Monday, January 11, 2010

Transition Time

When Grace came home in August of 2007 we were almost immediately referred to our County's Early Intervention (EI) program. EI is a program that is designed to work with kids under 3 years old and their families. Grace qualified for weekly Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Speech Therapy and Special Instruction (basically a Special Ed Teacher) and Vision Therapy twice a month. So for the past 2 years and 4 months we have had at least one and as many as 7 hours of therapy in our home for Grace. It has been both great and challenging. It is difficult to explain how intrusive yet wonderful this program really is to someone who hasn't experienced it.

This is Grace's final week of EI. She turns 3 next week and will age out of the EI program. This is a bittersweet time for me. On the one hand, I am ready for the in-home therapy to end. It has been wonderful getting to work with the amazing women (and one man) who have worked with Grace. Most of her current team has been with our family for over a year, and some pretty close to 2 years. They have seen us through some very dark days when we saw no progress with Grace at all. They have sat with me while I cried over the Rhett's Syndrome diagnosis we faced last year at this time. They have laughed with us as Grace began to do silly things and enjoy being tickled. They have celebrated with us the fact that Grace learned to walk and is showing signs of talking. But I'm ready to have my home back. To have some normalcy put into our family life. Also, when we started this journey over 2 years ago, I was convinced that Grace would graduate from EI instead of age out. I was positive that she would reach all her goals and begin functioning typically in this time frame. Instead, she is being transitioned to the 3-5 Intermediate Program and will be starting school within the next 2 weeks.

So this is Grace's final week of in home therapy. In the past 2 years Grace has had a total of 10 different therapists or teachers working with her and we have had over 450 hours of therapy in our home. We have liked all and loved most of Grace's team. We will miss her current team of Ashley, Walter, Melaina, Tracy and Ruth. I thank them for loving my daughter and supporting my family.

(Oh and by the way, I'm not able to process the fact that my daughter will no longer be with me every day, all day long so I'm ignoring it. Which I'm pretty sure is not the healthiest way to deal with a HUGE transition like that but that's what I'm doing. Feel free to ask me how that is working after I put her on the bus next week...)


Hannah said...

What a milestone! You are going to do great and so is she next week.

Lund7 said...

I remember having EI workers in my home from the time my son was 2 weeks old until he aged out and moved up to the next phase of education. Putting them on the bus the first time is difficult...they are so little! You'll do fine...eventually and after some tears.

By the way, your children are just beautiful! Good luck next week. Look forward to hearing how it goes!

Gardenia said...

It's a big transition for sure. but Grace has come a long way, and so have you ! next week is a new beginning. And God's mercies are new every morning. bless you ... (my daughter's bday is jan 22)

Cheryl (FTC) said...

Anne....I can so totally identify with all of your feelings.....having transitioned Isabella this past September (3 months shy of her third birthday). Some days I love not having the service providers in our home, and some days I miss that part of the process and the people themselves terribly...but it is all just a reminder of the fact that a beautiful little girl is Isabella and your Grace. Take care, and email anytime!