The Pandemic + Luca

The COVID-19 pandemic has no end in sight. It’s been a rough few months for him ๐Ÿ˜ฆ Unfortunately, it’s impossible to explain why school was suddenly cancelled, therapy temporarily ended and why he is just stuck at home with his parents and brother! Luca didn’t leave the house once between March and May. His first outing was a road trip to Ohio for Memorial Day weekend to see his Grandma and Grandpa! Thank goodness that’s his favorite place to go – other than the beach ๐Ÿ˜‰

Luca also discovered this tongue on the road trip! Look at this thing!!!

My dad was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer around that time, so that’s what spurred the trip. He wasn’t feeling so well, but he still managed to take Luca on his favorite tractor, golf cart and four wheeler rides! When he wasn’t able to, Grandma took over! This boy LOVES to be in motion and if he could, he would ride ALL DAY long!! As soon as get got out of the car, he grabbed grandma’s hand and pulled her to the barn where the tractor is stored for a ride! Ha, he knows what he wants and he defintely didn’t forget all of the fun toys and where they are stored!

Through the Spring and early Summer, I had to learn to be a teacher and a therapist on top of being mom. I know there are so many people that are my shoes as well, but the therapist part really made things more challenging. The therapists from school would email me activities to do, but I’m not expert; how did I know if I was doing things correctly? This is all on top of having a full time job. I know how overwhelmed I felt, but I can’t even begin to imagine how Luca felt. To have everything so suddenly taken away and to be essentially a prisoner at home without any understanding of why. My poor boy was so frustrated and rightfully so.

Luca’s skill level declined a bit and I think the lack of mental stimulation took it’s toll. His teachers and therapists are able to pull so much more out of him that I can ever can. I’m sure he missed seeing his peers, getting out of the house and most of all – his routine. The boy THRIVES on routine and he doesn’t take it so well when things don’t go as he expects them to.

The lockdown was long, the days were slow and it felt like no end was in sight. However, here we are at the end of August and the new normal is a little easier to handle! ABA therapy resumed in June and in-person PT resumed in early August. We also now have permission to do in-clinic ABA therapy, so Luca is finally getting his chance to get out of the house and to get back to a little of his old routine. He’s also getting over 20 hours of therapy a week and it’s make a huge difference. Luca is finally starting to bounce back!

While he LOVES leaving the house to go to therapy, he is really struggling with going anywhere else in public. He struggled prior to COVID-19, but the quarantine period and social distancing guidelines really changed things for the worst. He’s not used to being in public and we are slow re-introducing dining out at restaurants. Since he cannot wear a mask, we are confined to our table (no wandering for Luca!!). It hasn’t been very fun, but we’re working on it and hopefully Luca will be able to get used to it again. For now, we just need way to focus on getting him to zone into his iPad and to block out his surroundings when we are out. What did people do prior to iPads and tablets? I can’t even imagine – they are lifesaver for us!!!

As for the school year that’s around the corner….well, that’s a whole different story. That being said, how is Luca going to officially be a FIRST GRADER in a couple weeks?! I’m totally mind blown!!!

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