right now it's more screaming than words) and to be able to wait for one minute without throwing a fit, tantrum, or screaming before getting what she has asked for. Chloe knows no patience. We will be meeting a minimum of 2 times a month. Sometimes it will be me alone (or Eric if he feels he could benefit from it), me with Chloe, Eric with Chloe, group play days with other kids like Chloe, mom's group with others like me, and home visits by several of the specialists.
I told them my concern that Yokota said that we wouldn't be reimbursed since it wasn't far enough away. What?!?! They told me they would look into it because we should be reimbursed. Let's hope, $45 in tolls (that's with the borrowed ETC card) plus gas each time sure would add up. That's why they suggested the home visit once a month or so because they get reimbursed. Plus, they think Chloe must act different in the home setting and would like to see her on her own turf.
Other than that, they are basically giving me resources and ideas to correct some of the problems we are having with her. For example, Chloe likes to lay herself down on the ground (sometimes quietly and sometimes with a tantrum) to get picked up or something she wants. For getting picked up they suggested that we have her put her arms up and say up for other things (not just to be picked up) so she gets the point. Just in the first day we saw a huge change. She hasn't thrown herself on the ground since then, but I'm sure it is bound to happen because we can't always pick her up. Also, they are having me play the waiting game with her. Have her snack or drink in hand and playingly say wait and sign at the same time for about 5 seconds. So far, no fits. The biggest one is the meltdown while I'm making dinner. They say Eric needs to take her to do Daddy Chloe one on one time to keep her busy and not in my way (laying on the floor screaming or hanging on my legs screaming). So far so good. Now I just need to find a way to get her to speak more. Still waiting for Your Baby Cab Read to show up. Hope it will be at Yokota when we go next!
Ok, so I've gone on long enough. I'm thankful that they didn't classify her as something worse like autistic or ADD. I suppose it's just too early for that. They will reevaluate Chloe before she turns three since they don't work with kids over three. Those kids move into a different program. It would be about the time we move so it will be important to find out if she'll need to continue getting help because it could effect where we try going from here. For example, we wouldn't be able to get any assistance from the Embassy here in Tokyo. But, if we were to be at a base oversees any of the base schools would have programs for her. Uhhh, we already had a lot to think about with the upcoming assignment now this too. Oh well, no since worrying about it since it's a little ways away. Thanks for all your prayers over the last month. I can't wait to see some improvement.