At Deacon's 9 month check-up his doctor asked us to fill out a questionnaire about Deacon. He scored high in every area except social and fine motor skills. His doctor didn't seem too concerned, but asked us to work with him on getting him to do activities such as waving and clapping.
Over the holidays I became a little more concerned when seeing babies younger than Deacon smiling more when looked at and feeding themselves. Brian reassured me that everything was fine and that he had just been so focused on learning to walk that he would pick up those other skills soon.
Last week Deacon started going to Carson's daycare and by Thursday the director stopped me when I went to drop them off and asked if we had ever had Deacon's vision checked before. I told her that I think they did at the hospital when he was born, but not that I knew of since then. She told me to speak with his teachers to get further information on what they are seeing. Basically they repeated the same difficulties that I had noticed: lack of eye contact or tracking of objects, no interaction with toys or other people, and not feeding himself. They suggested we get his vision tested and I was thinking more severe: Autism.
In between crying spells, I went to work and got busy. I am fortunate to be a teacher because schools have such a wonderful variety of people and resources. I stopped by our nurses office and received information from her and steps to take to get started figuring out the issue.
I called and scheduled an appointment with his pediatrician and another to have his eyes examined. Our government has an amazing program called InfantSEE that pays for eye exams on babies. My friend also suggested contacting Early Childhood Intervention. They are through the state of Texas and do evaluations and therapies on young children who are delayed in some areas, and will even come to your home or daycare to help.
The pediatrician and eye doctor appointments were scheduled for today so Brian and I had all weekend to stress and watch over Deacon terrified of his future. We prayed constantly.
This morning we went to his doctor first and expressed our concerns. He was wonderful and listened to everything we had to say and came up with a plan. Next week he has an EEG and MRI, and we are waiting to find out when his hearing test will be.
Next was the eye doctor appointment. I had no idea how you could even check the vision of a baby, especially ours, who doesn't look where you want him to or track items. The eye doctor was so patient and took her time working with him. She first held up these paddle boards with stripes on them to see if he would track them; he wouldn't even look at them. Next she looked in his eyes with a light. She could tell by the way the light reflected back at her as to whether or not he needed a prescription. She immediately saw that he was near-sighted. She then dilated his eyes and we waited 45 minutes for it to kick in and checked his eyes again. The doctor saw then that he is ALSO far-sighted! Poor baby can't see close up or far away!
We worked to find the correct prescription and then created a practice pair of glasses by taping the lenses to a baby frame. He was so tired by this point, but we were able to put them on and put a toy in front of him. For the first time he tracked it with his eyes and reached for it!! The doctor and I cried together.
Our little guy will be getting glasses and see the world he has been missing out on for the past 11 months!
And will look something like this little girl in 5-10 days when they arrive (except in gray):
We have no idea if this will be the cure for all of our concerns, but we are hoping so. If not, we will face the obstacles as they come.
6 months ago