Thursday, October 6, 2011

31 for 21: Siblings and Therapies

Some people will think that having a child with Down syndrome will take away attention from the other children in the family. Parents my think they will not have time to deal with a child with a disability and their typical children. And to a certain extent that is true. A medically fragile child (whether that child have Down syndrome or any other medical condition) will demand more attention, but, if anything the typical siblings will feel more needed. They will more than likely have to help out, and that is great! They will and should be included in caring for their new sibling.  

  Emilia was blessed to be born very healthy, she has no major medical concerns. What she does have is a very busy schedule of therapies. For the past three years our Early Intervention team have been literally part of our family. On almost every day of the week she was either being visited or attending a group session.

Schedules have been arranged around Miss Em's therapies. During the summer we did things after PT. We went to the beach after Speech. Grocery shopping was done after OT. 

And it's ok! It works. You just make it work. It becomes second nature.

I can speak for my kids and say that since Em has taken her place in our family, they have almost never had a gripe about her therapies interfering with their lives.  Sophia did ask that we reschedule Miss Em's speech when it fell on her birthday, but other than that it's been pretty smooth. It's actually been a learning experience for them. When they are home , they partake in the therapies, they learn new techniques to use with Emmie. They play with her in a way that she will learn more and be more interested. They know how to walk with her up and down the stairs, they know to sit facing her when playing or reading as it's more beneficial.  They work on the things that her OT is working on.  Without even realizing it they have incorporated her therapies into our /their every day routines.

Here is a great video of Andrew playing soccer with Emmie. Without even thinking he has adapted the soccer game so Em can play with him. He's having fun , she's having fun and she kicked the ball! 


The VW's said...

Great job Em! And, great job big brother! Every sibling should have a sibling with Ds, or special needs! They learn compassion and love in a whole new way! I believe it is truly a gift that they have been given.....a gift that will last a lifetime, filled with knowledge and sensitivity that others may never know!

Thanks for the e-mail! :)

Erin said...

My daughter loves to take part in Lucas's therapies too. And like you said they learn their siblings limitations and help them excel. Love the video.

Twilson9608 said...

I agree. Having a child with special needs hasn't taken away from my older two children, in fact I think that I am more loving and patient because of her. I think it has also made my older daughters more accepting of others. She is the best-newest edition to our family!

Bulldogma said...

Looks like Em is going to be a soccer star someday... provided she can fit soccer practice in with all her ballet classes ;o)