Ive been at a loss at what to post in 31 for 21 this year.
I thought it would be easier actually having a child with Down Syndrome.
Last year my head was still spinning -
we had only been home Since the first of August,
I was still the "new parent". Napping when little G napped,
trying to find my cooking Mojo.
Playing in her room with her, watching "signing time" videos.
Just trying to get my head above water.
(See her on the couch with L and J! 2 years old)
( ADORABLE!!! with J and L )
I dont know much about her first 4.5 years.
I am hoping that when her baby book is ready
it will shed some light on things we missed.
Due to the language barrier we came home
with many unanswered questions.
I know that she was born with congenital cataracts,
she had surgery and they tried using contacts to correct her vision.
She had problems with eye infections and was fitted with glasses.
pictures of her learning to walk the Fall she turned 3.
I know that she was ready to potty train when they tried it the Fall she turned 4.
They thought it would be a difficult process- took less than two months.
It surprised me hearing this story - I would have started trying earlier
which might have led to more frustrations.
She wasnt speaking last year
we took the first three "signing time videos" to Ecuador with us
and played them in Spanish mode. That was a God send.
We sent those to Ecuador for the children wth special needs that we had to leave behind.(they were amazed at the progress she had made those 8 weeks.) She has over 350 signs now,
we are always talking, never signing instead of speaking. Signing together with speaking.
I am shocked almost daily at a new sign or word spoken,
yesterday she said and signed "baby goll" as she held her baby doll in her arms. (signing one handed!)
We like to color at her easel, it keeps the paper at eye level so help her see it better.
She tears paper and plays with clothespins to develop her finger muscles.
We play with shape sorters, she started with one with only 5 shapes and now works with 12. (I separate the shapes into piles for each side. Eventually I will add to the pile until all of the shapes are together to choose from.
We listen to music, her sign language videos came with CDS with the songs on them, classical music, and an old Wee sing CD. She loves 80s music and the contemporary Christian music we listen to. She enjoys chunky puzzles and books. I keep a basket of board books at her level so she can pull them out and put them away whenever she desires. I believe its building a foundation for future love of learning/reading. She has a small tricycle and wants to be succesful.
She had a hard time walking well when we first met her.
This was due to her not wearing her glasses as she should.
We dont know what happened- she has no lens so is legally blind without glasses/contacts.
I dont know if the caregivers didnt understand this
or if it was just too hard to keep the glasses on her.
(She is adamant about what she does and does not want!)
She has worn contacts since last fall and it gives her a better range of vision.
She does well with them, its dependant on if her allergies are bothering her and what we are doing that day. (going to the pool etc.)
I dont want to have my fingers in her eyes several times a day
so some days we just put the glasses on.
The contacts are very expensive and the last thing I want is to be hunting a contact-
weve learned to put her in sunglasses in the car to keep her from rubbing her eyes when we arent watching
and I keep her hair pulled severely from her face
to keep the little hairs from tickling her.
She loves Sesame Street- watches two each morning , we skip Abbys flying fairy school.
For some reason she doesnt like that part.(3ish in Ecuador)
She loved Barney in Ecuador - I occasionally let her watch it but like to limit the time we are watching TV and feel like she will learn more with Sesame Street.
in case you want to really shed a tear or two.......
What it means to be loved
For five months and eight days my wife and I had waitedGettin' ready for our baby girlBut when he called the doctor said I need to see youand could you come in soonthen something died inside of me to sit with him and hearthe tests that said our baby may not live to be a yearthen turnin' to my wife and he said "whata you wanna do?"and she said...
I wanna give her the worldI wanna hold her handI wanna be her mom for as long as I canand I wanna live every moment until that day comesI wanna show her what it means to be loved
so we spent each day, watchin' every minuteand prayin' for our baby girland I will not forget the way I felt that momentwhen she came into this worldbut they took her from the room just as soon as she was born
and watchin' through a window I could see her holdin' on
when a voice inside me said...
I wanna give her the world
I wanna be her dadI wanna hold her close for as long as I canand I wanna live every moment until that day comesI wanna show her what it means to be loved
I said everydaywe've got to bring her homeshe's been out to prove the doctors wrongoh and you should see her nowshe's as pretty as her momand theres a boy at the front door waiting just to take her to her high school prom...
and he wants to give her the worldwants to hold her handand she may get a wedding bandbut shes gonna live every moment until that day comeand were gonna show her what it means to be lovedoh yeah (what it means to be loved)