These are the days when there is little change and little reward. The balance board is used, tracking sheets, and a system of correcting perceptual skills. Of course, we always start with the brain retraining exercises, and they are becoming easier for Jacob. We work on his gross motor skills with dot dabbers and dot sheets. As usual, he is pleasant and agreeable. We work on eye/hand coordination and visual memory. He seems to be picking up these skills more quickly than most, but I hate to be optimistic. I am aware of how long it takes to put one of these kids together.
Jacob always seems happy to see me. He is starting to reveal his sense of humor, and sometimes he cracks me up. He cracks himself up as well, genuinely pleased with his jokes and humor.
Jacob is on a ski team. He talks about going to Lake Tahoe on the weekends, about his dad working in Las Vegas, and little details of his life, like how his little brother drives him nuts.
I redirect him less and less. He has figured out that he can indeed talk and work at the same time. This is a huge milestone, because it means that he is starting to process information simultaneously, something we must do to read, write, and do math.
Our routine is always the same. I arrive, we set to work, and then we eat lunch. The weather is getting warmer, and sometimes we take a walk in the park to go get our lunch. Day after day, I find Jacob to be a bright spot in my week. One day we arrive at the café and there are three dogs tied up outside. I don’t really take notice, but on the walk back, Jacob frets and grieves because one of the dogs is blind. He has noticed the cataracts in the dog’s eyes and grills me about them. He is very upset about this dog.
I explain to him that I once had a blind dog and that the vet told me that animals adjust to blindness better than humans do, that they have superior senses in other areas and learn to use them. I saw the relief in Jacob’s face and posture.
What a special little boy to notice the things he does and to be so compassionate that he could grieve over someone else’s dog.