I like to go back and read the 25-page report.
It’s written in a medical, matter of fact tone. Large sections of the report are highlighted and my wife has written comments in pencil on several of the report pages. I read it over-and-over again and I remember the intense fear and worry we shared.
The report gives a full medical history, lists the tests the doctors gave and how my son fared, who was present, and finally a summary and recommendations. I’m barely a page or two into the report and my head starts pounding.
“(My son’s name) is still fairly young and so, needs intensive work in reading. He needs to be taught the basics, phonetics, and decoding skills.”
When I get to this next part, my reading slows. I pause after every couple of words to take them in and ponder their meaning in my mind. They pack a powerful punch.
“However, we are not very optimistic about his ever acquiring these skills. The time will quickly come when we need to focus on circumventing the lack of decoding skills. He most likely will do better at sight word recognition and working to expand this skill. Also, he will need to begin using technology to essentially read and write for him.”
My breathing is deeper now. If I close my eyes, I can remember the doctor’s face when she handed us her preliminary report at the end of our visit.
“He will have trouble reading stop signs. He seems to be a strong listener, but he’ll never be able to enjoy a book, other than maybe a picture book, or function as a normal adult.”
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