So today Dan decided to take us to Wood Green Animal Rescue Centre in Godmanchester. What a great place to visit. It’s 52 acres for a start, so huge, and is apparently one of the largest rehoming centres in Europe, which makes it pretty special in my eyes.
We strolled along the animal trail, reading all the facts and sign boards to Grayson. He adores animals and likes to know everything! He asks so many questions! The signboards around the trail were great as they had answers for him too.
We went to see the dogs, but unfortunately for us, fortunately for the dogs they have restricted viewing access to people who are serious about rehoming only. So we were only able to view dogs that were either being walked, or who were outSide in the ‘play’ area behind their kennels. I would love a puppy for Grayson, as a therapy dog. I think it would be very calming for him. D is not so keen, but I went on and on! Let’s just say I am working on it 😂. I miss my dogs, I had two when I lived in South Africa and I really do miss them. I never saw myself as a doggy kinda person until I had two. I think we shall be back at Wood Green potentially in the near future to view some puppy’s, well fingers crossed anyway.
So we did it, we survived Grayson’s first OT session! It was pretty uneventful. Gray and I drove into town, parked around the Outer Circle of Regents Park and walked, yes walked to the clinic. Grayson was reasonably cooperative and amused himself looking at builders along the way, as well as peering down at he basements of the offices / houses we past. He loves the book Funnybones where the skeletons live in the cellar, so he was on the look out for skeletons! A quick dash into Natural Kitchen for a healthy lunch and we were on our way – ok ok after I had had to leave the queue twice to find the little monkey who had run off around the shop / cafe. One blip is allowed right?!
Grayson met his OT Nancy and off they went to ‘play’ leaving me with two other mummy’s, both of whom were over with their children from Moscow for an intensive therapy week. It seems the clinic has lots of international children receiving treatment. I dread to think how much that all costs, but it makes me feel even happier with our choice.
The 45 minutes passed almost two quickly, I wasted too much time on Instagram and not enough time doing the admin I had planned on doing. I was invited in to see what Grayson had been up to. He had been having a blast, throwing himself around an obstacle course, and bouncing on a mini trampoline. All great stimulation for his vestibular system, but I immediately thought it was going to be a quiet drive home, he would be exhausted. He really settled in well, and seemed like he had been going for years, I adore that about him, how he just waltzes in like he owns the place and says hello. No homework this week, so they have eased us in gently, but I need to re read the report and understand whats going on more. We are all on such a learning curve at the start of this new journey.
It was a bit more of a struggle to walk back to the car, more due to sheer exhaustion than anything else I suspect. I did a lot of carrying, bribing and encouraging, and we got there without too much drama. Within about ten minutes he was snoozing blissfully, good old Classic FM and the line ‘Mummy wants some quiet time’ does it every single time! I am so proud of my little bean, he did so well today. Hopeful, but not delusional that next week will be as easy.
Bedtime however tonight, oh my goodness was tough. It went on for two hours. Lots of tired tears later, from us both, he finally nodded off and I snuck away downstairs. I was getting so frustrated but having read about Baby Charlie’s family loosing their court battle with Great Ormond Street today I felt awful grumbling that my darling boy would not go to sleep, I just lay there crying for them, and holding him close. I am so so blessed to be able to tuck him and Ruby up every night and to hold them close. I cannot even begin to imagine what Charlie’s poor family are going through tonight.
The day has arrived, Grayson was assessed today for Sensory Processing Disorder. Finally I feel like I am moving forward in this journey, perhaps to a destination now and not just around and around in circles being told I am either making it up, exaggerating, my son is naughty, or that their might perhaps be something wrong. He is a sweet boy and I have known that something does not add up for a good year or so now.
The clinic we were recommended in Central London, has great feedback, and I trust the OT who recommended it completely, she is a friend of my sisters and is also a specialist in Sensory Processing Disorder, just unfortunately has moved back to SA.
Within five minutes of being with the occupational therapist she told me he is a text book case. The relief was immense. I left them to it, the session was meant to be just the two of them, no mummy involvement although I would have loved to have been able to spy. The session was a two hour play based assessment. I popped for a take away cuppa and came back to the clinic to try and relax whilst impatiently waiting. Grayson seemed to have a great time, he loved his therapist and assessor and seemed to respond greatly to her. He is such a sociable little boy, such a chatterbox (hmmmmm I wonder who he gets that from!) I am so blessed that he is like that. I love his personality, even if he does drive me bonkers and is such hard work.
So now the next part of the wait begins, we have to wait two weeks for the parent meeting to discuss the assessment. It is going to be a long two weeks, I just want to get on with helping him now and helming us all. Its hard having a child with additional needs, with no guidance or support. It puts pressure on us all. God knows my relationship is in tatters.
So today Grayson had to go for more blood tests following our consultant visit a couple of weeks ago. I never highlight the fact we are going for tests, just that we are going to the hospital where the big play room is. He runs happily all the way from the carpark, pulling me along the corridors, pretty much running into everyone until we reach the Children Day Unit. He knows the whole way, and typically, the hospital, like most, is like a rabbit warren. He charges past the reception desk, saying ‘I’m here’ before dashing straight through to the huge play room that connects the Day Unit with the Children’s ward. There the fun begins, he goes from toy to toy, not knowing what to do first. I check us in at the desk and the play specialist follows me to find him amongst the toys so we can get the ‘magic’ cream on his hands ready for the blood tests. Despite knowing this does not hurt, he always gets a bit tetchy about having the cream on his hands, and always tries just the once to rub it off. The more I see his funny little ways, the more I wonder what are caused by perhaps a sensory disorder and what are just him being a pickle. Cream on both hands successfully, Grayson continues to play. He chats to everyone in the play room, even the fish!
Roll the clocks forward forty minutes and we are ready for the tests. Grayson at this stage is bossing the lovely Play Specialist around, dragging her from place to place, demanding she joins in with his games. She is truly fabulous and he is at complete ease with her. He happily goes into the side room with her and clambers onto her lap so he can get onto the iPad. Technology in these situations is a lifesaver. One arm draped around her back, cleverly caught by the Dr and iPad firmly clutched in the other he gets engrossed in whatever he is watching. He has no clue whatsoever that enough blood has been taken for seven test bottles, or that a needle has gone into him. He does not even flinch.
I am so grateful to the wonderful Paediatrics team at Lister, they are truly wonderful. The care and compassion they show, even for something as mundane as a blood test is amazing.
Will Grayson (3) notice I switched his milk this morning?
He sat and munched his breakfast without any milk related fuss. Phew! Pretty sure he did not have a clue anything was different.
Not to be hypocritical, I too have switched to Koko this morning and am trying it in my beloved morning tea. I’m going to be tough to convert on that, but I’m giving it a go
One broken tooth, one major dental phobia and one presumed infection equals one very poorly and ouchy ear and a very sad and pained mummy. Feeling so sorry for myself tonight.
Finally finally having my tooth fixed on Saturday, under sedation, amazingly covered on my Maternity Exemption. But until then I need some kind of relief. So braving a dental visit tomorrow to beg for some antibiotics.
In the meantime as part of my intended healthy living plan I’m testing out Clippers Sleep Easy tea. So the packaging is lovely, all grey, calm and simple.
I love the fact that Clipper products are made with pure ingredients with nothing artificial. This sits with my clean living plan (baby steps and all that!). This infusion includes cinnamon, chamomile, valerian, and other herbs. I honestly had no idea if it was going to be drinkable, but decided it was worth a shot! It’s actually delicious. What a lovely surprise. I am really enjoying it and will try another cup before I pop up to bed. Here’s to a long blissful sleep.
I’ve snuck off for a bath! Daddy is clearing out Grayson’s bedroom ready to start painting for the new ‘jungle / animal bedroom’, Ruby is snoozing and Grayson is happy to be having ten minutes of iPad fun. So I have escaped, to put a conditioning treatment on my hair – a mummy need!! Ruby is full of cold and roasting hot so it could be a long day today, so grabbing these precious ten minutes whilst I can.
So Grayson might have Dyspraxia, and possibly ADHD. These are the initial thoughts of my sister who is qualified as a SENCO in school. Preschool have already confirmed they have concerns, well at least they confirmed this when I raised my concerns. Having that conversation was massively hard, part of me was so relieved that they were seeing what I was seeing and part of me was devastated. I’ve had a week to get my head around this, and now I’m all about getting support, a diagnosis, or not, and moving forward on this journey. Thankfully Katie can do the same assessments that the SENCO at the preschool will be doing, so I feel we are slightly ahead of the game in that aspect. This means I can endlessly google, read anything and everything and add even more to my Pinterest boards! Probably will also worry myself silly, but hey at least I feel like I am making some progress. next step is to have the SENCO come into his pre school setting and then refer us on. The other route is the medical route, so I have made an appointment to see the Health Visitor to get this ball rolling too. Hopefully we will then get referred to the paediatric team. It seems its a long winded process whichever route you take so its a case of having fingers in a lot of pies. There is also the option of a private route, so I am investigating that too. I just cannot stand the thought of potentially a two year process, when we could be moving forward and getting him help and support now.
For now I just have to take a deep breath and stay calm when we have a melt down, or run out of M&S directly into the carpark – yes that happened today, and all the other things that happen daily. Its so hard to know what is direct naughtiness and what is not entirely his fault. This is going to take some getting used to, and I cannot wait to learn some techniques to help me deal with the behaviours and struggles that he seems to have. He is such a bright little button, and is so funny and loving. He is my perfect little man, just maybe with some differences from other children, thats all. I love him to bits, he truly makes my heart melt, ok he makes my blood boil at times and frustrates me like crazy, but thats all part of being a mummy I think. We’ll get through this in our own way, we’ll figure it all out and find a way, I know we will. It just all feels a little unknown and raw at the moment. My heart hurts.
So this morning on the ridiculously long journey to Pre school, don’t even get me started on the A1, Grayson was asking for music. So whilst sat going nowhere, I found Justin Fletcher’s (Mr Tumble to most of us) album on Spotify and popped it on. It was the cutest moment, Grayson transformed from sleepy, slightly cranky three year old, to bright, happy, excited singalong child! He sang his way through The Wheels on the Bus, Head Shoulders Knees & Toes and many more. He was oh so happy. It made my heart smile. Music is truly amazing, the impact it has on our moods is incredible, it makes no difference how old we are. It’s truly powerful. So thank you Mr Tumble (not sure I thought I would ever be saying that ) for making our traffic jam super fun and smiley, and for uplifting our morning. Grayson went to school a happy boy and Ruby was full of smiles too.