Child of the Month: March 2013

IMG_0800Melanie: March 2013

From my first interaction with Melanie I could see that she has a sense of adventure that cannot be rivaled…or stifled! Melanie’s curiosity brings her into many a unique situation, but it is her ingenuity & problem solving skills that really astound me. When she has her mind-set to do something she will think of any clever way to complete that task; she is very determined. Her determination presents itself in all aspects of her life even in her consideration and love for those around her. Melanie wants those around her to know she cares and many times she shows this in her helpfulness. She likes to help out with the chores around the house, and her mother turns these situations into opportunities for therapy in home.

Melanie has global developmental delays and hypotonia (low muscle tone) which presents itself in her gait. Like so many of our families, her care is in the fore-front of everything they do. This February, her father returned from his 4th tour, a very exciting moment for Melanie and her family. When her parents discovered her delays they knew that therapy was the way to narrow the deficit. With this need for continued access to medical care, specialists and therapy, her father re-enlisted into the army to ensure Melanie got the care she needed.

IMG_0804Darling Melanie receives physical therapy and speech therapy at UCP-OC working on progression of age-appropriate language and motor skills. Pati , SLPA, works on language skills.  She has done an astounding job facilitating 3-5 word sentences, descriptive words, transitioning from one activity to another and preparation to sit and attend in school. Beth, MPT, UCP-OC physical therapist, has been working on incorporating playtime into Melanie’s physical therapy sessions.  This is due to the extensive stretching that Melanie requires in order to improve her posture and alignment.  UCP-OC physical therapist Beth works on strengthening, stretching, balance, gait, body awareness and safety.

Melanie’s mother says that therapy is a family activity at home. Her brother John and sister Abigail push and encourage Melanie to meet them in the activities that they are doing. Melanie’s strong sense of purpose, spunk and determination help her get there!

If you would like to make a gift to support the services that are helping Melanie and her family please click here or contact Elizabeth Wylie at ewylie@ucp-oc.org for more information

Written by: Elizabeth Wylie

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