Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Explaining my kid to your kid

I just typed this in an email to Caitlyn's new teacher as a way to introduce her to her gen-ed class when she starts in there. When I re-read it, I thought "I gotta share this!" For Caitlyn, her lack of hand control is her biggest social limitation...Hope someone else can use this!!

Tell your child to raise their hand, or stomp their feet. This is a physical action that they can do with little or no thought: an automatic response. Then explain that Caitlyn has to think very very hard to raise her hand or stomp her feet, and sometimes the message gets confused between her brain and her arm/leg. That is why sometimes she might not be very gentle, or might pull your hair. She isn't trying to be mean, her arm/hand/leg just didn't understand what her brain said. If they have every played telephone, you can remind them of how different the message is by the time it gets to the last person. That is kind of how Caitlyn's body works. Her brain knows what it wants the rest of the body to do, but the rest of the body doesn't always listen.

You will see that she puts her hands in her mouth a lot. She doesn't want to, and she would stop if she could. The problem is that her hands just don't listen to her brain! Sometimes you might see her wearing braces that kind of look like casts on her arms. This is to help her brain focus on something other than telling her hands to stop.

Caitlyn loves hanging out with friends! She likes to play out side! She laughs when it rains Ice Cream on "Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs." She is more like you then she is different from you. She even gets mad if I don't do her hair the right way, or put the right clothes on her!