Wednesday, January 15, 2014

First School Issue

I have all things Brady to report on.
First of all, he did great at the allergist appointment last Monday. He got a little scared when the allergy panels came out, but he forged through. It turns out he's allergic to molds. Which makes a lot of sense. We live in a very wooded neighborhood, have a lot of mulch and he's rolling around in the grass every day that's warm. We'll stick with his current allergy-med plan (Flonase spray 3 seasons out of the year) and take the advice and tips from the doctor of how to wash better, encase pillows, wipe out window sills, etc. He also suspects his adenoids are a bit big due to the noises he makes while sleeping, but we don't want them removed given his speech issues.

Brady had fluid sitting behind his right ear, so the doctor was happy to know he'd be seeing the ENT with a hearing test in two weeks. So we'll see how that all turns out later this month. It was a good appointment and I was happy to see he wasn't allergic to more things.

In other Brady-news, he's become very... sensitive. We've noticed he cries very easy lately. I don't know how to explain it other than he just really breaks down in tears over simple things. We noticed it really ramped up over the last few weeks.
Well, yesterday he cried having to get dressed for school. He refused to get dressed, so I counted to three and sent him into a time out (not for long because he had to catch the bus!). Well, he was sobbing about the whole ordeal. I asked why he was so upset and he grabbed his iPad and pushed the 'friends' button. I asked if he was having problems with friends at school and he said "YES".
So this lead me on the journey of emailing his teacher to see if she could figure anything out. It's very difficult since you have to ask Brady questions and he really can only answer yes or no (he says "oh"). So while I'm asking questions, I'm not sure if I'm putting the idea in his head or if it's a legitimate issue happening. He answered yes when asked if any kids were mean to him, but no when asked if the teacher saw it.
I emailed his teacher asking if she had any idea of any occurrences or if she noticed Brady's sensitivity lately. She called me directly a few hours lately and felt horrible for Brady, but as suspected, didn't know of any issues he may have had with friends, so she was going to investigate today.
I received a call from Brady's speech therapist during the day saying she wanted Brady to bring his school-iPad home each day from now on so he could communicate with us at home easier (his school iPad has all his classmates and play areas of the classroom on it). She didn't say anything direct about Brady having issues with any other kids, but said she's wondering if his heightened sensitivity may be due to his frustrations with his regression. He must know people are having a harder time understanding him lately. So, for now, he'll have access to both iPads while at home.

Brady's teacher called me after dinner this evening and told me she spoke to Brady. She said he picked out three boys on his iPad when she asked who was mean to him. She asked where it happened and he picked out the 'literacy area' of the classroom. The teacher said he was only with one of the boys in that area, so she directly asked that child in private if he recalled any issues lately and of course, he had no idea. The teacher said she asked Brady what the boys said and she said he looked her right in the eye, lowered his voice and said "HEY" and then he rambled an non-understandable sentence.
She believes something definitely happened that hurt his feelings, but it will be very difficult to figure out what it was. I'm assuming a child may have said something to the affect of "I don't understand you" and Brady took it hard. The kids are at an age where they really don't verbally attack one another yet. The teacher said these boys are actually all very good friends and play together each day, so we're hoping something small was said, and it really hurt Brady's feelings since it couldn't be 'fixed' or 'addressed' right away like most other situations.

In reality, these things will happen, and we want to teach the boys to have thick skin and forge through knowing the name-caller is sad about themselves, but it's a hard line to draw when your child can't communicate to defend themselves.  I mean, I never planned to call someone's parents for name-calling or anything. I want to teach the boys to be strong, confident and to work out their own challenges, but with this unexpected developmental disability, it changes the game. There's this weird fine line I'm struggling with. So for now, I just plan to email the teacher if issues arise and ask her opinion on how to proceed. I feel good about how this first little issue panned out.

While Brady was in therapy today, the teacher spoke to the class and reminded them that if they ever don't understand Brady, they can ask him to use the computer and to try very hard to be patient with him. She told Brady in private, that if anyone hurts his feelings, he needs to tell her right away so everyone can talk about it. She said he responded with "My mommy said that" and she understood him! She said of course she's a familiar listener and it was known context, but she understood :)

In the meantime, I'm supposed to call the teacher at the end of next week to discuss Brady's new heightened sensitivity. She said she wants to see if he gets any better with another week of his regular schedule. We're hoping it's because he's been out of his routine and he's possibly upset that people aren't understanding as well since his regression. I'm not sure what's going on. He came home today and laid on the floor crying because Jax got to the living room first. He SOBBED in my arms about it then. Huh... hopefully this will pass. I have no idea otherwise what would make a child so easily hurt about things. He doesn't get angry or yell, he just turns on these huge tears and looks devastated.

I wish I could just make everything normal and easier for him. We're trying so hard!

Brady during his allergy test. He earned himself a Happy Meal with Mommy on the way home. I'm actually pretty happy to see most of the tests negative, woot!

These two cuddle-buds. And the costume is baaaack.


Momma Bird said...

My oldest is having trouble in school too. He has fine motor and sensory issues. The other day told me his only friend (whom he LOVED) told him he couldn't sit with him on the bus and was no longer his friend. He took it well for the most part and found a new one and then the old friend started trying to take his new friend from him. I finally called the teacher too. We talked with my oldest about standing up for himself etc but it is heartbreaking. Hugs to you!

Amy said...

My daughter went through a period of crying about pre-K this year. Saying no one wanted to play with her, she had no friends etc. Found out during a volunteer episode that it was because she was being bossy and wouldn't play anything other than what SHE wanted. We're working on that...but it's heartbreaking when your child cries about school and friends.

Anonymous said...

I've dealt with a lot of friendship related issues with my girls. Like you, I want them to learn how to navigate these waters on their own, but I have definitely stepped in and talked at length to their teachers. It's hard at this age! The kids are so sensitive, and even the smallest comment can cause tears. I think the more you can role play with them on how to handle things, the better prepared they are.