Special Sub-Group: Early Intervention
Updated: Jan 7
When we gave birth to our boy/girl twins, we had no idea that their older sister was about to be diagnosed with autism. We also had no idea that in 18 months time, our twins would also be assessed for autism by the Regional Centre, and that for a few months we would be considering the potential of having three special needs children in our family.
It was during this time that I realised we were part of a very special sub-group of parents, who were not only learning how to parent multiples, but also learning about Early Intervention. For anyone who is unfamiliar, Early Intervention begins when a child doesn’t seem to be hitting their early milestones. Often some extra therapy will help get them back on track, and sometimes it will lead to a special needs diagnosis. Either way - it can be a shock to the system; and joining a group and getting advice from experienced parents is 100% the best way to start navigating this new world (and all its confusing terminology).
This is why WLAPOM set up the Early Intervention Sub-Group on Tinyhood. We encourage anyone who is going through the process of Early Intervention to join the group and share any questions/concerns regarding your child's development and the resources available for all conditions and diagnoses. We also ask any members who are speech/occupational/physical therapists, or who work in other relevant fields, to please join the group if you can..
There’s an analogy that’s shared amongst special needs families (called "Welcome to Holland"), where the experience of having a special needs child is likened to a vacation mishap. Instead of arriving in Italy, we are instead sent to Holland. The concept is cute, and provides comfort to lots of people, but I think it's perhaps misleading. It seems to me that all parents are on a constant journey, full of surprises, and that there really is no perfect “destination” to get to. Whether your family has special needs, or not, perhaps the best thing we can do is to look around and see who is travelling with us; and to celebrate.
Please join/follow the WLAPOM early-intervention sub-group here.