Thursday, July 12, 2012


Fellow Therapy Moms,

Jon sent me an email this morning with the rest of our summer and fall travel schedule. And let me just tell you: Holy travel WAY TOO MUCH. Although I love it, I was reminded that Jack is about to start a new and exciting adventure in the fall. What is this, you ask?

It's school, people. Oh dear goodness, SCHOOL!! Let's all take a moment to freak out and notice my all caps and exclamation points.

If I don't die of a heart attack watching my little guy head off to his classroom, I will have to try and create some balance in this whole schedule of ours because we may just all go a little crazy around these parts. There is nothing worse than messing with someone's schedule, especially Jack's.

As if I wasn't already feeling the anxious dread of too-filled-up-days, I got a call this morning from Jack's feeding therapist, the one we travel two hours, both ways, to see. We had to cancel the month of July because we are busy doing what we do in the summer time (traveling, hello!). She left a message wanting to talk with me about our schedule and if we should just forgo therapy until fall. She has other patients that she could see on a much more regular basis, during our time slot. This is not something lost on me... heck, she needs to create a good schedule for herself!

All of this got me thinking. How much we can fit in, once Jack starts school? His class meets three days a week, in the morning, for 2 hours. Afternoons are reserved for naptime and for mommy blogging/photo editing/drinking chai/maybe attempting to clean or do laundry or some such thing. That pretty much takes therapy out of the question for those days. We are sending him to preschool because he really, really needs the social aspect of a classroom. Learning to follow directions in a group and what not. That means we are going to try and fit in an additional 4 therapies into our two free days.

Is this even wise? Should we be that busy?

That's where the headache comes in, folks. I don't want all of Jack's free time spent in therapy or in the car on the way to therapy. And truthfully, I am selfishly wanting to reserve a bit of time for what I want to do with our days. But, but! I desperately want him in all the therapy he can receive. How can we balance the two?

I would LOVE it if any of you had some advice for me.


Montana Preemie Mom with a Too-Filled-Up-Schedule
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Jaimie said...

Hey there, I've been following your blog since I found out my son has hemiplegia. I love reading everything you post. Although my son wasn't a preemie I found lost of similarities between your crazy life and mine. Our schedule is also crazy. My oldest is going to start preschool this fall and my youngest (LH) is in the works of OT,PT and more oh and the endless appointments especially the neuro appointments that are 6 hour drive round trip because of his seizures. Blah blah blah. I also am a play date coordinator for our MOPS group here. Oye! What I have found for myself, and from others, is once kids are in school (or in our case even before) life will always be easy. My advice would be test it out with all of it from the start and tweak it around if it's not working. You'll figure out a method that works best for you and Jack.
*by the way, you are a very talented photographer, I love your pictures!

Shannon said...

Hey Jessi! Remember me - she who no longer blogs? I still read and Jack-stalk, 'cuz let's face it - who can live without seeing his cute face?! Anyway - I'm totally looking forward to hearing the answers to this question! This fall we're looking at a six-year-old in 1st grade, a 5-year-old in Kindergarten, a 4-year-old in 4K and my sweet Marissa in Early Childhood. Plus we need to work in 4 therapists, a multitude of regularly scheduled doctor appts for all of the kiddos and oh yeah - work! Then, if there's any time left, maybe some fun? Please, Jessi's faithful readers - HELP US!

Jackie said...

I don't know Shannon, but I feel the same boat! AC starts kindergarten, Ava is in Mother's Day out twice a week, and Alli has 4 weekly therapies, plus the regular trips to dr's appts and now travel to ABM therapies....where does life and work fit in, much less fun time?? Can't wait to hear answers on this one!! :)

Jessi said...

How could I have forgotten to mention all the Dr. appointments?!!! AHHHHH!!!

Jessi said...

Shannon - of course I remember you :) I've missed reading about your kiddos!

and Jaimie - hi! thanks for reading and I absolutely love hearing from you!

Becky P. said...

I am interested to see how to others have managed to keep up with the hectic rat race of therapy...mommy and wife duties...home cleaaning...and for me pumping.....I need to squeeze 30 hours into the 24 in a day. :)

sonja said...

I'm a mom of 28-weeker quadruplets who is struggling with a similar question. They're 2 years old and will start a 2-day program in the mornings this September. Yet each of them sees OT, PT, and speech therapists, and one sees a teacher as well. One possibility (and I'm not sure if this applies in your state) is to have the therapists come into the classroom. I have not decided whether this will work for us, but depending on the program and how it's structured you might be able to at least do one therapy session while in class. For example, our PT could come during the outdoor part of morning and help with playground equipment play (climbing, etc). You probably wouldn't want to do this everyday, but it could be a way to get in a session and not use up an afternoon.

Becki said...

I have 28-week twins, now 2. My little guy was a micro-preemie, due to severe IUGR. We're fortunate that he's outgrown most of his health issues (so we have fewer doctor appointments to squeeze in), but at one point we were juggling multiple therapies with specialist appointments. We found too many therapy sessions were wearing us and Colin out, so we chose to focus on gross motor skills first, and decrease or decline some other therapies. For us, that worked well and we made better progress than when we were trying to make everything work. With our Early Intervention program, that meant we had to wait another 6 months to qualify again for a therapy we had declined, but our sanity was worth it.

You may not feel that's a good route for Jack and you, but it was a good solution for us. (I would wait until you've been through a couple of weeks at school before making any big decisions -- if you can get therapy in the classroom or he starts making progress facing new challenges, that may change what seems right.)

Keep up the good work with Jack. I enjoy following his progress.

Anonymous said...

Although my son wasn't a micropreemie (29wkr), his first 2 yrs of life were full of neuro, gastro, & Dr visits/procedures/tests as well as PT, some feeding therapy, & early intervention. It was hectic for sure. Fortunately, we are finished w/all if that now.

My advice is to have at least one of the therapies, maybe two, happen at school. Like maybe PT & OT. And then have feeding therapy & whatever else on the days when he's home.

How is your sweet boy is doing w/feeding now?