As a mother, watching your child struggle is extremely painful. I have three young daughters, but my seven year old has dealt with some unique emotional and behavioral challenges over the course of her young life. On the outside, she has always looked like a perfectly healthy, happy child. However, beyond the surface, our lives have been fraught with debilitating meltdowns and tears as she has been unable to navigate change, discomfort, certain social situations, and a variety of other circumstances both at home and school. We moved from Kansas to Fresno last fall and frankly, we kind of “happened” upon occupational therapy. It was almost a last ditch effort out of desperation. But through 6 months of frequent sessions and ongoing parental support with her OT, Megan Baxter (and a subsequent diagnosis of PVL, which explained her challenges), my daughter is now able to employ the necessary strategies to help herself, and my husband and I have also been equipped as parents to help our daughter live her life in a better way. Even though I am a teacher and have worked with many occupational therapists over the years, before this experience, I really had no idea of the scope of practice of OT. But now I know how broad it really is, and as both an educator and a mother, I will advocate for occupational therapy in any way possible. Our lives have forever been changed by occupational therapy. In fact, I can’t write this without tearing up because I am so grateful, and I know the place we are in now, versus the place we were, is largely due to Megan’s work as an Occupational Therapist. And I will forever be thankful for not only Megan, but for the profession itself.
By: Amy Guerrero