Monday, January 10, 2011

A Mid-January List of Ramblings

It's January. It's cold. It snowed. For some reason, this puts me in the mood for a random list of information in no specific order. So here we go!

1. We finally FINALLY came up on the waitlist for the pediatric occupational therapy group and had our first appointment, which was part of the long evaluation process, last Monday. We were there for hours and won't get the official results until we go back this Friday. Colin was absolutely wonderful through the whole process and was his usual sweet self. He acted very true to form and I felt like the therapist got a good representation of him from our visit. She kept saying randomly that he was "so extremely sweet" and things like "I don't think I have ever met a sweeter child", which was nice. While I don't have a lot of details, I know he qualifies for services because the therapist asked us to go ahead and make a weekly standing appointment. She also jumped right in and offered good practical tips for helping Colin with some of his sensitivities and offered insight into some of the things he does. It was a great visit and I am anxious for Friday so that we can see what a therapy visit is like, as well as find out the results from the testing. She pointed out a couple of things that I had not noticed at all, like the fact that he does not use his pincer grasp, but instead uses his thumb and middle finger to pick things up and move them. She said that part of therapy will involve strengthening the muscles needed to use his pincer grasp properly, which will help him learn to hold a writing utensil as well as silverware with more ease. He has struggled with holding forks and spoons and rarely takes more than 2 bites with them, but I had no clue that there could be a problem. So already, I am extremely thankful that we went. We also learned a very interesting tidbit of information while we were there. At one point toward the end of testing, the therapist kept giving Colin all sorts of things to pick up and put in a little container. She did it over and over again and then had him draw a picture for her twice. She then went back to the small objects and then held one of his hands down and watched him pick things up with the available hand. I had no clue what she was doing until she looked back at us and announced, "For the first time, I am truly stumped!" and went on to explain that Colin does not favor either hand over the other. It looks like he is completely ambidextrous! She said that she tried everything and could not get him to favor a side. He split everything evenly over both sides of his body and when she held down his left hand, he would use the right hand, but still cross over the left side of his body to put it in that bin. She had apparently never seen anything like it. Interesting stuff for sure! Apparently, this is very rare and ambidextrous kids have a hard time learning to write because they frequently switch back and forth, sometimes even mid-sentence. So crazy! I gave Colin mac and cheese for lunch today and asked him to practice eating with his spoon for me. He switched the spoon from hand to hand almost every other bite. I had noticed him doing that before and we could never figure out his preference. Jeremy is pretty much ambidextrous, so I don't know why I was shocked. He writes with his left hand, but throws, bats and shoots with his right. I think it must be the mark of a two brilliant boys. :-)

2. We threw away pull-ups a couple of weeks ago and haven't looked back. Colin has been FULLY trained at school since the day it started back in September. Home, however, was a different story. I have tried very hard not to push him and take it one day at a time. I also could not get him to wear underwear because he didn't like the different feel of them, which is just a typical sensory thing. I got his teachers in on things and they told him that they really wanted to see Colin in regular underwear when he came back from Christmas. So we finished the pull-ups and then he agreed to wear underwear to school, simply because he didn't want to disappoint his teachers. It worked like a charm! :-) We have not looked back since, but he does have lots of accidents at home. I have to remind him to stop what he is doing to go, which works fine, but if I forget to tell him, he forgets to go! He absolutely does not have accidents outside the house or at school, so I am hoping that he soon starts remembering on his own here. He has also not wet the bed once and wakes up completely dry every morning. So I know he is ready and the home problem is one of conditioning. Colin being Colin, whenever he has an accident, he erupts into tears and begins saying, "Mommy, are you mad or sad? Please don't be mad or sad! I am so sorry!". That breaks my heart! I have never EVER shown a bit of anger or even frustration when he has an accident, but regardless, he is still so worried about it.

3. Colin looked at me yesterday and said, "Mom, would it be cool to open a restaurant in a dog park so that if people get hungry, they can eat while their dogs play?". I told him that was actually a very good idea. This represents yet another moment when I reflected internally on how much smarter Colin is than yours truly.

4. Colin asked me what made our heads hard. I told him that a skull is a big bone that protects the brain and it is very hard. He said, "I wish that we could go somewhere and get an x-ray of our skulls so that we could look at our brains. And Enzo's." He went on to ask me to tell him the name of every bone in our body. I told him that he would have to google that one.

5. I got a NookColor for Christmas and Colin loves it. LOVES IT. I left it where he could reach it a couple of days ago, and he managed to turn it on, close the book I was reading, go to the home page and choose a childrens book and start it. Without me showing him how at all. I really wish we had an I-Pad because Colin has a hard time using the computer mouse (now I know why!), but give that kid a touch screen and he can figure out anything. He got his own reader for Christmas that uses the same touch technology and he adores it.

6. I have been a very bad girl this week. We had a cold front blow through here a couple of nights ago and it brought snow, ice and freezing temps. I took this to mean that I needed to cook chili and cornbread, pot roast and mashed potatoes with fresh rolls, potato leek soup (currently on the stove) and broccoli soup with homemade croutons (for tomorrow). CLEARLY, this is not a good diet week for Chalna. In my defense, I have been eating Special K and blueberries for breakfast and light lunches. However, my next trip to the grocery store will not include heavy cream. I refuse to gain back the weight that I tried so hard to lose. I only gained 4 lbs over the entire holiday season, which is pretty good for me, but those 4 lbs are going away! This week notwithstanding, of course. ;-)

7. Colin has taken to watching "A Baby Story" and "Make Room for Multiples" on TLC. This happened by accident one morning a few days ago when Jer turned the TV on. Colin saw a baby and asked him not to change the channel. I walked in several minutes later to find Colin watching a woman give birth. Granted, this is TLC, so they don't show too much, but it was the real deal. He started asking me questions, so I sat down and watched with him and answered as much as I could. I was shocked that he watched the whole show. The next show was about the multiples, which he asked to watch, too. That lady had a c-section, which I tried to turn off, but Colin went nuts and begged me to keep it on. I explained what the doctors were doing and that sometimes the doctors have to do surgery to help a baby be born. He didn't even flinch while watching and stayed glued to his seat for the entire half hour, which was mostly about the family being home with multiple newborns and taking care of them. We have watched both shows several mornings since and he adores them, c-sections and all. Heavens!

8. Back to my most prized possession...the NookColor. I can't stop reading. I literally can't. This present was like buying an alcoholic a bottle of vodka for Christmas. I am out of control. I have been averaging one book every 3 days, on top of all my magazines. I have had this problem my whole life, but the Nook takes it to a whole new level. I learned to read when I was 3, partially because of my brilliant mother and mostly because I was born a reading genius. I can say that without sounding like an ass because I am also math illiterate. Seriously. I still use my fingers to count. Anyway, I have always had an obsession with reading and the Nook is blowing my mind. As I am reading, if I see a word that I don't know, I just tap on it and I can have the definition and background pulled up right in front of me. I. LOVE. THIS. THING. Go get one. You MUST...even if you aren't a lunatic like me.
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