Being an Occupational Therapist to someone with Down Syndrome is a fine balance of challenge and reward. Carolyn Myles (Occupational Therapist MEd, OTR/L) was assigned to Blake as part of the early start program in our county. He was 3 month's old when she came into Blake's life and I have been grateful ever since. She is a knowledgeable practitioner who truly cares about your child's success. We have received customized care and guidance from here and amazing tips and tricks for activities that cater to Blake's strengths, likes and to address his challenges.
Carolyn & I
She has agreed to share some of her wisdom and experience as it pertains to the Down Syndrome population and Blake!
I have often met these children as young babies, and watched them grow and develop. To me they are first and foremost children with their own personalities and temperaments and my goals are the same as for all children; to reach their highest potential.
I had the pleasure of meeting Blake and his family when he was just a few months old. He was always social and charming, and very early on showed his opinion regarding his likes and dislikes! For example, he loved books and would sit and turn the pages, but resisted the transition from a bottle to a sippy cup (many were tried!) and would throw it across the room!
Blake is quite the “sensory seeker” and the “art” of therapy with him has been to provide opportunities for him to have his sensory needs met so that he can use his body appropriately to develop his gross and fine motor skills. He enjoys climbing, and “crashing” and all kinds of active play.
At home now he enjoys being outside and wandering around his garden. Now the emphasis is on providing natural opportunities as he wanders to engage and explore – such as digging in sand or mud, drawing on his easel or on the ground with side walk chalk. The goal is to provide as many opportunities as possible to work on Blake’s motor skills in the most playful and natural way through his every day routine. Blake continues to have strong opinions and likes and dislikes! He responds best to peer modelling and is lucky to have his older sister Kaleigh as his very best therapist.
With the support and advocacy of his family, and appropriate therapeutic support when needed there is unlimited potential for what Blake can achieve. I feel so privileged to be a small part of his journey.