Saturday, May 10, 2008

I’ve been feeling a bit like a cartoon character lately. You know, one of those wacky ones who can’t seem to stop moving. I can’t even put my finger on what is making me so busy. I always have a list of things I want to accomplish and I can never get everything checked off the list. Not to mention the housework that is piling up...literally. As I write this, there are three, possibly four loads of unfolded laundry lying on my couch. Yipes!

So what’s been going on in our lives? Here are some snippets from our life lately...

I can only get Elijah to take a good long nap if he’s laying on me (or anyone for that matter). Otherwise, his naps typically only last a half hour. Hmm, this might be why I can never seem to complete my “To do” list.

Infant Class
We had our last infant class this past Tuesday. I’m actually kind of bummed that it’s over. Yes, it was stressful at times and honestly, a bit difficult to see what other babies are doing...and what therefore Elijah is not. But, overall, we both really enjoyed it. I learned some new songs and met some really great moms.

Nine Month Check-up
I don’t have much to add about Elijah’s (pre) nine month check-up, but I wanted to share something the doc said that really scared us. We were talking about feeding Elijah and our doc was encouraging us to take things slow with the solids. He warned us that sometimes a child’s tone can increase so much that it affects the muscles in the esophagus and that can affect a child’s ability to eat. He was just warning us to be careful. We thought we were out of the woods in the eating department, so it was hard to hear. I mentioned what the doc said to our OT and while she can’t say for certain, she really didn’t seem to think that Elijah was going to have tone so tight that he wouldn’t be able to eat. That was good enough for me and we’ve filed it away in “Another Thing to Worry About” file and have mostly forgotten about it.

Elijah’s sitting continues to improve. Andy and I have actually taken Elijah shopping and were able to sit him in the shopping cart! I had received a shopping cart cover as a gift awhile back and it has become invaluable. The cover slips over the bucket part of the cart and the idea is that it keeps your child away from the germs on the cart. The great thing for Elijah is that it has shoulder straps and so it gives him a little more stability than a seat belt across the waist. He loves being in the cart this way. He can kick his legs freely and can see more of what is going on. He looks like such a big boy in the cart that it makes my heart swell with pride. He does get tired easily and starts to lean to a side (sitting is a lot of work!) and so I’ve found putting blankets to his sides helps keep him upright. I figure the more we do this, the stronger he will be. If you can’t tell, I’m incredibly proud of the little guy. He continues to amaze me on a daily basis and the fact that he is sitting unassisted at this age (with everything he’s been through) is nothing short of a miracle.

Elijah’s sight is also improving and all of the developmental progress he is making seems to go hand in hand with his vision. He is so much more engaging than he used to be. He looks at people when they enter the room (not always), reacts to things, turns to look at the person holding him, and overall seems to be enjoying his life more. Speaking of sitting in the shopping cart, Elijah has actually turned backwards to look at us while sitting in the cart. This was huge to us, because it takes a lot more coordination to do this.

Follow Along Program
The Follow Along Program is something that helps track a child’s development by sending out questionnaires to parents at certain developmental stages. The program is supposed to help identify developmental lags when they occur. We’ve participated in this program with Elijah and have filled out two questionnaires. The first was when Elijah was four months old and his scores were all within the “normal” range. I had hoped that this would continue, but between four months and eight months Elijah has fallen behind. We filled out the eight month questionnaire and I had to check a lot of “not yet” boxes. That was hard to do. The one area of development he scored in the “normal” range was gross motor (although probably at the back end of the “normal” range). Everything else he is lagging behind his peers. We’re no longer going to be filling out these questionnaires, because the whole point is to identify problems and we already know they exist.

I share this because while he is doing exceptionally well, we can’t deny anymore that he has developmental delays. (I’ve tried to deny it as much as I could!) It’s not easy for me to say that, but it’s simply the truth. Thankfully, Elijah is doing well and is making steady progress. We’ve become pretty good at focusing on those little (big!) things. He is an amazing guy and he can still use prayers for healing and growth. Thanks for reading. :)


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