I am currently sitting at a therapy clinic in Villa Rica, GA. Sometimes great things are done in obscure places ;)
Anne will be here every day for the next month undergoing her traditional summer session of intensive Thera-suit therapy. Everything about this therapy session is good for Anne. It stretches her in every way – physically, cognitively, emotionally, even spiritually.
Here’s a progress report on Anne:
- She’s grown to almost 5 feet and weighs 89 lbs.
- 2 years ago (before puberty), she was walking with a cane. Now at 13, she struggles to support her weight when standing. Walking more than a few steps tires her out.
- Anne still does not use her left hand, but her right arm is so strong that she can beat everyone in our family at arm wrestling (well, maybe not Eric – but she comes close!)
- In the last month, Anne has started having convulsive seizures. They have probably emerged because she has outgrown her current dosage of seizure medication. We’ve increased her medication, so hopefully, we’ll see these seizures diminish.
- Anne’s reading has improved tremendously this last year. She can track and read short sentences without assistance. She can read long stories with assistance in tracking. She reads with more emotion and fluency. She still only reads 1st/2nd-grade level readers, but her improvement is so encouraging!
- Anne’s attention has improved slightly, but she still struggles with focus, attention, and impulsivity.
- Her middle school teachers really pushed Anne so that she was able to do 5 minutes of work independently. This is a huge step for Anne!
- Anne’s hormones are irregular causing her to be emotionally volatile. Her anger outbursts are sudden and intense. This is our biggest challenge with Anne currently. It’s difficult to know how to prevent the anger outbursts, how to handle them when they happen, and what consequences to enforce after the outburst passes. It’s hard to know what Anne can control and what she can’t. I need wisdom to discipline her appropriately when her anger spills out to hurt others.
- Anne also struggles with restlessness – causing her to make mischief to get attention. Hopefully, intensive therapy will help with this!
As with any child, Anne has struggles and triumphs. I am reminded daily of my own inadequacy to care for all of my children. I desperately need God’s wisdom and direction as I work to parent, shepherd, and train my kiddos. I’m thankful for Anne’s a-typical challenges. They force me to lean more deeply into Jesus – trusting him moment by moment.