Monday, April 11, 2011

What IS it? Part 2

I'm practically jumping out of my skin!

This morning M's ABA case director came to the house to observe some of M's difficult behaviors. M qualified for continuing help through our regional center for additional treatment for "challenging" behaviors. These are classified as behaviors that cause harm to herself or others, or harm to property. For example, running off in parking lots or the street, biting, or putting inappropriate objects in her mouth. Our program addresses these behaviors already but now we have extra dollars being contributed that will help take the stress off our own pocketbook.

For two hours I tried to stress M out so that she would have a tantrum and show frustration with me. M was in such a good mood I couldn't incite anything but a whine! I had her performing all her dog and pony tricks.... nothing. The only thing I could visibly show was her putting stuff in her mouth outside. Occasionally she would pat a little too hard for some attention or put her mouth on the case director. I even took away balloons, gummy bears, fruit rollups... she gave them all up without a fuss.

What was truly amazing was that Kat was threading large beads on a string. She was putting small rings on a tippy pole/base. She was building a conic puzzle. I whispered to her to go get her baby for the stroller and she ran to the back of the house, found the baby and ran it back out for us, putting it on the table. This blew away our case director. She said that was "huge!" I think M's program is going to get some new changes because M is beginning to follow multi-step instructions which involve items that she has to search for far away.

Now the clincher... we were outside walking around, giving M the opportunity to run into the street, get messed up in the creek or eat nature. We succeeded in the nature eating part. But the case director said to me that she and the head director of M's program were both discussing M and they both agreed that they didn't think she had classic autism. M was just too social. Most of M's behaviors were attention-driven and this doesn't happen with kids with classic autism. She's too aware of her environment and when things (like her nose running) bother her.

What an unbelievably awesome thing to hear this morning. I can't express the rush of hope that I have coursing through my soul. Yes, M hasn't changed. She still the same challenging little girl. But to have that monkey off my back is ... is... a long overdue relief.

I'll be spending the day trying not to cry.


Rachael said...

Wow, that is fantastic news! And, isn't it funny how they can be on their "best" behavior at the most inopportune times?

Anna Scott Graham said...

WOW!!! Man oh man, what news! I've been keeping you all in my thoughts and prayers, goodness gracious! Will continue to do so, as this is fabulous news!!!

Ronda said...

Wow from here too. Just catching up. What a amazing gift. Here's to all the progress you've made with Kat.

A Room to Grow said...

Wow, amazing! Thanks for the update!