I did warn you that our summer got a bit more boring once we were back from Cornwall and day 19 was a fine example of that. Mr C returned to work after a week off and I headed out with the kids to a local drop in Speech and Language Therapy session. Today was the day that I needed to tackle one of the first of the contradictions that came out on the first day of the summer, when I met with Master C’s nursery to discuss the problems we’re having.
They felt that there may be a need for him to have some speech and language therapy, something which really surprised me. Master C’s language is, I think, about 9 months behind where Little Miss C was at the same age. I’d put much of that down to him being a boy, a second child, having an older sister who talks a lot and them just being different people. It certainly hadn’t concerned me at all. Until now.
LMC started talking and walking, confidently, just a few days after her first birthday. Master C started walking at pretty much the same time, but his speech has been much much slower and I frequently wonder whether much of his frustrations come from not having language to explain himself or get what he wants. We talk and read to him loads, but I’d just assumed it would come in time. What I hadn’t really paid much attention to was the way that he doesn’t always complete or start words fully. So “bus” had become “bu”. LMC had never done that, but Master C certainly does. Nursery felt this was a concern, along with the fact that he just didn’t seem to say much at all whilst here, so they recommended I take him along to a new local drop in Speech and Language Therapy (SALT) session which our NHS has set up in conjunction with the local children’s centres.
The idea of these sessions is that if you have any concerns you just take your little one along, the team assess him quickly and then decide if he needs a referral or not, and if so they take it from there. So much more convenient than getting to see a HV or GP first, getting a referral even if it might not be needed and taking up a slot that another child could have needed more.
What was good was that Master C completely engaged with the SALT team and showed off exactly what I know he is capable of. Along with his sister he played nicely, said lots and repeated back words that were said to him. They acknowledged that he doesn’t always start or complete words fully, but the sounds that he is missing are ones that not all children have until they are 3 – 4 years old, so I didn’t need to worry right now. A huge relief.
It was really useful to be able to talk to the team there though and explore with them other areas associated with his refusal to eat, and they gave me some other good pointers of things to explore further which I’m still following up now. There are times when you just want to say a huge thank you to the NHS and local children’s centres for having drop in sessions like this which are not only convenient to go to, but make the services that they have so much more accessible than they often seem.
So, after coming away from there feeling very relieved and somewhat clearer headed too the rest of the day passed rather simply. A trip to a local playground, stopping to pick up some milk and then home to a mountain of laundry that we were still working our way through and for the kids to reacquaint themselves with all the toys that they’d forgotten we owned whilst away. Sometimes simple days really are the best.