A week or so after we got up here, I started making phone calls to get Simon back into therapy. J, his old Infant Education teacher from Oceanside, had lived up here 5 or 6 years ago and she had given us the names of some companies to contact. After speaking with the one she most highly recommended, I was able to get him scheduled for an evaluation on October 3.
In the meantime, though, it was his second birthday on September 13th. Being so new to the area, we had just planned on going to a park to play and then out to lunch with cake at home. We got a late start that morning because, well, we have 3 very young kids and shit happens. I was in a really bad place at the time with my depression and anxiety, so I was a complete mess, convinced we were ruining his birthday. ((Side note: I’ve written a post about my struggle with depression and anxiety but I haven’t published it yet because… well, I don’t know why. If anyone wants me to post it, let me know and I’ll put it out there.)) We got to the park around 11 and by the time the kids were done playing, there really wasn’t enough time for a restaurant meal before nap time, so we decided to just go home and we’d go out to dinner.
We went out to dinner at the nearby Red Robin. Going out to eat with Simon can be hit-or-miss, but after the move when all we did was eat in restaurants, he was doing pretty good with it. Eleanor insisted we have the servers sing to him for his birthday. He was not impressed.
Then we went home and had cake and opened a few small presents. All in all, I think it was a good birthday, and, honestly, it’s not like he really understood what the fuss was about anyway.
He had his first Early Intervention evaluation in Washington on October 3rd. It held no real surprises for any of us. Simon was pegged as delayed in adaptive living skills, cognitive, expressive language, fine motor, and social/emotional. The only thing he didn’t flag as delayed on was gross motor. *sigh*
Also in early October, our new insurance kicked in and I was able to get both boys into the new pediatrician. George was due for his 9-month Well Baby check and I wanted to talk to the doctor about Simon as well.
Remember when I mentioned that Simon was diagnosed with hypospadias at birth and would probably need surgery? Well, when we switched to Kaiser Permanente when Simon was 3 months old, their Pediatric Urologist said he didn’t need surgery. Twice, he said it. Anyway, Simon still didn’t look right to me, especially when compared to his little brother, so I wanted another doctor to look at him. I also wanted to discuss Simon development since we would most likely need a pediatrician referral for any intensive therapies than were offered through his current Early Intervention company. The doctor agreed with me on both things and referred us to a new Pediatric Urologist and also to Seattle Children’s Autism Center.
Once the referral went through, I called Seattle Children’s Autism Center right away. I cannot even begin to convey the dismay, frustration, and sheer… horror, I think, when I was told that there was a waitlist of nearly 12 months, but they would call if there were any cancellations. I hung up the phone and I cried and I screamed and I ranted and I raved. A year?? A year before my boy could get help?? And this waitlist was just for the initial evaluation, how long was it going to take to get actual help?
I calmed down and started calling other places. University of Washington had a 6-8 month waitlist for evaluations, which was better, but still not thrilling. Simon finally caught a break, though, and a week after first contacting Seattle Children’s, they called back on a Thursday with a short-notice cancellation. Could we be there on Monday morning? Abso-fucking-lutely!
That Monday, the 20th, it was raining heavily and there was a major accident on I-5 involving an overturned semi. Based on that, I opted to take surface streets instead of the freeway. We left at 7 for an 8:30 appointment and only had to drive 13 miles. Unfortunately, everyone else decided to take surface streets, too, and we didn’t get there until almost 9! Plus, poor Simon had gotten car sick on the way and had thrown up all over himself. I was in tears thinking we had missed the appointment and were going to get bumped back onto the waiting list. As luck would have it, though, the psychologist we were supposed to meet with was also stuck in the same traffic and wasn’t there yet, so we were able to reschedule for October 22nd.