What It Looks Like
August 16, 2010
A lot of families, as part of the path to diagnosis and treatment, videotape their children's behavioral...quirks, I guess. Tics. Possible symptoms. Just so the doctors or therapists or evaluators can "see" what you see at home.
We've never done that, at least on purpose. Noah's school does a lot of videotaping for therapeutic/assessment purposes, but I've always just INTENDED to capture the normal happy fun stuff. I say "intended" because if I go through old videos of Noah I'm often kind of retroactively shocked by something we inadvertently captured that's like, "THAT. RIGHT THERE. THAT TURNED OUT TO BE THING." Noah tip-toeing across the living room; screaming in terror the first time we put him on a teensy pedal-less baby tricycle; telling some great-sounding story that we would only later realize was little more than an echolalic script.
We're still in insurance limbo. We haven't heard the results of our last and latest appeal, which will dictate whether we get to 1) file a grievance with the state, or 2) finally get a couple months' of bills paid right before filing for YET ANOTHER request for an extension of benefits, bwaaaaaaaaahhhhzzzzzzzbbbtttt etc. I also need to go back to the school district with proof that Noah does indeed regress without extended school year options, and that his fine motor skills are not the only area of OT concern. I also just need certain people to see it, to believe it.
So I've been videotaping him.
This is Noah trying to sit still and watch a movie. This is Noah starting out like any typical, high energy kid, before his movements become less and less controlled and more and more compulsive. This is Noah after I try to curb a single stimming behavior involving his fingers in his mouth, after he's past any point of self-regulation or ability to chill the hell out. This is not Noah performing, or having fun, or being like this on purpose. This is two minutes and 17 seconds of what he's like almost all the time now.
This is Noah without occupational therapy. That's it. This is nothing. This is fixable.
I'm not imagining that two minutes and 17 seconds of our life will magically convince anyone who actually matters to help us fix this, but don't worry. I've got more. Ho ho ho, motherfuckers.* I've got more.**
*Not you guys, of course.
**Not all for you guys, of course. Just this one and then I'll mostly drop it. I'm really just threatening invisible insurance and IEP people with the equivalent of sitting through a 587-slide presentation on a road trip to Mount Rushmore. I AM SUCH A BADASS. MIGHTY TARZAN CHEST-THUMP!***
***Ow, that hurt.