This past weekend we drove Lauren down to Kentucky to be evaluated by Dr. Carolyn Mervis at the University of Louisville. She is considered to be one of the leading cognitive experts on Williams Syndrome. I was nervous about what the evaluation would show, but I was very relieved at her findings. Of course Lauren is so young, it is hard to know anything for sure, but the doctor was very impressed with Lauren's gross motor/physical skills. She absolutely could not believe how close she is to crawling. She said she will still probably be delayed in walking, but she will probably walk much sooner than is typical for WS. She also said her non-verbal reasoning ability seems very good. Also the fact that she doesn't have any feeding problems is very rare (and that makes things so much easier for me-one major issue I don't have to worry about). We do need to work on speech, because as well as she does in the other areas, she should be babbling now and she hardly makes any consonant sounds. Of course she will still have the common problems for WS-I expect she will have delays and difficulties learning, maybe behavioral problems, and certainly medical issues. But she is really doing great at this point. It was also such a relief to have her seen by someone who really knows about the syndrome.
I did have a bit of a reality check in talking with Dr. Mervis. She said there are some WS individuals of "average" intelligence, but even those are low average-I was hoping Lauren would be one of the rare lucky ones who are considered average. But, we will continue to hope for the best, but also be realisitic that she will not be like a typical person cognitively. I have read there are some individuals with WS that do marry, have jobs, etc. But, as negative as it sounds, many say "don't get your hopes up." Well, it's hard not to! We will just keep working at helping Lauren reach every potential that we can. We will also continue to have Lauren evaluated at the University, probably once a year. They are so great there!
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