We had a meeting this week with the Occupational Therapist, focusing on Sensory Integration Disorder.
Before matching, the SWs highlighted that there may be sensory issues for Missy and so because of Missy's needs, they arranged an initial assessment for me and Daddy to see the OT. Prior to the appointment we had to complete a long questionnaire about Missy, detailing how she responded in certain situations - her survival strategies, her attachment behaviour, sensory and vestibular processing, touch, taste, proprioception and her auditory processing.
Her taste and sensory processing interests me a lot. We saw vasts swings in behaviour when one of her pupils was hugely dilated due to eye drops. As far as taste is concerned, she tried a bit of Daddy's home made curry last night that nearly blew my head off. "Yeah, like it" she said, without so much as a blink. She loves strong flavours and has no problem with textures. It's almost like her taste buds are under-developed?
So, we were greeted by the OT in the reception area and she asked if we would like a drink. We both said we would like a coffee so off she went to the cafe just behind reception but came back empty handed. Unfortunately, she was told we could not have coffee in the meeting room due to health and safety! It was feared that someone might get burnt if one of us were to throw the coffee at her!! FFS! Health and safety gone completely bonkers. I'm surprised they allowed furniture in the room in case one of us threw a chair! .
Bemusement passed and we got down to business. She asked us a lot more about Missy and how she reacts in certain situations. I like answering these questions because it's like therapy for us and getting stuff off our chests.
The OT is going to have a good read through all her notes and then get back to us with some strategies. Whilst the Theraplay focussed more on attachment, the OT is going to focus on calming. No mention was made of an actual diagnosis of SID/SPD. A couple of things that she did mention, and which actually Daddy and I know yet had stopped doing, was to treat Missy the age she is acting. She may be 6 but at times she is still a toddler and we need to remember that and act accordingly, particularly when she's having a tantrum - she definitely sounds like a toddler wailing during a tantrum. We need to be mindful of filling in the blanks that previously had been missed from Missy's life. The OT talked about a calm box which I've seen mentioned before on blogs yet never put one together myself so will get that sorted. She talked about rough and tumble which Missy LOVES - something to do with her vestibular system and getting the right messages to the brain. The OT was also pleased to her that I'm learning how to teach children meditation and have tried guided meditations on CD with some success.
So, we await her email and see what she suggests but all in all we came away from the meeting feeling very positive. Once again I remind myself how grateful we are to have access to these support services.