I don’t really know why we are here, but I can try: My husband and I had a beautiful baby boy named Cameron in 2000 and by 2005 we were worried we would never have the opportunity again, when lo and behold, I got pregnant and got a call from a friend about a baby boy who needed a home. I always wanted to adopt, it’s part of my socially responsible nature, (did I tell you about the time I brought home a rat I found in a trash pile that was close to death, due to a run in with a trap, but I thought for sure we could nurse it back to health) but I didn’t know if I could carry another pregnancy to term. Charlie came to live with us when I was 10 weeks pregnant and I couldn’t have been happier. He was a beautiful baby, he was my constant companion as I shuttled his five-year old brother to school and karate and swimming. Seven months later his little sister, Coco, was born and we packed up and moved from Dallas to Las Vegas. I still have a fortune from a cookie I got when we first arrived in Vegas to enjoy the coming months. I did. It was great to have babies and take them places, love them, play with them. And our oldest seem to slip seamlessly into big brother role. Sure, he had his moments, but he was so generous. A really great trait for an older sibling.
As Charlie got older we noticed that he was a handful. Or even two handfuls. As many hands as you had around full. He was constantly on the go, on his tippy toes, like a shark in the water investigating everything. He would pick it up, shake it, possibly break it and be off to the next thing. He would seek smells. He was always eating lotion. We thought he had pica, or paste eating syndrome. We moved back to Dallas just before he turned two and made a beautiful cake for his birthday that looked like a tube of Aquaphor.
We started him in school about the time his brother started in school but he didn’t really seem to like it after a time and he was so young we didn’t want to push him. We tried school the next year and he didn’t like it then either, but by that time we realized that something was wrong. I read about sensory integration disorder and it sounded so on the money! Rather than have him in school where he couldn’t make it and was always in trouble, we pulled him out and started him in occupational therapy. We have had him in and out of OT (occupational therapy) now for over a year. He still has no preschool skills to speak of and he will be 5 in six months. Wow!
It’s not that I think he’s not bright, he really is. He has a great vocabulary and in some ways I worry less about him than I do about my other kids. He has a terrific sense of direction. He knows the neighborhoods where we live and where other people live. He knows sharks, all the kinds of sharks. He is so self motivated and sure. He really has the “I can do it myself” attitude. I think about the Waldorf method of education and know that there are kids out there who don’t start manipulating symbols until they are older and they are reading and writing on par with their peers in time. But is it because they can’t do it, or because they don’t want to, or both? Should that be part of the equation? Does it matter?
We are having him tested and so far the neuropsychologist thinks his trouble lies in executive function – or ADHD. She also is looking at possible dyslexia because he is most definitely dyspraxic. I look forward to her diagnosis. She has had him for testing for about 4 hours. She has interviewed his OT. I hope that is enough.