Saturday, January 22, 2011

Hippo Therapy

I never blogged about Will's hippo therapy!

It was great and he loved it.

First I had to find the freakin' place because it was over the "mountains" and since it's more of a country-living thing going on over there I knew I would have problems. That's where the wonderful Aussie man comes in. My navigator, AKA - GARMIN. One of my best birthday presents. He lead me right to Skyline.

Once I found the place I had no idea where to go. There are stables, different outside corrals and a large house. After driving the full circle of the place I parked and found a door I assumed led to the main arena. I was right... it was the main arena, but the totally wrong door. They told me to go around to the other side. I did that -- entering the office and told I still had further to go.

Then I finally found the "waiting room" where 2 other parents were sitting while their children were in a session. Whew. Found it!

I was a little taken aback though because the kids that were getting the therapy were severely "medically fragile" (that's what it was called when I was in school). I forget the new proper term... my sister told me. Anyway, I felt a little bad that Will got a place for the horse therapy while there could be other children who may have needed it more. There's a long waiting list. He can walk and attempts to talk and does not have severe motor planning issues -- but he does have some problems.

Anyway, I had to get over it because I know this is something that will help him out.

After some paperwork they strapped the neat belt on him. It has handles for his therapists to assist him. They did some initial familiarization of the area and brought out the horse. Once on he was thrilled. They walked the horse around while Will sat atop him and kind of got a feel for what was going on with him.

He has a weak core.
He has some defensiveness trying/touching new things.
He seems to have some problems transitioning without thorough instructions.
He loves the horse.
He lacks breath control.
He has motor planning problems.
He is extremely bright.
He seems to know the words but cannot bring them out.

There's more... but these therapists hadn't spent much time with him and were mentioning the same stuff his other therapists had brought up. And they had not gone through all of his history yet. They explained how this type of therapy will be helpful to him, and I'm in full agreement. I think we're working on the right stuff.

When they had to take him off the horse he wanted back on. He wasn't throwing a fit or anything but was expressing that he didn't want to leave and kept pointing at the horses. They had him say 'bye-bye' to the horses and once they were out of the arena he cooperatively walked back to me.

I had Alanna with me. She was overall well behaved, but I think in the future I need to find somebody to watch her... she's too active to hold onto and when I take her into the arena she got upset that she couldn't get down and explore so she was starting to screech out. That has the potential of spooking the horses - not good - so I spent most of Will's session in the waiting room watching from the viewing window. I want to be in the indoor arena with Will so that the therapists can talk with me as his session is happening and my little Lana makes that difficult.

We'll see how things go in the future. Maybe I'll actually get pics on my camera to share.

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