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Showing posts from February, 2010

Darkness and light

My Dad doesn't know, but there are two defining childhood occupations that he introduced me to that were relatively critical for defining my own decision making and problem solving style. Oddly, both occupations happen in the dark.

The first occupation occurred within the (dis)comfort of the confessional. Sacramental reconciliation was an opportunity for self-reflection and getting back 'into good grace.' There was a ritual to the process that happened in the darkness of a closed and tiny booth - each week you had to 'face' the priest who could not see you and all the while pray to God that he did not recognize your voice! My favorite aspect of this was when you would say, "For these and all the sins of my past life I am sorry." It was such a catch-all point of relief - it was instant absolution no matter what. I wish my own kids didn't have to miss out on that feeling of having a 'clean slate' but this is not the way reconciliation is pr…

Are we focusing on the best things so we can improve our early intervention program?

The value of anecdote is not in capturing a comprehensive analysis of a system's problems - but rather in making an example of a small issue that reflects a broader pattern. I understand that use of anecdote as a tool can also be fundamentally incorrect or even dangerous but I hope that I have documented enough other information about the early intervention program (in places like here and here) so that this presentation will be honest and fair.

I also understand that any 'for the children' rhetoric causes large swaths of people to immediately tune out of a conversation but it is difficult to frame this discussion about early intervention services outside the context of how it actually impacts children and families. The truth is that the future is a little uncertain about early intervention services in New York State.

Today's anecdotal evidence comes from this situation: one of my therapists had to write a progress report for a child who is enrolled in the early interv…

The dangers of misinterpreting grocery carts when completing occupational therapy evaluations

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During a conversation someone recently described a situation where they wanted to get a cart for transporting groceries from a car to inside the house. It was a phone conversation and I was listening intently, trying to understand what this odd device was that they were describing. They kept calling it a grocery cart and all I could think of was the cart that you use in the actual grocery store - that looks like this:












The conversation moved to other topics but later that day I got an email with the following picture, along with some gentle ribbing "Don't they have these where you live?"















As soon as I saw the photograph I immediately recognized the product and knew exactly what they were talking about - but the point here is that there was an initial block that made it impossible for me to understand what was being described.

First of all, if someone where I live had one of those they would have to push or pull it several miles just to get to the nearest grocery store. Sec…