Not long ago I read a blog post from a speech pathologist’s point of view, written to the parents of her young clients. It inspired me to have a go at writing a letter to all of the wonderful parents I work with every day, from the perspective of their child’s OT. Here goes…
Amazing, resilient, patient, strong, parents! So many times you come into the clinic with a heaviness, something that is more than tired, because sleep probably won’t help much. I wish you could see how great you are, and that this could lift your spirit just a little bit! Here are some things I would like you to know:
You are an awesome parent
You are the one that knows your child inside out. You are the expert when it comes to your little person! Sure, I might know about developmental milestones and theories, but you know whether your child needs two or three heavy blankets to sleep, that they need their food separated on their plate or they won’t eat it (and even then they still probably won’t touch it cause it looks wrong!)… The list goes on. Remember how awesome you are, and keep it in mind through all the appointments and professionals, no matter what.
I never, ever judge you when your child has a meltdown in the clinic
Trust me on this one! At our clinic, there is a “no apologies” policy for parents. That means, if your child is not coping that particular day, and maybe they are having a meltdown, you don’t have to apologise for them. I get it. And actually, I feel a bit special that your child feels comfortable enough to have that meltdown in front of me! Also, I really respect parents who have come to me to learn how to manage and cope with some of their child’s behaviour. I get how hard it is to change the way you’re responding to your child. I admire you for sticking with it and giving it a go.
I know how busy you are
And I appreciate all the hard work you put in, running here and there for school drop off, pick up, appointments, swimming lessons, tutoring, therapy, homework, and the list goes on! I try to give homework that can be easily implemented into the daily routine without feeling like an extra burden. So, if it isn’t working, tell me! I promise I won’t be offended. Let’s work together to find a solution that fits with your family’s life.
I am always thinking about how I can help your child
Yep, some of my best ideas for how to help your child come to me when I am driving, or when I am showering, or when I am laying in bed trying to get to sleep! My mind doesn’t really switch off very often, because I absolutely love what I do, and I absolutely love being able to make a difference in a little person’s life.
I feel privileged to be a part of your family’s story
And I hope I have made a positive difference. I always remember the little people I have seen in the past, and their families. Even when they have finished therapy with me, I’ll often think about them and wonder how they are going. So I thank you for choosing me as your OT!
- Tags: autism | children | family | Occupational Therapist | occupational therapy | parents | therapy