Tuesday, March 6, 2012


Whew...where to begin?

 It seems this last year has thrown me in to a tailspin ever since Chase started school in the fall.

To very briefly summarize, he was coming home so stressed all the time.  Chase was just not Chase (even so his kindergarten teacher from last year, said).   After exhausting effort and trials of this, that and everything in between, I finally pulled Chase out and started homeschooling.  He has been very happy at home but still very nervous over any change of routines.

When all of the chaos from school was at its peak, I took Chase to our pediatrician.  I discussed my worries and concerns about his anxiety, etc.   Chase has always been different, but not in every way.  And his differences have always added spice to our family.  I think its safe to say that everyone loves Chase and he, though stubborn, is a delight.  But as I was reading a book on asperger's syndrome, I noticed Chase exhibited many of the traits associated with it.  I wondered if he had it.  His pediatrician referred us to the children's hospital.

Over the last few months, we have been going to appointments and he has taken many tests; Speech, social, behavior, vision, sensory, and endless questionnaires. That's a brief summary.

He tested very well on all social cues and making eye contact, which contradicts asperger's and autism.

Finally on Thursday, we found out that Chase does have SENSORY PROCESSING DISORDER.  Basically, his brain is so wide open, he is super sensitive to light, sound, and well, everything!  He gets overstimulated easily (much like a baby does), and he doesn't handle stress really well.  Even small changes can cause him to melt down.  Also, because he is so sensitive to sound around him, it is hard for him to separate, for example, a class room full of noise, and the teacher teaching up front.

The benefits are that Chase is a great visual learner.  Because he is easily stimulated, he is also a very fast learner.  He can do things for hours and hours without ever getting sick of it- like reading and researching.  He can get in the zone and really work hard for a kid his age.

We are so happy to FINALLY know why Chase reacts the way he does to change and certain stresses. He has a great occupational therapist who has given us such hope that Chase will learn to compartmentalize all the stimuli and live a very normal life.  He believes that the treatment (and homework) we are doing, Chase will outgrow these challenges.  We definitely have a lot of work ahead of us and worries over the financial aspect of it  ( insurance won't pay), but these appointments have already taught us soooooo much-- I know we just have to find a way to do this for Chase.  I have faith that we are doing the right thing and that we were led to the right place.

And right now, I am just so happy to finally know...
I just want my little boy to be happy!


Alison @ Oopsey Daisy said...

So grateful that you were able to find answers, Melissa! What a fantastic mother you are!! I taught a little boy who also had sensory processing disorder so I am very familiar with that. I have no doubt Chase will be able to take on these challenges especially with the great support of your family. What a cute boy!

Karin said...

I'm so glad you were able to find out something! What a relief that it is something you can work on with him and that he can be helped. Love you all!