So the newest and probably nicest thing we are doing is this new vision therapy program that we started with Elizabeth recently.

I know I told you about the evaluation we had and that the doctor was going to get back to us with the results of the evaluation.

So that happened:

And he told us that Elizabeth, due to her dyspraxia, sees things as a whole, meaning that she sees something like a new word. She sees the whole word, and makes a decision in her mind about that word as a whole. Her eyes do not flow over each letter to then try to sound it out. So if she doesn’t know the word, she will replace it with another word that starts with the same letter.

I have always known that people with dyspraxia memorize the English language as they learn to read, not really learning to decode it or sound it out, like I have seen my oldest and youngest did as they were learning to read.

Imagine?! Memorizing the English Language? WOW!

He then said that she does this same kind of thing when she sees anything. Such as multiple choice questions. They are looked at, quickly decided on and then she answers.

She doesn’t take the time (what we thought) to slowly go over each choice (what we try to teach her) to think about each choice and decide (what we learned is related to her eyes)

It all makes sense now. I know we KNEW lots of things about the way she bends the world to fit her disorders and I know we SAW lots of ways that that bending fell just short. But to have it explained in a way that makes it so very clear was…well, quite wonderful, actually.

He also asked us how she did when we played a game, such as how able or how much of a struggle was her ability to move her game piece the correct amount.

I told him that she did great….at first, then as the game progressed, she would become antsy and grow in irritation. Not always, but often enough.

He explained that the work involved, for her eyes, and they way that they worked to help her brain, made that S-L-O-W tracking of the game piece very hard work for her. So each time it is her turn, the work feels more like work.

WOW ,again.

It all fit together.

It makes even more sense.

He told us his plan for her, but not before telling us that “Given the depth of this issue for Elizabeth and given that she works so hard for the gains she made to this age of 24”

And here is the best words said....

“She blew me away with her vocabulary. I held up flashcards of words to see how she did. She just blew through them! She is so smart!”

We loved this!

We always knew this: Saw this in so many ways. Watched her succeed even as she worked harder than most to do it. But to hear it from someone who doesn’t know her at all is just……LOVELY, WONDERFUL AND AFFIRMING!

So after more talking about results, He gave us the plan for Elizabeth. “Like OT (occupational therapy) for her eyes.” is how he put it.

We met with the vision therapist 2 weeks later and got our actual exercises. We were told to do them once a day for 20 minutes.

I will fill you in on them next week and tell you how it is going.

But I will say this.

Elizabeth wants this! And because she does. It is infinitely easier to enjoy this work time with her than hearing the words I wrote at the top (title).

She actually reminds me each day.

WOW again.

I wish everyone a peaceful week!
Michele Gianetti author of I Believe In You