Tuesday, October 8, 2013
31 for 21: Therapy is Everywhere
"So, what's new this week?"
"Clapping. Max is all about clapping. It's his favorite."
"He's clapping already?"
"No, no, he's not doing it himself. But he loves it when other people clap..." and as I ramble on about how adorable Max is when he tries to grab onto clapping hands, I realize that our therapist has lost interest. No, that's too harsh. She's still listening to me, as a friend and mom, tell stories about my son. But she's realized that this story isn't for her--there's no milestone to check off.
That's why we have physical therapy once a week. And it's why (even though I like our therapist and mostly enjoy the sessions) I sometimes resent it. As a mom, I notice Max's personality emerging. Our therapist notices his development.
Last week at our library's storytime the librarian brought out a parachute at the end of the session. The parents fluffed it up and down slowly, and the babies watched in awe. Seriously, cutest little photo-op ever. They loved it. Max sat tall, and watched the colors move down, and then up, up, up over his head. He raised his chin way up, and he didn't fall over backward. It was the same movement he had practiced in PT, and I grinned thinking, "This is good practice." And immediately I hated thinking that. Because really, what can be happier or more carefree than a bunch of babies watching a floating parachute? Of course it's learning for all of them, but who wants to ruin it by thinking about that?
I am incredibly thankful that we've got someone coming into our house to do this work. But that doesn't mean that I can't get fed up with the relentless necessity of noticing how all the little parts of a normal childhood are just therapy in disguise.