Saturday, December 8, 2012

18 months

Isla was technically 18 months old last Friday, but I wanted to wait and post after her 18 month checkup, which was yesterday.  This post is going to be long-winded; I apologize in advance!

We tried for some Raggedy Ann pictures today, but she was not really in the mood.  Ten minutes after I put the camera away, she was all smiles and laughter. 
Here are Isla's stats at 18 months.  Her weight was 21 pounds (27%)  and her height was 30 inches (5%).  We have been waiting for this appointment to see how she has been growing.  At 15 months, there were some concerns about her drop on the growth curve.  We were hoping that she would start a new curve and not drop anymore, but that is not the case.  She dropped in both weight (from 37% to 27%) and height (from 15% to 5%).  She has only gained a half pound and grown a half inch in the last three months.  But at least she is still growing!

Our doctor was concerned about her height and that she is not growing at the right rate, so she wants to run some tests.  Her first thought is that it could be a thyroid problem.  She also says it could be a growth hormone issue, but that is less common at Isla's age.  It could be nothing too; Isla might just  be a small person.  But since she wasn't always this small, there is a chance that there is something causing her growth to slow down.  We didn't do the bloodwork yesterday because Isla has been sick, so we are waiting two weeks before going back in for those labs and her shots.  That is going to be a fun appointment!  =)
Then, the doctor also wants Isla to have a speech therapy evaluation.  I made a list about a month ago with all the words/animal sounds that Isla can say/make.  It was about 15 words/sounds.  But that was a very generous list.   She hasn't added anything new to her list of words/sounds in the past month.  Her actual words that she uses on a somewhat consistent basis are very few, maybe 4-5.  She says "da" for dad, duck and dog.  She says "buh-buh" for bye-bye.  She says "ma" when she wants something, which makes me think she is saying mom or more (or both!).

Part of me wants to give her more time.  (We are still paying the bill for all her physical therapy!)  Eighteen months seems a little young to start therapy already.  Maybe she is just going to be a late talker. Her receptive language skills are really good.  She understands everything we say, she points at things, she follows instructions, she interacts with us, she is very interested in copying everything Audrey does lately (video of this coming soon!).  She is most definitely aware of and participating in her world.  Her intonation is great.  She gets the right tone for many things (like counting to three or saying ready, set, go or knock-knock).  Often you can tell what she is trying to say by her tone; she just doesn't make the right sound.
I have been doing some research and reading about speech delays.  Everything I read says to start early with intervention...the earlier, the better.  It won't hurt her to be in speech therapy.  It can only help.  So why wait?  I just don't know.  Having an evaluation at least won't hurt anything.  We are going to talk to the doctor more about it at her appointment in two weeks.

 So....I worry a lot about Isla, can you tell???  =)  I never worried about Audrey like this.  I just can't shake the feeling that there is some underlying condition or something that is going on with her.  I can't tell if this feeling is mother's intuition or just me being paranoid!   Look at all the concerns we have had about her in her short life:  concerns about IUGR before birth, her brachycephaly and torticollis, gross motor delays with crawling, pulling up and walking.  And now poor growth (technically called failure to thrive!!) and a speech delay.  Are any of these things connected to each other?  Is it just coincidence that she has had ALL of these things?

I know brachycephaly and torticollis can lead to developmental delays, especially if untreated.  Isla overcame those things, but maybe they are still affecting her.  Hypothyroidism can also cause developmental delays, so maybe some of this is related to a thyroid problem like the doctor suspects.  I just don't know.  So I sit and wonder and ramble about it on my blog, because it makes me feel better to get all these thoughts out of my head.  Is anyone out there still reading all this???
In the end, I just want to say that Isla is a sweet, happy, smart and funny little girl.  She is her own little person and she does things on her own timetable.  She has taught me a lot about being patient in just 18 months, and I'm sure she will continue to help me overcome my impatience and worrysome ways as she gets older!


Sheyenne said...

I don't know if this will help, but Gia & Isla are almost the same age (born May 5). Gia is small for her age, too... at her 18 month check up she was 21 lb 7oz and 32.5 inches. Gia's speech sounds very similar to Isla's, as well... she will repeat much of what we say and knows all the animal sounds we've taught her, but on a daily basis, she doesn't use but maybe a handful of those words. We've been monitoring Gia's hearing (because Sean has hearing loss that is genetic), but our doctors, even our specialists haven't recommended speech therapy yet. They seem to be content with the level of speech you described. Also, our doctor isn't concerned about her small stature. I know Isla had some other issues that you mentioned, so their circumstances are different, of course, but I thought it might make you feel better to know she's not the only one on the small side who isn't talking 100 words a minute! :) That said, I agree with you- early intervention can't do any harm! Don't know if any of this helps, but I hope it does! I know its so hard to not worry about your babies!!

Rachel said...

Agreed, early intervention is never a bad thing! Even an evaluation is going to give you good information. The school district I work in offers developmental evaluations for students with disabilities and/or developmental delays, through a program called Child Find, beginning at age 3. The child can be found eligible for services (i.e, speech therapy) through the public school. An outside organization also works with the district to provide evals for children up to age 3. You might want to check with your school district to see what they offer...if it is something that you are interested in. All school districts are required to have something similar under the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA). IDEA provides government funding for the public schools, so you definitely have to go through a public school district to access those services. They are free, but it would be important to do your research on what types of services they offer to a student who is eligible for services. Not that I doubt you would do your homework and check it out:)

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