On very nice days I like to go out to our garden to enjoy the flowers, grab a snack, or to think about new treatment plans. Other times after a session, I will take one of my patients and let them enjoy the yard. Many of the parents like to spend time on the deck while waiting for their children to finish their session. I try my best to create an atmosphere of comfort for everyone.
By the time a parent "rounds up" the kids and travels to my office, as a mother, I know it can take it out of you. My son is in college, now. I can remember endless hours taking him to practices, sport camps, educational seminars, etc. so I have a great deal of empathy for parents. This is one of the reasons, when my schedule permits, I am willing to do in-home sessions.
When parents initially meet me I am often asked what is my therapeutic philosophy when it comes to children. Is there a certain protocol that I follow? My husband once joked that I am a "therapeutic pragmatist". He explained that whatever technique, protocol, or therapy I could use to make the child better is all that matters. He was right about me always trying to shape the therapy to the child, not the reverse. I have always believed that when a child is done with therapy that he/she will need the capacity to face the world awaiting them. It is my job - my passion - to make sure any child, I've treated, is ready for the exciting experience that is the world.
I endeavor to make therapy sessions a warm, comforting, and fun experience. I reward the children with small gifts earned by good effort. Children, just like their parents, expect something for hard work. Parents are rewarded with homework for the kids. Practice makes perfect. Parents who make the effort are rewarded with overall shorter therapy time.
So, if you would like to join me in the garden to discuss your little boy or girl, please, feel free to contact me and we'll arrange a time to meet.
Thank you for visiting my garden,
Joan A. Eckert
P.S. There is a calendar on the last page, if you need it.