Saturday, October 1, 2011

Ryan's Switch & Button

 Okay, so these aren't the best pictures but I thought you might enjoy seeing what Ryan's "switch" and his "Yes" button looks like. 

The blue thing laying on the towel across his tummy is his finger switch.  With just a tiny bit of movement from his hand, he can trigger a response. 

In the top picture it is hooked up to the big yellow button.  The yellow button is then programmed to say "Yes."  It can be recorded to say anything.  (When Daddy was traveling a lot to Boston, Daddy left a message on it to say, "I love you, Ryan.")  We usually place the finger switch  on one side and the button on the other side.  This gives him the option of using either the finger switch or the button.

Since Ryan lost most of his words and his ability to sign, it's been really helpful to have the switch as a form of communication.  He still enjoys having the ability to make choices.

I'm thankful for modern technology and the people who invent nifty little devices like this. I'm thankful for people who realize that even kids like Ryan want to communicate and need ways to tell the rest of the world all that is going on inside of their brains.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

I took Ryan to have his blood work done yesterday.  I'm not sure who I felt the most sorry for:  Ryan or the two people who were trying to get the blood.  It took 4 sticks, and a lot of digging.  Not fun.  Ryan was quite brave about it.

Thankfully, they were finally able to get all of the blood they needed for the tests.  The results should be back in about 2-3 weeks. 

On a brighter note, the school introduced Ryan and us to a "switch" that just requires a very light touch.  If he barely touches it, it activates a button device that then says "Yes."  Thus, Ryan can make choices.

Last night we got home around 5:30 and I was sure that Ryan was tired.  I was tired and he had been poked 4 times.  He must have been tired.  So he was lieing in his bed and I had hooked him up to his feeding pump.  Unfortunately, the feeding pump would NOT work.  I went through all the standard troubleshooting that normally makes it work, but nothing would make it work.  Eventually, I had to call the technician. 

While we were waiting for him to arrive, I put Ryan's switch next to him and said, "Do you want to snuggle with Mommy?"  He didn't respond.  "Do you want to get up?"  No response.  "Do you want to watch Sesame Street?"  He said "Yes" with the switch.  I thought, "Oh that must have been a delayed response." 

So, I started over.  "Do you want to snuggle with Mommy?"  No response.  So, I repositioned his hand on the switch and showed him where the switch was at and also the big button.  I said, "Ryan, you can use the switch to say Yes or you can push the button."  And, then I asked again, "Do you want to snuggle with Mommy?"  Still no response.  I again showed him where the switch was at.  Wow, he must be really tired, I thought.  "Do you want to get up?"  No response.  "Do you want to watch Sesame Street?"  He quickly said, "Yes" with the switch and then hit the button about 5 times.  "Yes, Yes, Yes, Yes, Yes."

Could it have been any more clear?  So, he watched Sesame Street.  I guess I wanted to snuggle, and he wanted to watch Sesame Street.  Hmmm....