First-time parents Matthew and Cathy didn‘t know what to expect during Raine’s 18-month check-up. Raine never answered to his name. He wasn’t communicating at all. He never discovered a favorite toy to play with. And, he didn’t like touching or smelling food, so he wasn’t eating.
The doctor sent them to a neurologist. The neurologist recommended Early Steps at CDTC.
Raine underwent a comprehensive evaluation by our multi-disciplinary team. Mom shares that it was a long visit but she was very appreciative in the end.
The team identified some red flags for autism. A second visit to the neurologist confirmed an autism diagnosis.
The news was shocking. Did they miss the signs? How could they help him? What would this mean for Raine?
Doctors reassured them and reminded the parents to take a breath then make a plan. From that moment on, Cathy became proactive and worked hard to stay on top of the services and care her son needed.
Working with Early Steps
The Early Steps team recommended home visits by an Infant Toddler Developmental Specialist (ITDS). This specialist would help them understand Raine’s special needs. Together, they would create an intervention strategy that would become a part of Raine’s daily routine and set goals to work towards.
Mom watches his therapists intently to learn and mirror what they do. She even buys the same toys they bring so he can keep progressing on his own.
Making Raine’s Goals a Daily Routine
Their home is popular for Cathy’s big Romanian family. She needed help remembering what to do during their daily routine. But what about the rest of the family when they visit?
So, Cathy sat down with Jennifer, her ITDS, to create “Raine’s Rules.” The laminated rule list hangs in the kitchen with a notation they are “to be followed by everyone who steps foot in the house.” The chart tells everyone at home what to do to help Raine follow directions, make choices, behave in certain situations and more.
Mom was excited for his recent annual review with Casey, their Early Steps Service Coordinator. She knew the progress Raine had been making.
Goals Met & Progress Made
The now two and a half-year-old makes eye contact. He follows one-step directions, waves bye-bye and eats chopped foods on his own. Mom can call his name across the house and he’ll answer. A few weeks ago, he even started to love going outside to play on the swing in his front yard.
Raine is making great progress thanks to Mom and Dad’s devotion as well as the support they received from CDTC and the care of their Early Steps therapists.
Raine will be aging out of the program this summer when he turns three. Cathy is grateful for all Early Steps has helped them accomplish so far. And, Matthew is at ease now. They know they have received the early interventions that Raine needs.
About our Hero of the Month Program
Each month, CDTC staff nominate one of our children as our Hero of the Month. These special boys and girls are heroes in our eyes. They show strength, perseverance, determination and a positive outlook while facing great challenges.
Their stories are powerful and heartwarming and reflect the impact CDTC and you, our community, has on their daily lives.
Thank You to
A trip to our Clinic is more than just a doctor’s visit to a child with special healthcare needs.
But, insurance doesn’t cover everything. That’s why your gift is so important.