Thinking back to one year ago this time.
We were 6 months into our gluten/dairy/egg/soy/corn/tomato- free diet and I was still incessantly googling and researching for something that would help my son MeMe.
We were doing Learning Breakthrough every day and not having a fun time of it. MeMe was getting OT, speech, and other therapies in school every day.
I was in contact with several therapists, searching for a clue, anything that would help me help him.
I was doling out several types of vitamins daily, hoping they’d kick in to his brain and give it the nourishment he needed. We’d already taken excess sugar and food chemicals out of our diets so I knew that wasn’t an issue.
In January of last year I came across rhythmic movement training and consequently Susan Phariss’s Have a Ball Learning for ADD/ADHD exercise program. MeMe started on the program and I watched him progress slowly but consistently. We had our ups and downs, depending on how much sugar MeMe consumed daily and he soon learned that he felt stronger and better without the junk food in his system. At this point I reintroduced gluten, dairy, eggs, soy, corn, and tomatoes into his diet and he wasn’t negatively affected the slightest bit.
MeMe was doing so well that once we were done the 3 months the program was supposed to take, we stopped it all completely. About the same time, I canceled all of MeMe’s regular therapies.
In May we were fortunate enough to purchase our own home and so we spread out from an 800 sq ft apartment to a 1900 sq ft home. No more complaints about feeling crowded or claustrophobic.
After a few months, it struck me that MeMe was once again showing signs of the extreme frustration he used to have. So we started up on the exercises again. Immediately he improved drastically and so we stopped once more.
From this point, MeMe was on what I call “the yo-yo.” When we did the exercises, he was fantastic; when we didn’t, he’d be slipping back.
These days we are sticking with the exercises, MeMe says he feels much better and more in control when he does them. It’s obvious from his behavior. It takes him about 5 minutes every other day (or sometimes every 3rd day) and he does them willingly.
MeMe’s sensory issues have never returned after we did the sensory exercises the first few times. Even when we stopped the exercises and he slipped back, the regression was only in his executive function abilities, such as lack of common sense, hyperactivity, impatience, and compulsivity. The only sensory sign that showed he was having difficulty, was when he would stomp up and down the staircase of our new home and the word “proprioceptive” would flash through my mind. We ended up solving the stomping issue but that story is for another time.