I received lots of nice things under the tree this year, but the greatest gift has been... Duckie. 2011 started very rough for her. She was struggling socially at school. She had transitioned poorly from her wonderful, loving multiage program at the lower elementary school to a grade 4/5 looping classroom. The class was full of mostly strong, creative, loud and willful kids. And Duckie was lost. Her attitude was lousy, the girls in her group were obsessed with popularity and she came home miserable and crying almost every day. It was heartbreaking. husband and I strongly considered moving her to a different classroom because the strain on her was growing. She even had a massive meltdown in school (which had never happened before) where the school counsellor became involved. It changed everything. We decided it was best to keep her there so she learn early to deal with adversity. We revisited her sensory integration issues with an Occupational Therapist (OT). What had previously been relatively mild issues that generally didn't impact her functioning had become a full blown problem to be reckoned with. The stress, puberty and predilection toward sensory issues meant she was in almost continual sensory overload: she couldn't sleep, couldn't eat well, reactive to everything and was just stressed beyond belief. We were losing her. But using the Occupational Therapist (OT) therapies helped bring her back to us. She was able to start sleeping better and process things better. She could let go of some of the stress. It made a huge difference in her outlook. Things are different now. I wouldn't say she's a easy child, she'll always give us a run for our money. But... she's stronger now. More confident. She sets goals and works toward them. She worries a little less about where she fits in. Having her doing well is the best gift ever and one I hope for all our families. Merry Christmas and peace to all.