Tuesday, June 17, 2014

My little Hug Monster...and ST update

Rhys has been attending Speech Therapy through the Development Centre this year (yes, finally something worked in our favour from our pediatrician!) and the ST has finally finished up her testing. As she was doing the last of the questions, I realized that what she was asking from her book weren't necessarily speech related. (Such as: listen to my instructions then follow, point to the cat, then point to the dog....or point to the bear that is beside the cat....or out of these three pictures, an apple, an orange and a ball, which two are the most alike and why?) I thought that was curious. I wasn't bothered because I figure the more testing that is done for him, the better! (if you remember me mentioning them before, the Centre for Child Development is a huge organization that deals with children of all types of special needs. We tried to get Rhys into their preschool, but it never worked out, and our pediatrician got him in for ST this year, so this is a good group to be connected with while we learn about Rhys' delayment) 

At the end of our session, she said that she will go over his results and then call us and we can find out "which area he is weak in" (her words.) I already told her that he has always struggled with being able to follow two or three instructions (ie: go to your room and get your shoes and bring them here. He gets lost after the first instruction.)   I am curious to the results, because I wouldn't have thought those to be "speech" type questions, as much as they are problem solving ones. But I did have a friend tell me that it is a part of language comprehension and they were standard assessment questions, so that does make me feel a little less confused. We'll see what she says!  We are running out of time though. We had to miss two months of ST due to either Rina or myself, or both of us, being sick. (stomach bugs were running around for a long time earlier this Spring. It was horrible!) and once Rhys starts kindergarten in the fall, once again, he will be phased out of the program! *sigh*

Another thing that she mentioned made me a bit sad though. She wants me to go over with him his hugging. Rhys is extremely affectionate! He loves to give hugs to people he knows and will give multiple ones! (he hugged the ST a good 3 or 4 times today, lol) She wants him to learn to NOT do that, but to give high fives or handshakes instead, which of course made me sad. I understand WHY she thinks this needs to be really pushed (he needs to learn social boundaries and personal space, etc) but I was also sad, thinking that this is part of his enthusiastic personality. Funny thing is that she was reading my mind because she added, "we don't want to stop him from being "him" and change his personality, but he needs to learn boundaries." Rhys loves to give hugs and kisses! His preschool teachers and Sunday School teachers and our friends don't mind, but I guess eventually we will meet people outside of those places who won't like it as much. (the ST mentioned how some kids in kindergarten may not like it as much....but I was thinking that he doesn't actually hug other children, lol!)

So yeah. There's that. It's a bit sad that it has come to this. My affectionate child needs to be less excited when seeing people! I'm hoping that I can convince him that teachers would rather be high-fived or even fist-bumped instead!!!So far, he remembers sometimes to stop and ask, but mostly it is done randomly and so quickly that I can't catch it in time.

Once, we were walking into the high school to pick up the boys (they hang out in the library after school with their friend, since his mom is the librarian and they can play on the computers) and Rhys was running on ahead, giggling. There are some kids sitting outside at the front doors, two girls in particular that I notice, and I just KNOW what is going to happen.  Rhys pauses for a moment, spins on his feet, and runs over the closest girl and flings his arms around her! This of course, makes her jump as she wasn't even looking in his direction! It made me laugh, to be honest, knowing how huggy and sweet he is, but I also felt bad that I didn't get to warn her first! I tried to call out "random hugger!" to the next girl, but it caught her by surprise too! After he was finished hugging these girls, he ran away just as fast and kept on going into the school!

This boy makes me smile!  So far, no one has been upset with his hugs. (although, one day he was going around and hugging all of Abi's friends after school and one, who is not much of an outwardly affectionate person apparently, refused to respond to his open armed invitation to a hug. He waited, standing there with a cute grin, arms outstretched. But eventually moved on, unphased. Some progress!)  I can't help but think, "Who wouldn't want a hug from this kid? He is just so sweet and enthousiastic!"  But I guess eventually we will find someone who really doesn't like it. And, as much as it makes me sad to think about it, I need him to learn personal boundaries now. Hugs are cute from a preschooler, but not so much from a grade three'er or a grade seven'er.  Okay, let me rephrase that: hugs are great from everyone, no matter the age. They just are awkward when it is one sided and abrupt and from strangers. 


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