Friday, March 07, 2014

Speech! Speech!

Sometime before Christmas I asked the Babies Can't Wait coordinator to assist us in scheduling a session for Ruby with the Speech Therapist. Scheduling issues and snow storms got in the way, but we were finally able to meet with her last week.

Of course I've been reading up on things to do with Ruby, and we've been working on some oral 'exercises' before feeding to help stimulate her muscles so they can perform at their best. But I was looking forward to having a person come see what Ruby does and tell me what we're doing right and wrong.
Ruby tolerated the first session pretty well. The ST asked if we'd been working on signs and I told her we had: mostly "more" and "please". No response from Ruby yet, but when I was demonstrating how I sign with Ruby, she totally nodded. Never before have I seen that (and the therapist is my witness that Ruby was very intentional!). I asked her, "Ruby, do you want more?", and the girl looked at me and slowly nodded 'yes'. Crazy!

The second session was a little harder, as we asked Ruby to do more in the way of working for the food. We've been placing puffs and cut up fruit towards the back and side of her mouth; this is to get her tongue more involved in moving the food around in her mouth. (Never a resting moment for Ruby!)
Unfortunately for Ruby, we had another session the day right after her second speech therapy with Babies Can't Wait. When I ran into scheduling issues originally, I tried to line something up with a private therapist and local mom, and the two sessions just ended up next to each other on the calendar. This session was more on communication and OT, whereas the Babies Can't Wait sessions have been more about feeding and strengthening the mouth. Both VERY important and necessary.
During this session, Ruby fought back and was not so happy. I don't blame her though; it was a LOT of work, all at once. We worked more on signing ('more'), different feeding techniques, and then we worked on her pincer grab. That is something I haven't focused on at all, but the therapist said that Ruby is old enough now to not grab her puffs with her last three fingers; she should be using her first two now. That made Ruby very upset. We then did some play therapy, and when the therapist left, Ruby slept for almost two hours. Tired girl!

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