S has been asking me a question this week. I need some help answering it.
The question is this:
‘How do you close your eyes?’.
I realised a few years ago that S couldn’t voluntarily close his eyes – not to blink, wink, or close them – like for when we are playing hide and seek etc. He can close them for sleep, he can blink normally. It’s just the voluntary closing he can’t do. It just seems to be a quirky little aspect of his injured brain. A missing connection…
It hasn’t really been an issue. After all, he can close his eyes when he goes to sleep and blink regularly. His eyes aren’t sore and he can see just fine. If he wants to close his eyes to play a game, he just uses his hand to cover them.
But I think an activity at school early in the week where the children were blinking and winking has got him thinking. Hence, he’s raised the question for the first time.
He told me he had thought that maybe if he closed his mouth, then his eyes would close, but it wasn’t working. And he’s asked me several times now how he could close his eyes.
So how do I answer a question like that?
My answer has been that he’s just got to practice. Not particularly helpful, I know. But it’s the best I can come up with so far.
A while back a behavioural optometrist came to S’s kinder to check all the kids and declared that S would benefit from some sessions with her. We didn’t take her up, mostly because we had too much on. But I’ve been thinking it could be worth a visit to help him with his eye tracking and concentration. Wondering now if she might also have some advice about this tricky issue.
Has anyone been to see a behavioural optometrist? Does anyone or their child have this issue? Any ideas about how I can help my son learn to close his eyes would be most appreciated. Thanks .