Vision therapy was just one of our "activities" last week. Here is a run-down:
**Vision therapy @ the Anchor Center on Wednesday 4/8. This was our first visit and I think it went pretty well. Unfortunately, we arrived about halfway into the session due to the conflict of the starting time with dropping Caitlin off at school. The sessions start @ 11:45 and go until 1-1:15. They start off with a snack in the cafeteria, move on to the motor/open play gym, then to a small group discussion time and, finally, wraps up with the light room. We got there just as the small group discussion was started. The topics were--1. What do you know know that you wished you'd known then? 2. How do others in your life (spouse, siblings, parents, grandparents, strangers, etc) deal with your child's disability. There were 4 other families in the group and despite being the only native English speaker, we had a very good chat. Turns out that 3 out of 4 kids also have shunts and one has hydrocephalus. Due to the language barrier, I wasn't able to openly talk with the parents, but we did share the challenges of having children with a condition that the mainstream public hasn't heard of. It was so comforting to know that I am not alone in dealing with Cara's multitude of "delays". I have met very few people, locally, who understand what life is like with Cara. Next, we rotated to the light room and this was, by far, Cara's favorite part of the playdate. The light room is moderately dark and filled with black lights, holiday lights, mirrors and objects of different shapes, colors and textures. They were doing a "color of the day" while we were there and it was blue. Out on the mats were tons of things all having blue in common. Cara loved the beads and these plastic "rocks". She did very well with moving objects back & forth between cups and dishes as well as manipulation several "stations" in the room. At the conclusion of the play date, Cara was given the Teller Test of Acuity by one of the teachers. We learned that her vision is about 20/90 assisted with her glasses. This means that what someone with "normal" vision would see at 90, Cara would need to be at 20 feet to see clearly. The test also confirmed Cathy's findings during the home visit.
**We had vision therapy again today (4/13) and while we started in the Light Room, we also got to go to the motor gym. It was just open play today due to a "Parent Pull Out". They have these once a month for parents. It's a chance for the caregivers to get together and discuss issues and ask questions. I chose to opt out this time as we were very new and I knew that Cara would not cooperate if I were to leave. I am hoping to participate next month, once Cara is more familiar with her surroundings and therapists there. I should mention, that during the sessions, there are PTs, OTs and SPTs on hand to work with the kids.
I am going to go a few more times and then evaluate on whether or not I think the sessions are helping Cara. Hopefully, the therapists will work with her more in the coming weeks, once they get a feel for her abilities and difficulties.