AGE ~ 2.5 Diagnosis – Down Syndrome
Darcy was born 5 weeks prematurely by emergency caesarean. He was 2 days old when he was diagnosed with Down syndrome. After riding the rollercoaster of emotions following Darcy’s diagnosis, what we really wanted to know was how we could help our little boy. There was no clear or easy answer and we searched to find some positive stories that fitted with our way of thinking.
When Darcy was 5 weeks old, we were lucky to be handed a copy of “That’s Life” magazine with a story in it about Kristen and Gryffin Morrison. We ordered Kristen’s Naturally Better book first and then subsequently the IAHP (Doman) books.
We started our IAHP program from the “How Smart is Your Baby” book, purely as a means of improving Darcy’s vision. When Darcy was 5 weeks old he was diagnosed with cataracts in both eyes. His cataracts were extremely dense and he was learning to see through “frosted glass”. It was urgent that his cataracts were removed so that he had some chance of being able to learn to see properly. At 11 weeks of age he had surgery to remove the cataracts and he has worn contact lenses in his eyes since that time. Following Darcy’s cataract surgery, his vision was slow to develop and we knew he was seeing very little, if anything. This was when “How Smart is Your Baby” became our bible. At 5 months of age, Darcy had no light reflex at all. Within a few weeks of starting the visual stimulation program we saw a light reflex start to slowly develop. Within 2 months we saw Darcy start to follow a light. I will never forget the joy of knowing for the first time that our baby could see.
We decided that if the program could help with vision, then surely it could help in other areas as well. We worked our way through the various activities and programs in the “How Smart is Your Baby” book and were excited to see Darcy first start to crawl, then creep in perfect cross pattern and then begin to walk while all the time watching his vision improve. In addition to the IAHP program, we also implemented a regime of natural therapies including Osteopathy, Chiropractic/Kinesiology and Naturopathy to help with Darcy’s overall health.
In June 2013, I attended the IAHP “What to Do About Your Brain Injured Child” program in Melbourne. I was somewhat hesitant about attending because we had already been doing so much of the IAHP program with Darcy at home. I wondered whether I would really learn anything new that I had not already read in the books.
What I gained from the Melbourne program was so much more than I could ever have imagined. I left the program in Melbourne having completed a thorough evaluation of our little man and having developed a much more individually targeted program – while at the same time understanding why each part of the program is so important for brain development.
Darcy is now 2 years and 6 months old. We have been undertaking our new program for just over a week and already we can see a change in Darcy. He is much more alert; his verbalising is occurring with much more frequency, he has used some couplets (he only had single words before) and he is walking approximately 400 metres in a session (we started the week barely able to do 40 metres in a session).
Without ever having spoken to Kristen Morrison or the staff from IAHP, they (through their books) helped us experience the joy of our little boy being able to see. After attending the program and meeting both Kristen and the IAHP staff, I am filled with inspiration and hope for what other great things our little boy can achieve in the future.