I consider running a home therapy program a lot like running a business. I know what you do is tough stuff: you organize, you recruit, you train, you stay on top of paperwork, you track progress, analyze data, and create new team goals. That's only a fraction of it. Its a lot of work, I get it. I always tell parents, once they reach the end of their home program with their child they will have amazing CEO skills!
As tough as it is to do all the ins and outs of parenting and running a home program, its easier when we remember why we do it. For our child/ren. We sacrifice a lot, so that we can do the best we can for them. One day perhaps there will be a program out there that can accomplish what you can at home in your playroom - maybe - but think about what you are asking someone else to do.
- Know your child inside and out, including sleep schedule, sensory preferences, dietary needs, ever changing motivations, etc.
- Put your child's needs completely above their own agenda including other children.
- Have no expectations, but the greatest hope ever.
- Be so committed that they will do whatever it takes to reach and teach your child.
Listen if you know of such an organization who can promise this - let me know I'd love to see it. I'd love to create my own center that strives for this one day. However with legal insurance requirements, IEPs, school politics, it is difficult to get the level of care from anyone that you could get from a loving, committed, parent (and team) at home.
I know teaching your child at home is not the easiest thing to do. I know you sometimes feel isolated, and definitely in the minority. I know because I'm doing it myself with my own preschool girls. Other stay at home Moms do exist, but amongst the norm, we are rare. Then obviously there is a difference between being a stay at home Mom and running an autism home therapy program, suddenly those one-on-one hours become a necessity instead of a desire.
The best news about an autism play-based home therapy program though is that more hours of play therapy add to a childhood instead of take it away. The other good news is that with a home therapy program there is help at home - you just have to find it! Autism is a hot field right now and young professionals are craving experience with children with autism. Connect with a local college, university or even a high school and see how you can help these students gain invaluable experience and influence the future field of autism for the positive all while getting free quality help for your child. (You can also tap family, friends, and willing volunteers looking to make a difference) If you feel you need more help training your team - that's what I'm here for. I'll back up your expertise to your team and help customize your program with techniques specific to your child.
While staying home to teach your child through play may not be the mainstream thing to do, I will always agree that its the best education you can give to your child until they are ready to handle and enjoy school. If you can really get behind your decision to stay home with your child than that will free you up to also really enjoy your time playing with and teaching your child. Of course being organized helps with this too. When you find great strategies for that, send them my way. (Oh speaking of which, research bullet journal, its an easy system to keep yourself on task, although you may need a bigger calendar ;)
Okay, I better go back to being a Mom now, my few moments alone are up, lol. One of my girls is always hungry.
Email me if you need anything, I'm not sure when I'll have extra moments to blog again.