Thursday, October 22, 2015

A Time For Change

I have always been one of those people who avoids conflict and confrontation like the plague. I grew up in a house where I was the least skilled at arguing and debating, so I didn't bother advocating for myself very much. Instead, I spent my time trying to keep the peace between family members. Later in life, this translated into not arguing with friends and co-workers, not sending food back at restaurants even if it was frozen, and waiting for three hours in a doctor's waiting room before inquiring about an obvious delay in care.

Then I had kids, and I discovered that motherhood REQUIRED that I advocate my kids, especially before they had developed language skills. This helped me gain confidence in voicing my opinion.

Then I learned I had the BRCA1 mutation, and I discovered that I needed to be my own best advocate - in researching the options I had for preventative care, in fighting for coverage for the prophylactic procedures I was choosing, and in finding and communicating with health care professionals. The experience gave me even confidence in speaking up for myself.

I don't like arguing for arguments' sake, but when something or someone is worth advocating for, I now feel justified in fighting a good fight.

The American Cancer Society has just recommended that "average risk" women begin having annual mammograms at the age of 45, rather than at the age of 40. They have also recommended that the annual mammograms continue only until the age of 54, at which time they would take place every two years. They have ALSO recommended against clinical breast exams for all 

These new guidelines make no sense to either my head OR my heart. My heart aches for the many "average risk" women I know who were diagnosed with breast cancer before they turned 45, whose prognosis would have been far more grim had mammograms not been available to them. My head wants to argue the facts: For the past 25 years, the rate of deaths from breast cancer has been decreasing. The largest decrease in death from breast cancer has been among women age 50 or younger. This is largely attributed to the widespread access and encouragement of early breast cancer screenings, screenings which were supported by the American Cancer Society’s prior recommendations. 

This is why I have started a petition on, opposing the American Cancer Society's new recommendations for breast cancer screenings. It is a fight that my heart and mind believe is more than worth fighting. I hope that others will bring their voices, their emotions, and their experiences to this petition, and that a collective voice of opposition to these recommendations will strengthen and grow.

If you are a cancer survivor, if you are a previvor, if you have a relative or friend who has battled cancer, if you are a citizen who is concerned with the influence these recommendations may have on future insurance policies and women's health, please consider signing this petition. 

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

The Very New Year

It happens quite often. My birthday coincides with one of the major Jewish holidays pretty much every year. This year, my major milestone 40th birthday will be taking place on the holiday of Yom Kippur, which is seriously the most serious Jewish holiday of them all. It’s a day of fasting, repentance,  self-reflection and groveling. Sounds like a real party, right?

About eight months ago, while I was planning my major surgery, I was simultaneously fantasizing about throwing a big, blow-out birthday bash for my fortieth. I felt like I deserved it, and like I wanted to celebrate life and living via an evening of semi-debaucherous activities, which would include fancy cocktails and karaoke and dancing and cupcakes.

Well, about four months ago, when I found out I was pregnant, those plans flew out the window. And after going through the past four months of morning sickness, heartburn, weight gain, and other various bodily discomforts, I have changed my vision of how I would like to celebrate my upcoming birthday, especially realizing that my birthday falls on Yom Kippur. Instead of painting the town red, I am now picturing a quiet evening with my kids (Chris will be on-call tomorrow night, which means he is unlikely to get home before 10 pm), eating a bagel and a few celebratory carrot sticks with dip (luckily us pregnant ladies are not required to fast – I’d never make it past 10 am), and seizing the moment to really reflect on the blessings of this past year (and decade), and the hopes for the year (and decade) to come.

Because, MAN, my thirties were CRAZY. I met my husband, married my husband, gave birth to two children, held three different jobs, lost my mother, my father-in-law had a stroke, we bought and sold our first home, bought a second home, I had major cancer-preventing surgery, and got pregnant AGAIN. That’s A LOT of activity, energy, and emotion to fit into one decade.
And here I am on the cusp of my forties. And I want to take the moment to focus on all that I have going in to this new decade of life.

I have a beautiful, amazing daughter who will be turning five in a month. Ember has blossomed in countless ways over the past year.  She started kindergarten! And despite her slightly nervous, slightly fearful personality, she seems to really be enjoying it. Last summer she was scared to death of swimming; this year we could not get her out of the water even if we tried. I think she actually has become a mermaid. She still plays by herself beautifully, making up amazing storylines and truly diving deep into her pretend worlds (we are going to enroll her in Drama Kids International to see if her imagination can bloom even further). She is an emotional, sensitive, creative spirit, through and through. And she is a great older sister to Oren. Granted, some days it is easier for her to share her toys than others, but that would be true of any kid. Generally speaking, the two of them are wonderful to watch together – they share their made-up worlds, are concerned for each other’s well beings, and are truly good friends.

As for Oren himself, he is an incredible 2.5 year old boy. At school, his teacher calls him “the professor.” Truly, he astonishes with his vocabulary. And as I like to say to my friends, the only way I know Oren is asleep is that he stops asking questions. I imagine that the inside of his brain looks like a super highway, with cars moving in all sorts of directions simultaneously. But besides being a super smart kid, Oren is one of the kindest hearted children I have known (and I am not at ALL biased). I am glad to say that the hugs, cuddles, and general love that he bestowed upon me as an infant has not gone away, and in fact it may have actually grown in the past few years. Oren is totally the cheerleader of our family. On days when the rest of us are tired and dragging our feet, Oren is singing songs and excitedly cheering us on with jokes, laughter, and silly faces.

And then there is my husband. Chris is my LOVE – despite his hectic and exhausting work schedule, he has been a true partner in parenting, and our adoration and friendship only continues to grow as our family grows. Granted, I would love to spend more time with him. Last night we snuck a few minutes of pillow talk into our evening before both of us fell fast asleep, a moment I totally treasured. I know that finding moments to connect with Chris is going to only get more challenging with three kiddos in the house, but we will figure out a way to do it (calling all amazing babysitters – WE NEED YOU)! And I have some pretty solid plans for us to finally go on our honeymoon when we celebrate our 10th anniversary in 5 years... I may just start counting down the days now.

And this little being growing inside my body? What an unbelievable surprise he was, and what a beautiful 40th birthday present he will be (god willing). He will join our family in 2016 and will be another source of joy, of love, and inspiration in our home. Chris, Ember, Oren and I will all learn that our hearts are capable of so deeply loving yet another human being, another family member. As much as I complain about the not-so-fun side of being pregnant, when I feel the little pitter patter of the growing boy running around in my body, I know for certain I am incredibly blessed.

There is also my health to be thankful for. And our brilliant extended family. And our wonderful friends. And our home. And our minivan (yup, we are THAT family now). So very much to reflect on with abundant gratitude.

So while my fortieth birthday celebration might not qualify for Bravo Channel’s “My Fab 40th,” I feel no loss. I’ll take this quiet moment of celebration, reflection, and appreciation.

And who knows? Maybe I will have a raucous 41st birthday party ;).

Friday, July 17, 2015

A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to My Surgery

don’t feel like my life has ever followed a predictable script, and I see that as a positive. If I have developed any skill in life, it might be the ability to “roll with it,” no matter what curveball has been thrown my way.

Well, it seems we have been thrown another curveball.

Chris and I travelled to San Antonio in mid June for the second phase of my reconstructive surgery. The surgery was something I was looking forward to, and having been through the first phase of surgery so recently, I wasn’t really nervous about going through with it. 

A tropical storm had been hitting San Antonio the week of my surgery, so I rearranged our flight to get us in to San Antonio the afternoon prior to my scheduled operation. Chris and I arrived in Texas, ate some delicious Tex Mex food, and checked in to our hotel. We walked around the neighborhood, relaxed, and I did my scheduled pre-op prep work: showering with antibacterial soap, no eating or drinking after midnight, etc.

The morning of the surgery, we woke up early and drove to the hospital in the rainy remnants of the storm. As I was waiting to be admitted to pre-op, I met a lovely woman who was also going to be going through her second phase surgery with another surgeon from the same surgeon’s group I was using. We spoke about how wonderful our experiences have been with PRMA, and compared notes about the recuperation from the first phase of surgery. 

I was then called in to pre-op, where a friendly nurse administered my IV port, and spoke with me about my reasons for traveling all the way to Texas for surgery. Another nurse came in and got my urine sample and asked me several questions about my health history. She then left the room for a few minutes.

Another few minutes passed. And then another few. I began to worry because the clock seemed to be ticking closer to my scheduled surgery time, and I had not yet seen my surgeon.

The nurse came back in. She was holding two familiar looking objects in her hand, and had a strange look on her face.

“I did the test twice,” she told me. I then realized she was holding pregnancy tests.

My jaw dropped open. I covered my mouth and screamed. It was THE LAST THING I would have ever expected to happen.

“I think I am going to go get your husband now, so you can tell him the news” the nurse told me. I looked at her and shook my head. I still had no words.

When Chris came in the room, he took one look at my face and said “what’s going on? Is something the matter?”

And then I broke the news to him. And we both sat there, dumbfounded, joyful, confused, floored by the unexpected news of our pregnancy.


I don’t know if I believe in dreams, or signs, or if I just think sometimes the world presents very strange and uncanny coincidences.  

About three weeks prior to our trip to San Antonio, Chris came home from work a little late one night, while I was giving the kids a bath. He came into the bathroom and told me that something funny had happened at work. He said one of his co-workers, a guy he hardly works with, had come up to Chris and told him he had had a dream about me being pregnant.

I just laughed. 

Chris told me if, for any reason, I WAS to become pregnant, he wanted me to be assured that he was okay with having a third child.

I laughed some more. I told Chris there was no way I was pregnant, or would become pregnant, and that he should go tell his co-worker to not waste his dreams on me.


This crazy news comes with a whirlwind of emotions. I am thrilled to be pregnant. I totally thought I had closed the book on that chapter of my life when Oren was born. I love babies. I love my kids. I am 100% sure that I have room in my heart for another child, and I am psyched for Emmy and Oren to have another sibling. I am amazed by my own body, actually kind of PROUD of my body, and by its ability to get pregnant just three months after a really intense, invasive surgery. But I also feel guilty that it is so easy for us to get pregnant, as other friends struggle to have their first or second children. I’m also sad that I won’t be breastfeeding this baby. I am also worried about being 40 and pregnant. I am also nervous about having a third c-section.  

It’s crazy. It’s amazing. It’s silly. It’s strange. 

I guess I’m just going to do what I do best, and roll with it.


Monday, April 20, 2015

The Story of My Surgery

IIt occurred to me tonight, while looking through my past few posts, that I never actually wrote about what getting the DIEP flap surgery was like for me. It's funny because I feel like I have written about it twenty seven times, but I must have only been thinking about it in my head. I never actually put the experience down in words.

About ten weeks ago, my family and I flew out to San Antonio for my surgery. In the weeks prior to our travel, I had come down with a cold, but it wasn't a terrible cold. I wasn't hacking up a lung or anything. It was your standard, run-of-the-mill cold that generally just goes away within a week. I thought it was a nothing.

As it turns out, it was not a nothing. On the flight to San Antonio, my little cold turned into a horrible earache that made me want to tear my ears right off of my head. And then it turned into a sinus infection. And strep throat. When I went to the hospital on the day of my scheduled surgery, the nurse in admitting took my temperature and then gave me a look that said "how the heck do you think you are going to make it through surgery with a 102 degree fever?!"

My amazing, kind, lovely surgeon came and spoke with me. He told me I was fighting an infection, and I was not in good shape for such a strenuous surgery. He told me if I was HIS wife, he would not want me operated on that day. So, through tears of disappointment, we planned to reschedule the DIEP flap surgery for the next week. I was incredibly lucky that Dr. C was able to fit me into his schedule, and that rescheduling did not require me and my family to fly back and forth to San Antonio again. I was given some pretty hefty doses of antibiotics, and for the next week, my body worked on getting better.

On the day of the actual (rescheduled) surgery, one week later, I went to the hospital at 6:30 a.m. to be admitted. I remember having my temperature taken, getting my blood pressure taken, and getting an IV. I remember Dr. C coming in to talk to me and my husband about the surgery and to reassure us, as my intravenous "cocktails" started to work. I don't remember much else, honestly. I think I remember being rolled through the hallway. And I think I remember my body being lifted from one surface to another, though I don't know if that was pre or post surgery. The rest of the surgery is like an eight hour parentheses in my life.

I woke up at some point in the late afternoon that day and saw my husband by my side. I had been told by several women who had been through this kind of surgery that I would not be lucid at all until day 2 (or at the very least, until very late on the night following surgery). But I was actually quite with it upon waking. I was able to have a conversation with my husband, which really surprised him, because he also thought I would spend my first wakeful hours thinking I was the Queen of England.

I remember the next few days in the hospital as being quite challenging. Probably the hardest thing I have been through physically in my life, but not impossible. Not HORRIBLE. Just HARD. I think, in my head, I had believed the recovery would be akin to the recovery I went through with each of my c-sections: the discomfort, the stiffness, the exhaustion. It WAS like that recovery, but way more intense. Walking my first steps post surgery felt like I was totally re-learning how to walk. And I had to rely on other people sitting me up in the hospital bed because I had very limited arm function. It was weird. It was tough. But every new little thing I was able to do post surgery was a mini-milestone that was celebrated.

The hardest part of the surgery for me was the itching. Apparently, I don't do well on morphine. Or maybe morphine doesn't do well on me. It took me a while to realize it, but the morphine drip I was on for pain management gave me the craziest itchy feelings I have ever encountered. I begged Chris to scratch my entire body over and over again. When he scratched, I could feel every little sensory nerve on my skin reacting to his touch. But despit the scratching, the itching never really went away, and it made it hard for me to sleep. I asked the night nurses to put hydrocortisone all over my skin, which they did. Sometimes the nurses would just come and scratch my legs for me (which made me love them).

The drains were the other not-so-fun part. I had one drain coming out of each breast, and one drain coming out of each side of my belly. Blood and gunk drained out of my body into the bulbs that hung down from me. I felt like a really gross octopus. When I took my first shower, and saw myself undressed for the first time since surgery, I nearly fainted. It was a lot to take in: the scars, the drains, the scratch marks from all of my itching. But I also noticed my flat belly, which was flatter than it had been in four years (two c-sections) and I noticed my new "foobs," which were now so much less likely to be a harvesting station for cancer.

And as I was lying in my hospital bed, itching like nobody's business, and pretending to be a disgusting octopus,  I kept thinking "I would rather be itching than dying of cancer." Really, anytime I experienced a little pain, a little discomfort, or anything slightly "off" during the recovery process, it was very easy for me to say "this is way better than radiation. This is way better than chemotherapy," and it kept my expectations in check. Saving my own life was not a cake walk. It wasn't supposed to be easy.

I was discharged from the hospital five days after the surgery. Leaving a hospital after being tended to and cared for twenty four hours a day is a scary thing. But the more I got immersed back into real life, the less scary it became. I rested a lot. I drank a lot. And the lovely people of San Antonio fed me and my family very well. Within another week, we were ready to return home, and I was feeling remarkably healed already, just two weeks after surgery.

And now, here I am, eight weeks later, feeling almost completely back to normal. I still have my scars, but to be honest, I kind of like them. Every time I see my stomach, or look at my new "foobs," I see the story of how I made a very brave decision, went through an amazing surgery, toughed it out through a hard recovery, and saved my own life.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Portrait of the Artist as a Young Woman

Every day, when I pick Ember up from preschool, there is a pile of about 20 drawings in her cubby. I flip through the multi-colored construction paper pages and marvel over her fire-breathing dinosaurs, the decked-out princesses, and the families of penguins she has created. 

Ember has talent. She draws beautifully, filling every inch of her pages with characters and objects. If you watch her draw, you will hear her tell a story as she puts her marker to the paper. Her stories are elaborate, sometimes a little hard to follow, almost always quite emotionally charged.

It is an amazing thing to watch the artist as a young woman. To be honest, I am just a little envious of her abilities. She sits down at the kitchen table, takes a pen in her hand, and her imagination just kicks in to high gear, with visions and ideas pouring out of her fingers. It comes so easily to her.

For me, it is not as easy. I mean, I went to art school, and spent four years of my life intensely immersed in an environment that fostered my imagination. But now I am a working mommy. When I sit down at the kitchen table, I am thinking about my grocery list, and getting my kids enrolled in summer programs, and doing the laundry, and surgeries, and… the list goes on. It is so hard for my mind to put reality on pause, even for a few minutes.

But, inspired by Ember and her talents, I have ventured to take apen in hand again recently. I haven’t quite been escaping my reality, but I have been drawing my reality. And though my drawings are not quite as imaginative as Ember’s, it still feels really good to draw.

Thank you, Ember, for being so magnificent with your own imagination, and for inspiring me to give my creativity an outlet. I look forward to seeing your creativity grow and flourish, and to sharing our pens, pencils, markers and paper for many years to come.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Jolie and Me

Two years ago, when Angelina Jolie brought national attention to women who are BRCA mutation positive by writing "My Medical Choice" in the New York Times, I was just beginning to think seriously about getting my own prophylactic mastectomy and reconstruction. After reading Angelina's thoughtful and brave article, I was filled with gratitude. It felt like the world had given me a strange but very meaningful gift. A beautiful, confident celebrity the same age as me had JUST gone through the same surgery I planned to go through, and she was really PROUD of her decision.

Five weeks ago today, I went through my own nine hour prophylactic surgery, reducing my risk of getting breast cancer by around 90%. 

The morning of my surgery, I was not fearful. I had been anxious in the weeks leading up to my surgery, but as I entered the hospital, filled out the paperwork, and got my IV, I was very calm. I know it may sound strange, but I thought A LOT about Angelina Jolie that morning. In my head and heart, I felt connected to her. I felt brave, and confident, and clear in my decision. I felt PROUD of what I was doing, just as I had imagined she had felt.

In the five weeks that have passed since my surgery, I have not had a single moment of regret or doubt. Not a SINGLE moment. I am so proud of my decision, and I know I made the exact right decision for me. 

Now, having the bulk of the mastectomy, reconstruction, and recovery behind me, I have just begun seriously thinking about and planning the timeline for my oophorectomy. I know I need to get it done. My doctors have urged (almost begged) me to do it. My maternal great grandmother died of colon cancer, and four of her sisters died of gynecological cancers. My grandmother and mother both had oophorectomies, too. There is no doubt that this too will be the right decision for me, if I want to try and live and see my children grow into adults.

But it doesn't make getting the surgery done any easier. 

So when I heard, today, about Angelina Jolie's decision to get an salpingo-oophorectomies, I again felt like the world had given me a gift. I again felt indebted to this woman I have never met, but feel very connected to, by virtue of our shared genetic mutation, our shared decisions to be proactive, and our ability to be PROUD of our choices.

Angelina Jolie's article is beautiful and truthful. It is not about being self-pitying or self-aggrandizing. It is about gaining knowledge, and using that knowledge to make powerful decisions, so that you can be proud of the decisions you make.

Thank you, again, Angelina Jolie, for sharing your journey with the world, and for being PROUD of your decisions. It makes it that much easier for other women, like me, to share and be proud, too.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Micromanaging a Microsurgery

The countdown has begun. My prophylactic mastectomy and reconstructive surgery is coming up awfully soon.

My mind is going a little nuts with anticipation, anxiety, excitement… MORE anxiety.  Seriously, I have begun worrying about EVERYTHING.

What if I get sick with the flu the week before surgery? What if my daughter totally freaks out when I am not with my family for five nights? What if there is a horrible snowstorm right before my surgery date? What if my surgeon sneezes while he is operating on me and cuts me in half? What if my two year old cries for 6 straight weeks because I cannot hug him/hold him? What if a freak tornado hits at the exact moment I am having surgery done? What if my husband mixes red clothes in with the white laundry while I am out of commission? What if the surgeons discover an alien living in my body? 

See? I worry about EVERYTHING.

I also worry about dying on the operating table. 

I also worry about looking like a rag doll post-surgery.

And truthfully, I also worry that I am going to go through with this surgery, and will look like a rag doll, and then I will get breast cancer anyway. Or ovarian cancer. Or melanoma. Or tongue cancer. 

But “Que sera, sera,” right? I should give up on all this unproductive worrying because it is so… UNPRODUCTIVE! I should listen to the words of my daughter’s animated idol, Elsa of Arendale, and just “Let it go! Let it go!” 

And yet, because I have been anticipating this surgery for months now, and because the anticipation has involved all aspects of my head, my heart, my soul…  I just can’t let it go.

Generally speaking, honestly, I am totally a no-drama, easy-peasy lemon squeezy kind of gal. This kind of thing just brings out my inner Woody Allen.

So in an effort to combat all the negative thoughts that swirl around in my brain and distract me from being my normally optimistic self, I have been doing what I know works best to help me calm down and be less freaky. No, not yoga (yoga makes me antsy). No, not meditation (meditation makes me loopy). No, not self-medication (drugs make me queasy). 

My therapy of choice? The OneNote app.

Planning, and uber-planning, and micro-planning every aspect of this upcoming surgery has been my means of self-soothing over the last several weeks, and I've done it all on the cute OneNote app. In my OneNote notebook, I have created a plethora of lists related to the surgery, each filed under a different beautifully colored tab. I have created a “packing list” tab, an “important contacts” tab, a “places to go” tab which lists activities for Chris to do with the kids in my absence, a “shopping list” tab, a “sample schedule” tab (providing Chris with a basic outline of the children’s day), and a “preparing the house” tab. All of these tabs form a beautiful rainbow of preparation, and it is oh so calming for me to look at them. 

If I am feeling panicky, all I have to do is add a pastel colored new tab to my OneNote notebook with a list of books to read or movies to see while I am out on sick leave.  As I focus on compiling a list of dramas and comedies, my worries start to dissipate, and I start to see my upcoming sick leave as an opportunity to catch up on all the Oscar-nominated contenders. Voila! It’s like magic.

I know what this is about, of course. I’m no fool. I am trying to control what I CAN control, because the thought of giving up ALL control as I am laying on the operating table, getting my anesthesia cocktail administered, is totally frightening to me.

Obviously, in a short period of time, my surgery is going to be a reality, and not just tabs and checklists in a OneNote notebook.  Obviously, I have to face my fears, or “embrace the tiger” as I like to say, and just trust that everything is going to turn out okay. I have an amazing surgeon and an amazing team performing an amazing surgery. I have an amazingly supportive family, and an amazingly supportive group of friends, who are all going to be pulling for me and praying for me (and maybe preparing food for our family, which is double amazing). I have made an amazing choice, and I am following through with the choice I have made. All in all, this is an amazing opportunity, and I can see it as just that, if I simplify everything in my head and heart. Because really, deep down inside, I know I am a strong person, and I trust my strength, and I trust in God, and I trust that everything will be okay. Really. 

But for now, I also trust in the OneNote app. It will get me through the coming weeks, and will provide me with a trusty little haven of pretty colored tabs.



Friday, January 9, 2015

Standardizing Emmy

Chris and I got called in to Em’s school today to talk to her teacher and pre-school director about some recent observations they have had regarding Emmy. When I got the email, asking if we had time to come in and talk, I totally panicked. Millions of questions ran through my head: Is Em acting out? Are other kids picking on her? Is she light years behind her peers in her academic development? Has she started screaming “I hate mommy!” and running through the school halls naked? Is she starting a coup d’etat among the four year olds?
As it turns out, they told us Emmy runs funny. Em’s teacher and pre-school director informed us that the PT worker at the school had noticed Ember turns her feet inward when she moves quickly. She also seems to have some balance issues (which we have witnessed around the house, too, sometimes). She also doesn’t hold a marker or scissors the way they want her to. She also doesn't finish puzzles as quickly as other kids...?
And because she does not run perfectly, or hold her marker or scissors perfectly, or balance perfectly, they are recommending that Em be screened by our school district to see if she qualifies for physical therapy.
My first reaction to this was absolute relief. What they were telling us was NOT any of the horror stories I had conjured up in my head. And they went on to tell us that emotionally and socially, Em is well-adjusted. She is doing really well with her learning, and the teacher has seen lots of development across the board as she has transitioned from a three year old to a four year old. Awesome.
She is just a little… klutzy? Unique? Not perfect?
And now I am wondering, a few hours later - is it necessary to screen Ember, just because she runs a little funny? Isn’t it okay that she holds her marker in a creative way? Aren’t these things she might just grow out of eventually? Aren’t these the little imperfections that make her unique, and cute, and maybe a little silly as a four year old? Do they need to be trained out of her?
I’m torn. On one hand, I don’t want Em to trip over her own feet all the time, of course. I would kind of like her to hold her marker the right way, the way the other kids do. And I am so appreciative that the school teachers and staff are REALLY observing and noticing Emmy and offering us their observations.
But on the other hand, I feel like this screening is just another way that the education system is set up to “standardize” our kids, making sure they all write the same way, read the same way, think the same way, and act the same way. It makes me think of my parents’ era, when being left-handed was thought of as a bad thing, something you needed to be trained out of.  Why? Was it SO necessary that there be NO left handed people in America? And now, is it SO necessary that my daughter run exactly how the other kids run, with their toes pointed straight forward?
Do I think the screening is going to harm Emmy? Of course not. Do I think it may actually be helpful? Kind of. I am curious to know what an objective “screener” sees in our daughter that we fail to see, because of our proximity to her and our love for her. But do I think Em really needs therapy to train her out of her slightly silly run? I’m not sold on it. Yet.