It has been about the baby steps and the smallest of noticeable gains and it continues to be that way. I would say that Grayson has adjusted to being back at home but that is really more about him not having to continually be confused about where he is and who the strangers in his face all day are. I don’t think he ever got to where he was very adjusted to life in a hospital. The trick now is to remind him about parts of his journey to fill in some gaps without stirring up any of the agitation, with our practice and new skills this isn’t something we should be stressed about, but we are.
My approach has been modeled a little after the clinicians I have been observing who have shown themselves to to be effective with Gray. Very matter of fact, very clear in the objectives, forthcoming about the nature of his deficit and the necessary “practice” tasks and the need to constantly be reinforcing and assertive. But as a father, not the clinician, I have this other role that I was not nurturing, the unconditional love, the statements of such and the warm embraces that are not around successful completion of tasks but out of sheer love for my son, in whatever form he is currently embodying, without judgement or any other form of well-intended coaching. But Betsy can. And I am drawing strength from that woman to become the husband and father worthy of such a family group.
The care team is coming together and services are being slowly tracked down and cornered, we have structures and new tasks at home around having things to do, making some of his own choices and recording the events of his days. Friends and outings are his favorite things. Anything that is fun or anything, anywhere with friends have become his most treasured items to record in his “Things” daily log. On a selfish note, those activities are when I get to shower, have down time, ride or otherwise recharge my fuel cell and remove those constant opportunities I seem to find to be so well suited for more practice and the on-going underlying orientation and deficit reminder that is so un-daddy like.
From Grayson and us, thank you, for loving the Grayson that is and for finding time to come over and play with him. He remains a very fun-motivated, social guy and dad still isn’t on the top of the list of funsters.