Yesterday was the long-awaited appointment with the school doctors service for D. My GP had referred me to them after us asking for a referral to occupational therapy on the recommendation of the school.
D was a mixture of excited and nervous about the appointment. He asked what it was about and I explained that it was trying to get him some help because of his funny hands. His fingers have hyper mobility, which basically means they bend in ways they shouldn’t! His knuckles look like those of an old person riddle with arthritis. He is not in any pain with them, but he has problems with his fine motor skills, which is why at his end of year meeting last term, they had suggested the referral.
I wasn’t looking forward to it, as I thought it was a box ticking exercise to see if he actually needed to see OT. Their waiting list is at them moment about 6 months, so I imagine they are doing everything they can to only make sure those that really need to see them get put on the waiting list, which I suppose is understandable.
The appointment was at 10:30am, so it wasn’t worth putting D into school in the morning, just to pull him out again less than an hour later. He therefore made the most of winding M up as he headed out to school!
I managed to time it right getting there so he didn’t have too long to wait before the doctor came and got us.
The first ten minutes were spent talking about family medical history, and my pregnancy with D. I was getting a little annoyed by this, as D was getting agitated by the time she seemed to notice him. When she said his notes were missing and she only knew about his diagnosis, and his referral, I was flabbergasted! No wonder she needed all the background information.
She then had D doing some block building and peg placing to see how his hands were coping. She agreed he was having some difficulty.
Then the nasty part started as she had him up on the bed and manipulated his hips, knees, and ankles, until he was almost in tears. She then repeated the process with his arms. The poor wee man was holding it totally together, but I could see the discomfort he was in. This went on for a good 20 minutes.
She then had him running up and down the corridor. Then walking foot in front of each other as if on a tightrope. It is only when you are observing things like this, and someone asks if things are always that way, that you see things that you don’t notice everyday! D couldn’t put his feet toe to heel, as his feet splay to a ridiculous degree, it is what my Dad would have called ten to two feet – as in if he was stood on a clock face that’s the time he would be pointing to! Also his bandy knees were pointed out. I know when I try to cut his toenails, he can’t straighten his leg at a forward facing angle, but just took it as he was being awkward! I don’t think he will every stop a pig in a passage anyway!
She then did his height and weight. I stopped her before she started on this, and said I wasn’t prepared to discuss it in front of D as he was already becoming paranoid about his weight because of bullying and comments at school. To my surprise, she was quite understanding! I said if she needed to talk about it, I would do so over the phone or at an appointment when he wasn’t in the room. She said as long as we were monitoring things then she was happy with that – I did however hear the “for now” that wasn’t actually spoken!
After all this D sat down, and half lay onto my lap, he wasn’t happy, but was keeping quiet.
She then said that there was quite a plan of action she wanted to discuss with her team as to moving D forward. Firstly she said she would refer him for physio which would help him to be moving his problematic joints correctly. She will also refer him to OT as there are definitely things they can do for him to make his life easier. Lastly though is the slightly more worrying thing, and that is she wants him to been seen by orthopedics to have his joints properly assessed. She believes he has hyper-mobility definitely in his knees, and probably in his hips and ankles, and his arms need to be checked as this is probably be why he refuses to lift his shoulders.
It was a whoosh of information!
She will see him in 6 months to see how he is getting on.
As we came out, he just let rip about the things she had done to him, and how he didn’t like it. I’m sure he will remember this when we do go back! We didn’t head back to school, instead, I let him run his anger off in the park. He would have achieved nothing had he attended for the afternoon.
I put my hands up and say I was wrong to have been annoyed at the GP not giving me the referral I had asked for. If we had of just gone to OT, then the rest of his problems would not be in the system.
I feel so sorry for the wee man, as he copes with things with little or no complaint, and yet you see that he struggles. I of course feel guilty for the times I shout at him for dawdling, as I now believe there is a reason for it other than laziness!
It is moving forward, and as always, doing things to help him cope better it always the priority.