Mom (proudly) "He is six months old today."
Nosy Portrait Studio Photographer: "Why can't he sit up?"
Mom (proudly) "Today is his first birthday!"
Portrait Studio Photographer: "Why can't he stand up?"
Mom (sadly) "But look how nicely he sits by himself."
Mom (confused) "What?"
Pediatric neurologist: "Cerebral palsy. I recommend physical therapy. Come back in six months."
Sixth Months Later
Mom (frustrated) "We trying to help him learn to eat with a spoon. We want him to sit at the table and eat dinner with us as a family."
Mom (angry) "He is two years old. We want him to learn to feed himself."
Private Speech Therapist: "Josh has severe oral apraxia. You need to begin to look for a communication device for him."
Josh Harris now . . .(9 ½ years)
Josh is happy, friendly, routine-oriented, impatient, predictable, persistent, courageous, loving, demanding, easily excited, a busy kid and has a great sense of humor.
Josh has been receiving supports (speech therapy, occupational therapy, physical therapy, assistive technology consultation and hearing itinerant services) in a regular education classroom since Kindergarten 9-95. He uses a DynaMyte (a small talking computer) to talk and a Mac laptop computer to write. He has been able to complete all grade level work through the second grade without any modifications to the curriculum. In August 1998, he will start 3rd grade with some curricular modifications. Josh's education label is Speech/Language Disability with a secondary label of hearing impairment and health impairment.
We learned that Josh has a mild-moderate high frequency hearing impairment so Josh wears hearing aids and uses a FM listening device in the classroom. The teacher wears a wireless microphone and her voice is sent via radio waves directly to Josh's ears through his hearing aids.
About a year ago, we learned that Josh has a tic disorder and several repetitive behaviors. He takes medication for these. On Sunday, July 12, 1998, Dr. Rubinstein confirmed that Josh has RTS.
We are very proud of Josh and his accomplishments. He has tremendous potential and we will continue to do "whatever it takes".
"Even if I knew the world was going to pieces tomorrow, I would still plant my apple tree." Words of faith and hope from Martin Luther.
If you have any questions about Josh or any of the myraid strategies and techniques, please feel free to contact us at:
PamPjh1443@AOL.COM Kevin Kjh1448@AOL.COM Shelley Querida16@AOL.COM (Shelley is 17 and loves to talk with brothers and sisters.)
JoshJosh1443@AOL.COM We are currently working on a Web Page for Josh that will share details about communication, sensory-processing challenges, "couch-potato" tendencies, tics and repetitious behaviors, parent-professional partnerships (both medical and educational) and a few other topics. We will have short videos of Josh demonstrating various communication techniques as well as a bibliography compiled by Shelley that includes over 50 books written for children ages 4-12 that positively portray individuals with disabilities and great links to sites for kids who have brothers or sisters with special needs. As soon as the page is published, a link will become available. (7/98)