We have seen tremendous improvement in Hayden’s cognition since we began. Even though we had previously worked on his primitive reflexes, we made that a part of our daily work again and I’m glad we did! One of the biggest improvements we have seen from that is in his eye contact: previously when he would speak to you, he would look at you but he wasn’t actually looking you in the eye; it was like he was looking just beyond you. I believe that was due to his fight-or-flight response being on all the time. The starfish exercise has helped him be able to actually look eyeball-to-eyeball and it’s really exciting to see! The sound therapy has also been huge: his sleeping at night has drastically improved (we have been able to cut down on his need for melatonin to get to sleep by 75%) and his math sense has greatly increased. He went from “4 + 4 is 44” to adding 4-digit numbers on paper, regrouping, and without the need for manipulatives! He still attends speech therapy once a week, but I’m still not noticing improvement with his speech. In addition, he’s been seeing an occupational therapist once a week that he began around the same time as we began Equipping Minds. That has resulted in significant improvement! I feel like the combo has resulted in much greater and quicker improvement than even I expected (his therapist is shocked at the speed of his progress)! I believe the Equipping Minds program put his brain, and therefore the body, in a place where he could receive information and actually do something with it. He can now tie his shoes and jump rope, and his executive functioning has increased by leaps and bounds! We are seeing the frequency of his meltdowns dissipate and his planning ability takes shape. It’s like my soul has finally exhaled and taken a deep breath to see him accomplish things that were previously locked up inside.
It was interesting for me to note that he sustained a mild concussion about six weeks ago and, as to be expected, we saw a lot of regression in most areas. Of course, this was demoralizing as we had just put in a solid two months of brain training and had literally in just a week before the concussion began to see significant improvement. After allowing his brain and body to rest for about two weeks, we picked back up with the brain training, though more sporadically (it’s summer, after all!). In about two weeks he was back to about 80% of where he was pre-concussion. That to say, I was encouraged that he hadn’t totally lost his gains and also relieved that I knew how to help him. So I would say we put in a solid 8-10 weeks, concussion happened and we took a two-week break, then we kind of worked on it again for about two weeks, and since then we’ve gone into summer mode. Because we’re finished with our formal schooling for the year, my goal is to build brain training into our new morning routine. Previously we did our work in the evening with dad, but of course, when you’re outside getting things done nobody wants to stop for primitive reflex exercises! We definitely plan to continue on; I believe there are even greater gains for him to make and frankly my brain could use a boost too! The work you are doing is incredibly useful and beneficial and I’ve referred several people to check it out. You have allowed his brain to unlock and do the things I’ve always known he was capable of doing, and I’m so grateful for that. Thank you, Carol!!