April 23, 2020
Blaire Marie tilted her head, smiled and let out a giggle when she saw her Easterseals occupational therapist on the screen for the first time. She is used to meeting with her in person weekly at daycare. When the virus sweeping the nation caused many of Easterseals services to shut down, the therapists jumped into action. Shortly after, Blaire Marie and her therapist were reunited, through a screen, during Teletherapy. Blaire Marie greeted her therapist with a “Hey,” her favorite word these days.
“I can’t speak highly enough about the Easterseals team,” Stacey, Blaire Marie’s mom, says. “I like Teletherapy because I feel like the therapist is instructing me. It helps me understand more about what they are working on together. I like the interaction I have with her therapist. I come with questions and she has the solutions.”
Blaire Marie, who was born three months early and later diagnosed with cerebral palsy, has been receiving occupational therapy with Easterseals for four months. When she started, she was not able to sit up, was not reaching for toys or clapping. In that short amount of time, Blaire Marie has mastered many of her goals.
“When we received her diagnosis, I was scared because I did not know what was to come,” Stacey says. “When we started with Easterseals, the therapist started pointing out all the positive things I did not notice. She made me turn my thoughts around. She reminds me how smart Blaire Marie is and that she is a bright light in the room.”
April is National Occupational Therapy month. Easterseals’ team of Occupational Therapists collaborate with each family to focus on their specific goals. For example, goals may be, handwriting, cutting with scissors, and learning hand-eye coordination. Goals vary depending on the age of the person and their specific needs.
It has been just about a month since Blaire Marie started receiving Teletherapy. Stacey and, Blaire Marie’s dad, Chris, have seen an incredible amount of growth. They already noticed Blaire Marie’s ability to hold herself up with more core strength and is also helping to feed herself – even if it gets messy sometimes.
“Celebrate what seem like the small milestones to others that are big milestones for your child. Celebrate the positive and the blessings,” Stacey says. “Don’t focus on what they can’t do. Focus on what they can do and celebrate that.” Chris adds, “I know Blaire Marie will surprise us with her abilities. Stay positive!”