Lisa: Infant Occupational Therapy
I LOVED Molly’s first occupational therapy session! We went yesterday for 1 hour and it was SO encouraging! The first 10-15 minutes the therapist asked me lots of questions about what brought us to therapy and when we were talking, Molly was able to explore the facility (it looks like a kids gymnastics auditorium). I loved that he was giving her time to warm up to her surroundings before jumping in.
As we were talking about what brought us to occupational therapy, he started linking different behaviors that we always assumed were normal infant/toddler behaviors, such as:
She’s never been good at self-soothing, when it comes down to training her to do something new, like falling asleep on her own or weaning from bottle feeding we have to use the cry-it-out method because nothing else would work
Once she transitioned to solid foods, meal times were always a battle. Not until we weaned her completely from bottles (at 12 months) did she actually take to self-feeding. Most meal times we would have to force her to open her mouth and insert the spoon OR we had to entertain her with singing and dancing to get her to eat (yes, this was truly entertaining to our neighbors)
She has never been one to put toys or objects in her mouth like most of her peers
She won’t allow us to brush her teeth…she sees a tooth brush and she immediately clams up
When you lay her on her back, she tends to (still) have a startle effect and doesn’t know how to roll over on her tummy
To our surprise these are all connected! He explained and demonstrated how all of these things have to do with the sensory system and (this is a VERY simple way of explaining it) when she experiences something new or “scary” she puts up a block wall which can result in crying, pulling away or just shutting down….the problem is that she’s missing out on all this great exploration!
I loved every second of it because it connected the dots that since she was born there have been pieces to this puzzle that we finally solved! After one session she already picked up on things that he was teaching her…I look forward to our weekly sessions and helping to teach our daughter a new way of looking at things!
After learning all this information, having another baby doesn’t sound so scary or ridiculous- lol!