TherHappy Kid August Makes His Mark
Six-year-old August and his family cherish quality time through shared creativity. Each family member has their own spot at the dining room table to create works of art, and August’s father – an artist himself – encourages coloring outside of the lines. Now covered in clay, watercolor, and permanent marker, the previously immaculate table serves as the family ‘art studio’ on a daily basis.
In this household, activities aim to promote individuality and family bonding, but unlike his older sisters, August found himself resistant and uninterested in drawing and writing. Art was a frustrating task rather than an activity of self-expression and fun. August’s parents became concerned with his fine motor skills when he was in preschool.
“He was getting really frustrated, even with the little writing they do in preschool,” shares August’s mom, Brenna.
August struggles with migraines and hypotonia which affect his muscle tone, strength, stamina, and fine motor skills. To address August’s challenges, his pediatrician recommended both occupational and physical therapy.
Occupational therapy (OT) would address August’s frustration and difficulty with handwriting, while physical therapy (PT) would boost his stamina and strength, preventing migraine triggers by minimizing exhaustion.
Although August’s family knew what resources he needed to succeed, insurance would not cover the cost of both therapies. When Variety came into the picture, everything fell into place.
“He really needed both therapies, and Variety was able to get us both at the same time. Without Variety, we would have to pick one therapy over the other when they really play into each other,” explains Brenna.
Therapy began helping August strengthen his muscles, empowering him to scale larger, busier playgrounds during recess. With increased stamina, August could keep up with his classmates without fatiguing and triggering migraines, easing Joshua and Brenna’s concerns about his safety.
“August gets vertigo when walking downstairs, and that’s always been scary for us. Physical therapy has not only provided him with tips, tricks, and tools to navigate safely, but also made us feel more confident knowing he is safe,” notes August’s parents.
After a full year of both physical and occupational therapy, August’s skills, confidence, and independence have skyrocketed! His creativity is in full bloom, and his parents feel great relief knowing he has the tools he needs to continue flourishing.
In the past, August would ask his mom to write captions or draw pictures for him, but now he eagerly creates his own illustrations and writes his own stories. He has quickly built himself a library full of original books featuring his favorite types of character: monsters!
By providing consistent access to both types of therapy, Variety has allowed August to develop the skills to truly express himself.
“That was the biggest impact for us – we didn’t have to pick one, we could do both. If we hadn’t done it this way, he wouldn’t have made the progress he has,” Brenna explains.
“He is now literally writing and spelling words completely on his own, and he can do homework independently!”
No longer exhausted or frustrated from the school day, August proudly takes his seat alongside his family, making his own mark on the dining room table.
As August’s mom shares, “It’s really important to us as a family that he joins us.”
Variety’s waitlist for therapy continues to grow, leaving more local children without access to the vital therapy they need to thrive. Your support today can provide essential services to unlock the potential for Variety Kids like August!