About this blog.

My son was diagnosed with PDD-NOS at 24 months. I created this blog to bring meaning to the often-confusing label. Sometimes I have answers. Other times, just more questions.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

What To Expect Age 4, PDD Edition: Sensory-Motor

As promised, a WTE segment on Brad's sensory and motor profile. But first, a "happy birthday" to Brad and a thanks to his well-wishers. He had a nice day.

And now he is four.

We've seen his motor coordination skills improve significantly over the last year. His OT thinks he may be "caught up" on the fine motor side, based in part on his grasp and his pedaling.

There's still something wonky going on though. The "ho-hum" profile still describes him well; the low tone is still there. In the Out of Sync Child, Carol Stock Kranowitz refers to this as the "gravity monster." Well, Brad is four and he's still fighting the gravity monster. Here's another clip we made recently, which illustrates his tendency to lean or flop.

(As an aside, I know, I need to quit my ill-fated attempts at making conversation while holding the camera; Brad is not the only one who has trouble multi-tasking.)

We still do "wheelbarrow" exercises on a regular basis to build up trunk strength. We make it a game: Brad hides his favorite ball, and he leads me to it with a wheelbarrow walk. Not to be outdone, Jeremy plays too.

On the sensory front, the sensory-seeking behaviors at this stage appear to be mostly limited to face-touching. Emotional regulation appears good; he's still our chill little guy; we bring him to restaurants, etc. all the time.

Friday, January 22, 2010

(Not) A Very Special Episode

Just because.

A snippet featuring aspergian character, Abed, from the show Community.

And this.

And this.

And this.

Friday, January 15, 2010

What To Expect (Almost) Age4, PDD Edition: Communication

As promised, a WTE post on speech and communication.

His most recent speech stats are here, but that doesn't really tell the whole story.

I'm proud to report...drumroll please...Brad is talking. Well that isn't exactly news, but it is a fair description of his ability. His progress on the speech front has been slow and steady. When exactly his speech took off is hard to pinpoint. At this juncture, he can express his needs and even his emotions, and his conversation skills are budding. Exhibit A:

And if it isn't obvious, the more he talks, the more he charms us with his sweet nature.

Not to take away from his progress, but there are still many challenges ahead. He's still scripting. Or something. For example, often our exchanges will go like this:

Me: "How was school?"
Brad: "The name of the day is Friday. Friday is a tuna fish day."

That having been said, on the whole, we're very pleased, and proud of his progress.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

What To Expect (Almost) Age 4, PDD Edition: Introduction

I've long complained that there isn't a What To Expect (WTE) book for PDD. So every now and then, I blog about milestones and such in an attempt to distill Brad's experience WTE style.

Which brings me to my next series of posts. With Brad's birthday approaching (he turns 4 on January 22), I'll be writing about Brad's progress in the following areas: speech, motor, social and feeding. This is Brad's PDD trajectory; it may or may not be representative of any other child PDD or otherwise.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

What to Expect (Almost) Age 4, PDD Edition: Engagement

In the coming weeks, I will be blogging about Brad's progress, but this week, I'm blogging about that which has been constant: his engagement.

Engagement is a difficult thing to describe.

I believe that Brad is easy to engage. In fact, several of his examiners (including his developmental pediatrician, his teachers and his speech language pathologist) have commended him on his ability to attend.

But the quality of engagement. It's different. It's not sharp, focused and sustained, like a typical child. You can see it in the videos.

This is the way it's been since he was a baby. I would never say "he's in his own world." But he's not always in my world either. He's somewhere in between, absorbing some pieces of his environs but disregarding others. I think this is part of what's vexing about A Little Bit Autistic. It's in between, neither here nor there.