Friday, July 30, 2010

Messes and successes

I am a huge Rachael Ray fan. In her magazine she has a column entitled "Messes and successes" in which readers write in telling of cooking experiences gone awry. Even the successes involve mistakes that just happened to turn out well. Well sewing Jasz' pants was a messes and successes moment for me.

It took me a day to accept that this was something I needed to do. So I pulled out my needle and thread. I thought I was being smart and turned his pants inside out so I could sew the seams together . What seemed like a great idea at the time created a mess when I tried to put the pants back right side out. It became obvious that poor Jasz would be wearing his jammie pants inside out...well there are certainly worse things in life. So last night was the first time I put them on him. Another what I thought was a mess. I didn't sew them down far enough. So, he could still frog leg his legs slightly. It ended up being a success though. When Trina came today and I told her about it, her face brightened. She says, "that actually may have been the smartest idea yet. You know we were worried about him getting too uncomfortable. what a great way to get around that, by easing him into it." She went on saying, "If I were you I would just stitch a little further each day until he's used to it." See what a smart mom I am?

We had more success this week than mess all in all. Yesterday Jasz brought me Alina's shoe and stuck his foot up as though saying, "Ok mom put it on." So I went to his room and pulled out a slightly too big pair of sandals. They fit him perfectly width wise but are too long. I put one on and then he stuck his other foot up saying "shoe". So I put the other one on. He grinned big and then proceeded to open the screen door and scoot out. So, he knows the rules, you need to have shoes on to go outside. He's forgetting my second rule however, you need to be on your feet not on your rump.

This morning I said, "Ok guys it's time for swim go put your shoes on." Jasz scooted over to the shoe box pulled out his sandals and brought them to me. So I put them on. He happily scooted to the door. Something I did notice, which I asked Trina about is while in the stroller with the shoes on he kept his legs straight. Almost as though the weight of them held his legs straight. He decided to show Trina his shoes while she was here and she said she did see what I was talking about and recommended I ask Sherri about it on Tuesday.

I have worked with Jasz this week on a knee stance with straight legs. Today that work paid off. Trina noticed that he was WAY more content in that position today than earlier in the week. Plus, he on his own crawled small amounts several times while she was here. He actually chose it over scooting. Now he can't do it for very long as his arms get tired, but what a great way to build those arms...YEAH JASZ!!!!

The girls got involved in his pt today too. They took the place of a ball which I need to go out and buy him. He loved using them as a tool and they loved being a part of it. I think the more everyone can be involved the better. I do not want the girls resenting Jasz for all the attention he gets. They know it's to help him, but they don't quite understand why he needs all this help. It's really clear with poor Alina. Whenever Trina or Sherri comes she tries to get right in their face like "I'm cute too, pay attention to me too." Any ideas on mediating that without her feeling rejected would be awesome.

Anyways all in all this has been one giant success for our family this week. We are off to the lake for a day tomorrow, and Monday it's back to busy schedule.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Our new Journey Called Life: Learning moments not just for kids

Our new Journey Called Life: Learning moments not just for kids: "Today I learned from my daughter Alina. I learned patience and understanding can change everything. We had a busy morning going to swim cl..."

Learning moments not just for kids

Today I learned from my daughter Alina. I learned patience and understanding can change everything. We had a busy morning going to swim classes. Afterward's we had a picnic lunch. We than ventured over to the library to check in for the summer reading program.

Jasz loves the library as the children's area has a lot of short tables that he can easily stand up on as well as puzzles all the kids enjoy playing with. There is a puppet show area with lots of puppets and a "stage" as well.

When we walked in today there was this boy named Joshua. I know his name is Joshua because his mom called his name quite often while I was there. He had lined up all the puppets except for the very large anteater. He then began hucking the anteater across the room at the poor smaller puppets. He couldn't quite throw it that far so he began swinging this puppet about wildly. Sometimes knocking a puppet down sometimes barely missing one of my children's faces. One of the librarians whispers, "Oh I don't think you should be waving that around you might hit someone." At which point a disembodied voice shouts ,"Joshua!!"

Next Joshua starts climbing the puppet stage and again the librarian says "Oh I don't think that's a good idea." Again the disembodied "Joshua". Meanwhile my kids had avoided the puppet area for fear of getting hit. So they had each picked a puzzle to play with. Once deterred from climbing the furniture, Joshua tries to take the puzzle from Jasz. I was there however, so I said "No thank-you he has that one." Again the disembodied voice.

So, he moves on to the puzzle that Alina is using and he says, "I was gonna play with that one." I waited for the reaction because Alina can be one who gets VERY upset at things like that. She however looks at him and very calmly says, "Well, you can't right now because I am using it. But you can help me if you want." At this point Joshua finally calms down as though he had just been waiting for someone to want to spend time with him. He sat down and started putting that puzzle together WITH Alina. And they were very sweet together. It was funny because I was at my boiling point and she just completely diffused the situation. It wasn't all Joshua's fault because there was another family of little one's whose mom had simply brought them into the children's area and left to go find a book. The littlest one wanted whatever puzzle Jasz was playing with. I was trying to be nice but there was a protective side to me that just doesn't want my child hurt.

But my daughter taught me a lesson today. A little calm and understanding of what is really is going on can completely change someone's attitude. Little Joshua's mother never actually came over, never paid attention to him. But Alina did and his whole demeanor changed. He just needed a friend.

Thanks for the lesson Alina.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Is this how life is now?

Well today was quite hectic for me. We started the day with swim class. You know I actually thought a 10am swim would be warm enough after all it is the END of July. But it isn't even starting to warm by the end of Bella's class which get's out at 11am. Thankfully Janine helped me out today and brought Bella home from swim as Jasz had his first Occupational Therapy appointment today. The therapists name is Sherri
I'm not exactly sure what I expected the appointment to be like but I am sure it wasn't what I thought it would be. I expected her to do stretches and exercises with him, but she didn't at least not today. She asked a ton of questions about my concerns, and watched the way Jasz moves. She was also heavily focused on his skin. She seems to firmly believe his rough itchy skin which he has had since birth is a food or environmental allergy. She wants me to do a wheat elimination diet, but then backed off once Sherri realized that I would have to be on the same diet, as he is still nursing. So, she suggested I have a Dr. order a Celiac disease panel. She also suggested he be seen by a Pediatric Orthopedist. She noticed as did others working with him that he splays his joints. Sherri really wants his hips and legs X-rayed to get a better idea of what is going on in there.
I had mentioned he seems to be stronger on his left side than his right and she said that she didn't see it in what she saw him do. But he didn't do what I was talking about while Sherri was here. Sherri said that if it is the case he may have cerebral palsy. So I should mention it to Dr. carter.
Because of Jasz' incorrectly standing and incorrect position while crawling we now have to backtrack. We have to constantly position his legs while he is standing and we have to get him to be up on his knees and position him so his hips aren't splayed out and he is strengthening the correct muscles.
I mentioned my wanting him to have stronger jaw muscles so he is not so limited on what he will eat and the cups he can use. So she gave me some interesting ideas. One is to tap the muscles around his mouth right before he eats. She suggested making it a game and involving the girls. Another is to go by a vibrating toothbrush for him. She thinks we should start by using it on the outside of his mouth and eventually trying to use it on the inside. I guess the vibrations should help build those muscles. she also wants the girls to play a tongue sticking out game with him. It won't be hard for them!!
She talked about how loose his joints are a lot and suggested that we sew his pj pants together to the know wo he can't splay his hips while sleeping. I think we'll try it though I am skeptical as he won't be comfortable and may not sleep well and then I won't either. But I guess I know my project tonight.
She kept going back to allergies and his skin. Sherri told me the reason she really wants this investigated is that many food allergies are overlooked and repeated exposure to an allergen can cause organ damage over time.
So my home work from Sherri: Ask Dr. Carter a list of questions, sew Pj pants, buy a vibrating toothbrush and buy a playground sized ball for his therapy. She ended up staying an hour and a half. But, she clearly wants to help him in all areas of his life.
I left the kids with Janine again and took Jade to play with a puppy. I will talk more about that in another post. Just know Jade plays nicely with others and expect an announcement soon. I rushed home and got dinner in the oven and finished just in time for Trina to come over. Trina is his child Development specialist. I guess Sherri had filled her in on that appointment.
So we have a new focus. The focus is now is not so much in getting him moving. It's baby steps, we have to build those muscles correctly. Trina and I spent a long time working with his stand. His natural stand is hips splayed, feet in plie position. So she had to reposition his legs to have knees and feet pointing forward. something we noticed in doing that is even when you get his legs in the correct position there is an odd bend in the ankle. Like it curves the wrong way. Again we don't know what it's about but it is worth looking into. It's hard to balance as we want him to crawl because having to use his arms will strengthen them, but we can't let him crawl in an incorrect position. He also gets tired real fast so it will take time.
Now this mommy is tired and a little overwhelmed at how large this task before me seems. I must remind myself that the small accomplishments are even more important than the big one's as they lay the foundation. I also have been told numerous times by Trina that she has never before seen a 17 month old with such great imagination play. She said today that maybe by themselves but not with others. It is very unusual for a child his age to involve others in his play and he really wants others to be involved. he skipped right over the parallel play step. So his intellect, charm and ingenuity will get him far in this process and has already made it easier for Trina. I alsomust remember that I have a support network and when I am feeling overwhelmed they may be called upon.
I think that's all for now, but I will try to write often!!