We met on Thursday with the coordinator for Tennessee’s Early Intervention program, which will provide Lina with regular evaluations, goals and any necessary therapies from now until her third birthday. Anna was lovely and so helpful in laying out realistic goals for Lina’s first year. We will meet with her once a month to review Lina’s progress and revise or add to her one-year plan (called an IFSP, which stands for something I have not yet learned) as needed. As an extra bonus, Anna turns out to be pregnant and seriously considering a home birth. We had plenty to talk about.
The first time we met with an Early Intervention contact to begin enrolling Lina, I came away feeling pretty down. I was being confronted again with the fact that our daughter is likely to struggle and fall behind, and it was hard. I felt edgy and sad the rest of the day.
This time, though, I found the appointment to be encouraging. Anna answered a lot of questions and helped us understand what would be realistic to expect for developmental milestones for a child with Down syndrome in the first year. It was exciting to think about Lina learning to sit, crawl, feed herself, maybe even say her first words. Anna was happy with Lina’s development so far, and I came away with a renewed confidence that my little girl is going to rock at a lot of things.
We’ll hear next from the teacher who will be our bi-weekly contact (probably going to weekly as Lina gets a little older) to provide the actual developmental support. I am looking forward to the appointments and feel grateful that we have access to these resources. And man, is it awesome that they come to the house. I like to think these are people Lina will really get to know as she grows, and that she, too, will look forward to these appointments.