Expectations. Even when you think you don’t have them, you do. They’re there, lurking in the background. Waiting for their shot to bite you in the ass.

BamBam’s evaluation for developmental preschool through the district was ten days ago. It went well, everyone there found him irresistibly adorable and, more importantly, I walked away knowing that he would qualify for the special autism program as well as the developmental preschool. Done. Check. Now all I had to do was wait for him to turn three at the end of November and I would have a little time freed up in the mornings four days a week. Except one of those days I have to figure out how to keep him in his music class, so it will really be three mornings a week of free time. Oh, and it will be good for BamBam, too. It’s not all about me. I am pretty excited about that free time, though.

I didn’t think I had any expectations beyond that, which I guess is why I now have a sore ass with a chunk missing out of it. In hind sight, pun only a little intended, I think I was expecting the results of the evaluation to sort of wink at me, finding that, while BamBam is slightly delayed developmentally, he’s not that far behind and will catch up easily with the help of the school. I know that’s misguided and naive. I know it. I just didn’t know I was thinking it until the school psychologist called with the results on Friday.

Well, maybe I was a little aware. I had, after all, told a few of his therapists that I was afraid he wouldn’t qualify for the autism program.

But I was in no way prepared to learn that he scored in the 1st percentile cognitively.

BamBam came out of his OT session just as I wrote the above. His OT was gushing about how many words he was saying today. I told her I was really glad to hear that because of the cognitive score. She told me not to pay any attention to that. The score only means that he wouldn’t answer their questions and we know that’s because they don’t have a rapport with him. That’s true and I know it. It’s just hard to see that number. They couldn’t possibly be talking about my kid.

And here’s another thing: There are side-effects to sertraline (my antidepressant). I knew that, but I have been on it for a long time and never experienced any, so I assumed I wouldn’t. I guess that was because I was on such a low dose because I am certainly experiencing them now. The funnest part is that they subside for a few days until I up the dose and then they come back with a vengeance. I looked up the possible symptoms and I have almost all of them. Especially the head pain. Right now it feels like someone is trying to shove my left eye under my right eye.


Well, that was Monday and it’s now Thursday, so I’m thinking I need to get on with it and post this.

I’m feeling better physically and emotionally. The side effects seem to be waning and several therapists have now told me that BamBam’s cognitive score is skewed because he wasn’t familiar with the people administering the tests. He’ll get the services he needs and that’s what matters. I never did all that well on standardized tests either.

While I am feeling better, it’s not enough to make me go up and fix the abrupt transition from BamBam to drug side-effects. I think you guys will get it and just follow along as is. That’s my expectation, anyway. 🙂

And because you are so cool that way, here are some pictures of the boys from Halloween:

BeBop was Zeke the Zebra (a ZooPhonics character) for his school party.

Zeke with his backpack on his way to school.

BeBop and BamBam as Diego and Baby Jaguar respectively.

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5 Responses to Expectations

  1. lunarmom says:

    I think you guys will get it and just follow along as is.
    We did, and are. Have a beautiful Friday.
    I’ll be in Washington by dinner time. And thinking of you. 😉

  2. Of course we get it and follow along. Particularly since our brains skip along like that too! Totally cute pictures of the boys! I miss those ages. Your assessment of Bam-Bam’s skills is more accurate than those tests. You are with him, you see what he can and can’t do, you witness him interact with others, so let that score go. As long as he is getting the help he needs, you’re good.

  3. I am diggin the diego and baby jaguar soooo cute

    also, as you know and your ot said, q and a testing by a stranger in a foreign and quiet room is an artificial scenario that doesn’t always reveal ability. i had a severe-executive-function-impairment student (adhd so awful that the psych said you couldn’t even call it that) and when the district person tried to eval him, the kid was totally focused in a silent, undecorated room with no distractions….total false results. So I’m guessing that ot is right–bambam was out of his element and clammed up. ignore those results except to rejoice that they got him in the good program and you can get a dang cup of coffee three mornings a week without severe stress and guilt!

  4. Lulu says:

    Ditto on the fact that you know him best. Sparky knows him, his OT knows him, his music teacher knows him. Test scores give you the ammunition to demand the services he needs and deserves, and any professional worth their salt knows how seriously to take them (or not).

    My child scored abnormally high (for him) on speech/language testing at age 4 and showed as ineligible for services, and the SLP (who met him once), said she saw he clearly needed services and would override the scores with her “professional judgement” to get him what he needed. We dealt with a school psychiatrist who reviewed his testing records at 7 or 8 and was “pleasantly surprised” because he didn’t know whether he was going to meet a kid who could do things like speak or follow an instruction to raise his hand (this is a child who people meet and don’t necessarily know that he has developmental and cognitive difficulties. They just think he’s kind of an odd kid).

    What you know in your head about the meanintfulness of the test scores is right. With luck, you will be able to know it in your heart, too.

  5. BarbN says:

    WEBS. They will get better results later. It sounds like a great program, yay! And I’m glad you’re feeling better.

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