Jamie had his latest orthoptist appointment last Wednesday. I must confess here that I'm actually an appointment behind, since he had one in, oh, probably about last March that I never got round to recording here. Not that there was much to say about that one, but it was the next one after the September appointment in which we had been advised we could try stopping the patching again, and the appointments after no-patch periods are inevitably tense moments as we wait to see whether we can continue with the non-patching or whether it will have led to Jamie's weaker eye deteriorating and whether we'll have to start up again. Fortunately, at the March appointment, the former was the case – the orthoptist (a different one from usual) declared Jamie's eyes in good enough condition to remain a patch-free zone, and I got to breathe easy again.
Having done my tenterhook-hanging on that occasion, I didn't worry about this one at all, having rather foolishly assumed it would be a mere formality; I was therefore a touch blindsided (if you'll pardon the unintentional pun) when Barry reported back to me that we're now back on the patching regime again. For two hours a day. Oh, well – it's going fairly well for the time being. Jamie does still pull glasses and patch off pretty frequently but submits to having it put back on again, so we seem to be OK as long as we keep a close watch on him. With a bit of luck we should get it down to an hour a day by his appointment next September, which would be good considering he'll have started school by then and we'll have that much less time each weekday available for patching.
Speaking of appointments I didn't blog about, there was also his last appointment with Dr M., which in fact wasn't with Dr M. when it came to the point – that one was Friday 6th February, which turned out to be the end of a week of country-paralysingly heavy snow, and Dr M. ended up getting stuck in the nearby city with all the clinic notes. His clinic was thus taken that day by Dr H., a colleague of his armed with only the brief summaries on each patient that Dr M. had managed to pass on to her in a hasty phone call. In Jamie's case, the brief summary was apparently that his ASD had been diagnosed last August and that I was a GP. Dr H. was a cheerfully breezy woman who was quite a contrast to Dr M. in personality – she reminded me of an enthusiastic and good-natured headmistress – but she was just as pleasant as him, and took Jamie's climbs all over the consulting room (not the formalin-smelling one on this occasion, at least) in good part. She asked us about his sleep and eating and the progression of his toilet training and various other things which I forget, talked about getting him statemented for school, and recommended some parent training days on autism which neither of us have actually got round to getting to at any point. That was about it. We now have a slew of school-related stuff coming up this Thursday, so at least I'm briefly up to date on my reporting of appointments before falling behind again.
And now, dear readers, I seek your input. I always meant to set up a specific category for autism-related blog posts as soon as Jamie's diagnosis was formalised, but never actually got round to it until, well, now. So, given my penchant for obscure and quirky category names… what should I call this one? I'd like to go for 'Spectral' (as in autistic spectrum disorder – geddit?), but that might be too obscure for people visiting the blog. 'Adventures in Autism' might be good if I hadn't already gone with that theme for the category of squint-related posts, but, given that I already do have a similarly-named category, I fear it would look repetitive. Should I go with 'Spectral'? Or does anyone have any other ideas? And, while we're on the topic, do my current categories make any sort of sense to anyone apart from me, if the answer to that one is 'No' then is anyone troubled by that, and would anyone like a 'Guide to Sarah's Bloggy Categories' post at any point?