You’ve heard the diagnosis and the treatment recommendations. Your child has apraxia and now you need to schlep her to and from the speech clinic several times a week. Yep, that’s definitely a big change. What else has changed?
In the first group, I asked you to recall your “apraxia story,” last week we looked closely at the definition of apraxia, so thinking about changes in your life is the next step–just as it was when you had a baby—whether that baby is the one who has apraxia or not–you went through series of changes adapting to your new life with baby. You will go through a series of changes as you adapt to life with a child who has CAS.
Go ahead and spend a few moments of your time jotting down a list of some of the changes you have encountered since the day you learned about apraxia. Changes may come in the form of your feelings/thoughts, schedules/time, professionals you encounter, schools/education, relationships with friends and significant others, and possibly your work life. In a group setting, we all talk about these changes for twenty minutes or so.
Now I am going to give you a list of items—go ahead and read over them and mentally pick a few you gravitate towards:
Phone, music (CD, radio) television, Food/drink/cooking, pleasure books, apraxia related books/textbooks, exercise/equipment, photos of friends together, computer/Internet, journal, notebook, paints, paper, camera, pillow, blanket, bed, shopping, scrapbooking, funny show or jokes, gardening….
Whatever you “pick” tends to be your coping style. We all have something we lean towards when the tough get going. And the good thing is, coping with your child’s apraxia diagnosis by slipping away–temporarily–is very healthy. If you find you are having difficulty coping, take a look at this list again and find something you can incorporate into your day–your week. And then do it! In fact, the “homework” for this week’s group is to go and do something just for you, no strings attached and enjoy it! Report back to us and tell us what you did. Re-telling your fun is almost as much beneficial as doing your fun. Don’t believe me? Try it! If you are having a particularly tough time understanding and accepting the diagnosis, don’t lose heart. Seek out a therapist–the counseling kind–and have a little talk. Exploring your feelings and emotions is also a healthy thing to do.
Tomorrow, we’ll extend this group discussion to the stressors involved in having a child with apraxia. And we’ll touch on ways to add a little zing to your relationship with your partner.