Saturday, December 3, 2011

Beaten Like a Rented Mule

Sorry about not blogging but I have been exhausted.  Completely rung out.  Beaten Like a Rented Mule.

I have been doing Cellfield therapy all week and it has been kicking my sorry tail.  It has a been very sorry tail all week.  It is a 100 mile round trip from my home to Glen Mills where I do my Cellfield therapy.  On Thursday, when I do vision therapy, it is 45 miles from Glen Mills to Leola, PA and then 89 miles from Leola to home.   I almost thought about getting a hotel room on Thursday but I managed to haul myself home.  Oh yeah, I also went to another appointment with a new occupational therapist but that was on the day that we were getting a new TV delivered so I had to run home from Glen Mills and then run back to Plymouth Meeting, a mere 29 miles from home.  I did take one day off but I went down to Philadelphia by train to feed the homeless and then walked to the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts to visit the exhibit there and then went to an alumni meeting that night.

Friday afternoon and much of Saturday were spent in bed.

Cellfield therapy has been helping me out.   I am making some progress in vision.  Vision therapy by itself seems to have stalled out a bit for me.  I am continuing it but I think I need a boost somewhere.  Cellfield therapy starts with occlusion, that is, obscuring vision in one eye with special lenses  for one hour per day for the first four days.  On Monday, I will go back to using both eyes for the lessons.  Well, occlusion has been an eye-opener!  I can read things on the screen just fine with my right eye.  But, I have severe problems with my left eye.  At times, I literally, just can't see the words on the screen or have to work extremely hard to see them.  No wonder I am suppressing my left eye.

Cellfield is broken into 3 different sections: Mosiaics, Sound/ Symbol Correspondence, and 4 Language Components:

  • Mosaics (10%) are so called because they look like black tiles arranged irregularly on a blank checker board.  The task requires reconstructing a given Mosaic onto its blank checkerboard neighbour. The Mosaics progress in 4 x 4, 6x6, 8x8 and 10x10 configurations. This task provides regular break during sessions to keep children engaged and their executive function in ‘novelty’ mode. It is intended to enhance spatial skills, pattern recognition, sequencing, visual retention, rapid scanning, and eye/hand motor control.   
  •  Symbol/sound correspondence task.   Five single vowels are presented aurally and visually, with an example word for each. The child is required to repeat each vowel. After all the vowels have been so presented, they are presented again aurally and visually in a different whole word.  Each vowel in its corresponding word disappears leaving the rest of the word which stays on screen.  The child is required to find the missing vowel from two lines of vowels moving opposite to each other on screen, then put it back into the gap in the word.  This is repeated for nine vowel combinations and twenty single consonants. This symbol/sound correspondence revision exercises takes about 20% of Session 1 and Session 2 in treatments A- and A. 
  • The four language components are Rhymes, Homophones, Embedded Text & Pidjin 

    • Rhymes (30%) involve choosing the correct word out of four phonetically similar choices, with acoustically modified target words. The intention is to enhance phonological awareness and enhance auditory perception through acoustically modified target words. The task involves a strong orthographic to phonological emphasis and decoding of whole words. 
    • Homophones (20%) involve choosing the correct printed word out of a choice of two, given an aurally presented sentence using the correct word.  
    • Embedded text (15%) involves reconstructing and remembering phrases and sentences from a string of words and nonwords which have no spaces between them and are moving slowly in opposite directions. This task is intended to exercise phonological processing, attention control, ocular scanning and working memory. 
    • Pidjin English (25%) involves the reconstruction of words, phrases and sentences, which have had their orthographic representations altered in a consistent way, finding the original words within moving strings of words. This is considered to be Cellfield’s most powerful inductive learning exercise. It involves high demands on phonological processing, working memory, visual closure, visual retention, ocular motor control and eye/hand coordination.  From 
I am not dyslexic but the program helps with ocular control problems that I do have.  Boy, am I really aware of suppression and will attack my vision therapy exercises that deal with suppression with renewed vigor!  It is also supposed to help with divergence.  Already, I can see that I am using my eyes better.  I have better vision and can see a lot more details in things around me.  Also, I am starting to improve my binocularity in that I can see space much better.  Haven't really achieved float.  But I am getting a spatial sense between objects.  Like space between objects on my dresser and the mirror or wall behind them.

But, I am too exhausted to do much use of these new powers and am spending my time in bed with my eyes shut.

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