Children are not their diagnoses.
Developmentally, every child is exactly where they are supposed to be in any given moment in time. Sound radical? It is. This idea of radical acceptance is when we stop fighting reality—and we let the magic happen. It means not letting a diagnosis determine how we approach each child and their future outcome. Radical acceptance isn’t embracing a give-up attitude. Rather, it gives hope because we’re not in a constant state of judging or fighting the situation.
Why trust me with your child?
As a mom, I know that every child is completely unique—and we all want our children to achieve their individual potential. So, when I initially assess a patient, I’m learning that child’s personality, comfort level, preferences, and motivations. From that foundation, I determine the why behind the problem (sensory component, trunk restrictions, tone abnormalities, muscle weakness, etc.). Next, the parents and I make a plan of action. We’ll collaborate to set expectations and determine goals for the child, and then start the interventions to reach these milestones.
Along with radical acceptance, it takes radical courage to push beyond self-limiting boundaries (a child’s and our own) and work outside the comfort zone. But this is where goals are achieved. After 22 years in the field of pediatric physical therapy, my threefold purpose is simple: treat the individual child, educate and empower the parents, and reach outcomes that are important to the family unit…and do it all with empathy and compassion.