Archive of ‘motherhood’ category

The "Right" Time

A lot of emphasis is put on doing things at the “right” time. 

  • Your significant other breaks up with you and says, “It’s all in timing, maybe if we had met a few years ago…”
  •  You discuss with your  spouse about having a baby and you decide to wait a year or two after getting married, because then it will be the right time.
  •  You choose not to move out of your house because the market isn’t good, it is just not the right time.  
  •  You put off going back to school because it is just isn’t the right time, you are too busy.
  • You go to Disney World when the kids are old enough to remember the rides, because that seems like the right time to go. 
  •  Your child isn’t walking/talking/eating/sitting up/smiling yet, and you are told, he is just not ready, it isn’t his time yet.
  •  I’ll go back to work when he or she is_____(fill in age) because then it will be the right time.

Recently this last one has been swirling around in my already full head (not full of smarts, full of entirely too many thoughts).  My last few weeks have been filled with mixed emotions.  One minute I am talking a mile a minute to a fellow co worker about our class this year and feeling the excitement and jittery nerves that come with planning for the school year. The next  minute I am sitting slack jawed watching Evan as he stacks almost five blocks on his
own and reveling in his progress and how much I adore him.  Of course in that minute, I am struck with the realization that my face to face time with him will be less come September.  And sometimes that realization just feels wistful and sort of sad, but sometimes it feels overwhelming and like a brick is sitting on my chest.
 I know, yikes.
This coming from the girl who sat holding a newborn baby in July 2011 and could not possibly imagine wanting to be a stay at home mom for very long at all. Sigh…..if I could just talk some sense into that girl.
Anyway……what I am getting at is this. 

Up, up, and away!

Evan will be going to an public preschool when he turns three.  It is inclusive, meaning that he will be with students with and without special needs.  He is already eligible for the program because of his enrollment in the early intervention program.  Even if I was able to stay home another year, fast forward to the month before he goes to preschool, and I can almost guarantee I would have be having the same feelings. Fast forward two years to when he goes to kindergarten. Same feelings. Fast forward to the summer before seventh grade when he is going into the junior high school. 
Yup, you guessed it.

 Ditto.
The “right” time is sort an illusion.  A concept to help us feel like we are making the right decision. Ugh, that word right just keeps coming up.
It would be awesome if there was a test you could take to tell you it was the right time to do something.  
Kind of like in YM magazine. “Are you made for each other?” “Are you more romantic or athletic?” “Are you ready for a boyfriend?” 
Man I loved those quizzes. They even had an issue that was ALL quizzes. But I digress…..

Maybe Julia should have taken a quiz before deciding on this haircut.


The point is, there is no litmus test to tell us when the right time is for any decision, change, of life event. So for me, it is just a matter of taking a deep breath, keeping the faith, and making the leap.  And I need to keep in mind that there are MANY others who have taken this same leap and landed quite nicely on the other side. I have plenty of people holding a safety net for me when I take these leaps. Lucky gal, I am.  

About to take a leap

Stumbling a bit, but I got right back up again.


 Disclaimer: Those pictures were actually a reenactment. We were trying to reenact the opening scene of The Sound of Music where Maria spins in a circle filled with hope and glee. We were visiting the Trapp Family Lodge in Vermont. I don’t want you to think I put copyrighted material on the blog since it looks so authentic.

🙂 

In a heartbeat.

What would I do for my son in a heartbeat? 

I would jump in front of a car. I would plunge into deep water. I would give him water, drink, shelter before I would give it to myself.

I would take him to numerous doctor’s appointments. I would check on him every night,  putting my hand on his back gently, just to make sure he was breathing easily.

I would go home early from events to make sure he gets to bed at a reasonable hour. I would wear sweet potato and Pediasure stains on my shirt like a badge of honor. 

I would hold up an Octopus and make him sing and talk 23 times in a row, because Evan is using his way of communicating to request that.

 I would stand behind him on every piece of playground equipment because he just isn’t ready to be on them independently yet. 

I would listen to him bounce in his crib so hard that it shakes the floor boards. I would spend his “nap” time watching him do raspberries, shout and bounce in our video monitor. 

I would put pieces of french toast onto his high chair tray, one at a time, so that he has the chance to demonstrate good oral motor skills while eating, even if it means a meal takes about an hour at a time.

Do you know what I would not do in a heartbeat?
This shocked even me.
I would not take away his Williams Syndrome.  

To be honest, I probably would have, if you had asked me a year ago.  I was still so angry that my child was going to face extra obstacles for the rest of his life.  I was angry that even though I love my students with special needs (and always have), I did not sign up to have one at home.

But, time changes a LOT.

I have talked to other mothers about this topic.  And some disagree. Some admit they would take away the disability in a heartbeat. 
I completely respect and understand that.  

It pains me to imagine Evan being bullied. To imagine him sitting in a classroom, trying to do the appropriate thing, but struggling to figure it out. It is hard to have him play with his age appropriate peers and watch them speak with ease to each other while Evan bounces and holds onto a chair, excited to communicate with them but unable to in a clear fashion.


I am sure you have heard about the scientific advances in chromosomal therapy in regards to Downs Syndrome.  Here is an article that sums it up.  It is a very tough issue to consider.  I can totally see both sides of the issue.

But for me, when I think of Evan, and I think of the completely fictional idea (for now) that something could be done to “correct” his genetic condition, I would not want to do that.  

Evan is who he is, and part of what makes him Evan is his genetic code.  I would not want to change that for the world.  He stared at me today for about 12 minutes straight while I sang three rounds of a church hymn that he loves. He would not take his eyes off of me. His little soul is just so beautiful and I know that if he were to have the missing genetic material, he would not be the Evan we have grown to love so much.  

Just like if you were to take away the genetic information that makes me overly sensitive, prone to gain weight easily, and clumsy as all get out- I would not be Erin. I just wouldn’t. 

Clearly this is just my opinion, my experience, my son.  

There is much I would do for Evan.  Much.  But in a heartbeat,
 I would not change who he is.  



W is for walking- w-w-walking….T is for toddler. T-t….typical…?

If you would like to sing along with this entry’s title, please watch this. I probably sing a version of that song about 20 times a day. No, I am not exaggerating.  Music is the cure for everything when it comes to Evan.

So since posting the walking video at the park last week– we took a vacation to Vermont and are now home safe.  I expected that Evan would be toddling all over Stowe. Alas, he continued to prefer crawling and even with prompting, did not do much independent walking.

Then this happened on Monday:

Our awesome physical therapist takes us to the Children’s Discovery Museum in Cherry Hill occasionally and she works with Evan using the exhibits and equipment.  Clearly, it is highly motivating for him as you can see in the video.  Since Monday when he took off walking all over the museum, he has been attempting it more and more. He needs a reminder now and then to stand up, because I think he is just so used to immediately dropping down to crawl that he forgets.  It is so exciting to see him taking risk after risk and trying so hard to stay upright as long as he can. 

Then today rolls around and he eats almost two whole pieces of french toast, I started having him use a step stool to wash his hands, and he helped me “clean up” some of his toys.  Big boy!  He also has begun testing limits big time.  He has known the meaning of the word “no” for quite some time. He doesn’t always listen to it, but he does take a moment to process it and it gives me a second to intervene. Today he started to do things he knows he is not supposed to, for example, pulling my earring out, or grabbing remote controls.  He starts to do the forbidden activity and then looks over at me and says “ohh? ohhh?” Basically prompting me to say no.  So I do, and then he tries again.
Tonight this happened approximately five times in a row.
After he skipped his nap.
Suffice it to say, I was pretty frustrated. I tried to be “Super Nanny” and repeatedly remove him from the situation, and be as calm as I could be.  It took a lot of deep breaths.

It was one of those nights where I was counting down the moments until E’s bedtime so I could have some time to myself.  Then I started our bedtime routine. I wrapped him like a burrito in his weighted blanket, we fed the fish, and sat down to sing some songs in the nursery rocker. He has been really into “You are my Sunshine,” lately so I started singing that.  He cozied up in my lap, leaned his head against my chest and looked up at me with those sparkly eyes.  It was very apparent that he was content. Content to simply be in my lap, listening to a song he loves.

I know he was displaying typical toddler behavior when he was seeking to hear “no” over and over.

I was actually kind of thrilled.  
That is one of the funny parts of being a mama to a child with special needs.
You rejoice when they throw “typical” tantrums. 
You rejoice when they eat french toast without gagging. Almost two WHOLE pieces of toast!
You rejoice when they move their fingers together at the right times during “Itsy Bitsy Spider.”
But the way I felt holding him in the rocker tonight, that wasn’t unique to special needs mamas.
That was just good old fashioned mama love. 

Come on up, there is room for two!

Yesterday I took Evan to a new playground.  Taking him to a playground always sounds great to me in theory.  I get excited for him to play on the equipment, have opportunities to try walking, climbing, and socializing.  Change of scenery for both of us, which is nice.  Then I get there, and many times I end up leaving with a knot in my stomach. 
-Sometimes there are lots of parents and kids. Which is great when you can let your child run and play or at least step back from them a little when they are in the sandbox or small equipment.  But I can’t do that. (not yet anyway, I know the day will come). So instead, I follow him around like a hawk, supporting him as he climbs, pushing him on the swing, and trying to keep him from crawling after strollers. 
-Sometimes those parents do very normal, kind things like ask me how old Evan is when they see him crawling or trying to walk and keeling over.  Then I take a moment and say 2. More often than not, the very kind parent will look slightly quizzically at me and at Evan and then say, oh… and smile.  Sometimes I follow that up with, “he is a young 2.” But other than that, I don’t really delve into it.  But then there is an awkwardness, an unspoken understanding that we both know that he looks a little small for two, and his babbling and lack of walking do not really reflect his age either.
-Sometimes Evan will find a child he is interested in, and try to communicate with him or her with babbles, or use their pant leg to stand up.  Luckily children have been pretty kind to Evan and they will tolerate this or even try to engage him.  Once or twice though, he has been met with a scowl and a “what are you saying??”

Yesterday however, was not one of those days.

This happened:

Evan was walking to get to the little boy on the rocking plane.  I kept at a distance to see how long he would independently walk.  When he reached the plane, I overheard the boy saying to Evan,

“Hey! Come on up! There is room for two!”

That may not always happen.
But yesterday it did.
Kindness exists, and so does hope.
I will continue to believe that more of these moments will happen.

Your child will be loved….

 Warning, no cute pictures in this entry. But please read, this means a lot to me. Especially if you are a mother or father of a child with special needs who is going to school in the future.

Some things slip by me. Especially post pregnancy and delivery of a certain toddler.  Things take longer to sink in, and concepts once so readily available in my brain- are now just out of reach.
So today, when all of a sudden I realized that Evan is going to be okay in school, I felt a little dim for taking so long to feel that way.
This is what happened. Try to follow this spectacular train of thought. (cough) I am a special education teacher by trade. I taught for 11 years and then took two years off to be home with Evan. I have taught elementary level almost that whole time: grades 2,3, and 4- resource room and co-teaching settings.  An old co worker/friend of mine made a comment to me that her son told her she looked beautiful and that it made her day.  That brought to mind the time that a certain student told me he liked my headband and gave me a compliment. Without thinking twice, I felt myself reminiscing and I told her it was one of the best moments in all my years of teaching. In 11 years, the memory of this little third grader telling me he liked my head band is what stuck with me.
Let’s call him C. C was a student who had to work harder than the majority of other kids his age. He was smaller in stature, could be riddled with anxiety, and struggled with different learning disabilities.  C did not enjoy participating in class and would rarely initiate conversations, but would respond when spoken to. He didn’t have a slew of friends, but he did have a few classmates who would stick up for him, help out, and be by his side on the playground and classroom. I taught him for two years in the resource room setting.  In my school district, resource room refers to a “pull-out” educational program where a child receives certain academic subject in a separate classroom at the same time his or her peers is receiving instruction in the homeroom setting. Or as we call it, the general ed setting.  I taught C math and language arts.  His anxiety could get so intense that he had to wear gloves on his hands because he would pick at the skin until he bled.  C’s voice was gravely and he often would speak very quickly and without regard to grammar rules. Often his attempts to communicate would be riddled with frustration, almost as if it annoyed him to have to answer your question or speak at all. 
I.
LOVED.
THAT.
KID.
And I still do.  He provided some unique challenges in the classroom, and some days were tougher than others. But, I loved him.  I stuck up for him in IEP meetings. I smiled wide when he would participate in social studies class and I happened to be there to witness it.  I would talk to my mom about my students and relay story after story of C’s progress.  I had the highest respect for his step mother, who would do anything for him, and did just that day after day. 
One day, I was teaching in front of my small group of 6 boys in the resource setting.  C sort of half raised his hand, and half pointed at me.  I called on him, thinking he might have had a question. He simply replied, “I like that.” Having no idea what he was talking about, I asked for him to repeat his question. He pointed again at me, and said, “That, I like that.” I then realized he was pointing more towards my head, so I absentmindedly touched my hair and felt the pink scarf I was wearing in my head.  He said, “Yea, that. I like it. You look good.”
Then a small shy smile, and that was it.
I thanked him, and he got embarrassed and I knew not to push it.  Inside I was bursting at the seams. My heart was completely full. With just eight words, he had affirmed why I teach.  C did not compliment you. He especially did not do it spontaneously. He ESPECIALLY did not do it twice, because you didn’t hear him the first time.
I remember that I shared this compliment with everyone I knew, particularly the teachers who also knew C, and had worked with him before.  They all shared in my joy. If I remember correctly, I also wrote his step mom a note because I knew she would also share in my joy. 
C is now 17 years old. I am friends with his stepmother on Facebook so I have been able to see him grow.  I’ve seen the pictures of his braces, his first horseback ride, his first FORMAL DANCE. 
C is not the only student I have felt this way about.  I have connected very deeply with other students as well.  One student I taught in third grade, and tutored for years and years after. She is going into her senior year of high school now, and I share in her accomplishments like she is a part of my family. 
My child will be loved
Your child will be loved. 
How do I know this?
Because for eleven years, before I gave birth to a child who has special needs, I taught and loved my students. My students with special needs. My students who struggled harder than the majority. My students who had trouble making friends. My students who fought me tooth and nail to write a sentence. My students who threw books on the floor, and spit on the desk in anger. My students who wrote me secret notes, telling me that they didn’t like school, but they loved my class. My students who would poke holes in their pants out of a need to release their anxiety. 
My student who told me he liked my headband. 
I had days where I felt like I couldn’t do it again the next day. But I loved those kids. And I still do. Enough to go back to work in the fall.
And guess what, there are PLENTY of teachers like me. Plenty. I’m not claiming every teacher is perfect, and believe me, I had had some B.A.D. days. But overall, teachers care about your kids.
Our kids.
A lot.

My child will be loved.

Your child will be loved.

What did we do to deserve this?

Evan and Andrew (in typical early fashion- October 2011)

When Evan was about 3 or 4 months old, I had a friend watch him for an hour while I went to counseling.  She lived near to the counselor at the time and her son is ten weeks older than Evan. This was pre-diagnosis, and I was in an anxious, exhausted, frustrated, new mom state.  Evan was a horrible sleeper, waking up numerous times a night, and crying for hours in the evening.  When he was happy, he was happy but the times he wasn’t…phew.  I thought the hour would be doable, and the kids weren’t mobile so they would just happily roll around on a mat, right?
Well, I return to a very apologetic and frazzled friend who was trying to be a good friend and not  make a big deal about it, but basically, Evan cried the whole time and made her son cry as well.  Sigh…Todd came by afterwards and we had dinner with their family.  On the way home, we both said, almost at the same time, “When is Evan going to be as pleasant as Andrew?” Andrew smiled almost the whole time we were there, barely any tears, and was just happy to be alive and hanging out with us.  It seemed like Evan was going to “crank” as we called it, at any minute, for the rest of his and our lives.

Fast forward to this weekend, Evan is now almost 2 years old.  We made the very bold decision to take him overnight tent camping.  Todd has been ready for this for a while now, and I have been pushing it off.  I was worried for numerous reasons, the biggest one being the sleeping situation. I just couldn’t imagine how Evan would do in a tent, and how we would do sleeping right next to him in said tent!  Let alone the possibilities of bears, bugs, lack of nap, constant need to entertain, etc.
Let me also share that we decided to take him kayaking. Kayaking for an indeterminate amount of time, approximately an hour or more, with no real ability to stop if he is not handling it too well.
And this we HAVE done before, and he has not been a very big fan.  Did I mention that all week we were preparing for warm weather with sunshine? And Mommy and Daddy did not bring rain gear? And that it poured the entire time we kayaked? Ahem…..Live and learn.

Shake Shake Shake, Shake your maraca!

So….we drove the two+ hours to get to the campground. We put Evan in a stroller and start setting up camp. His Grammy rolled him around and he was content as a clam to talk to her and look around. We then put him in his portable high chair and put it in one of the camp chairs, and it sat in a precarious way that made him tilt backwards a bit. As I put him in and started to feed him lunch, I thought there was no way he would last more than ten minutes in this position. About an hour later, after he ate a whole jar of stage three food, and a Jammy Sammy, sang songs and played with his new maracas straight from Mexico (thanks Seese Family!)- THEN he was ready to get out of the chair. Ok I was wrong. Only once, right? Moving along….

Kayaking as a family in Delaware Water Gap- Evan just shy of 2 years

Then we go kayaking. Luckily my mother and father in law are seriously sent from Heaven and they lent Evan and me some stellar rain gear. Within the first 20 minutes or so, Evan wiggled around, going between happy and singing, and then uncomfortable and sleepy. Oh, I forgot to mention that he had been up since about 7 am, and it was 2 pm now, no nap, pouring rain, in….a…..kayak. I sang songs to him ad nauseaum, fed him a cereal bar, and kept him as occupied as I could. The rain started coming down hard and he tried over and over to fall asleep on my shoulder. Alas, two life jackets pushing together in pouring rain does not a comfortable bed make.  Although my nerves were a bit on edge as I maneuvered him all around and poor Todd had to paddle for all three of us- it ended up being a pretty nice ride, and Evan kept calm for the majority of it.
Because of the rain jacket that was so kindly lent to us by my in laws- Evan only had a few little spots of water on his pants when we got out of the kayak. Oh!!! I forgot to mention that about halfway into the kayak excursion, he had a dirty diaper. And not a little one. A three alarmer, multiple wipe diaper. Where were the diapers and wipes? Oh they were in the van back at where we started. So when we got out of the kayak, Todd had to drive back to get the van and drive back to us so I could change the poor guy.  Again, bad planning on our part. Evan could have cared less. (until his poor bum hurt the next day- Guilt Guilt Guilt….

My adorable husband playing for little E
That’s right, he’s wearing a faux backpack.
Reading Baby Boo for the 3,945th time.

 We finally get back to the campsite, we pass Evan around while each of us get out of our wet clothes.  The ground is sopping wet with mud and Evan doesn’t walk on his own yet, so we couldn’t just put him down and let him crawl around.  Especially considering there is no “bath-time” when tent camping. Enter the pack-and-play. We put some fun toys and books in there and put it right next to the action, where everyone was hanging out, eating, and talking.  He stood up and talked to whoever would talk to him. (yup, I did look up whether or not to use whomever or whoever in that sentence) He sang songs, played with his toys and read his peekaboo baby book over and over. He also played peekaboo up and down the side of the pack and play repeatedly with his Aunt Rhonda.

Reading with Grammy by the fire

It began to get chilly so we put him in flannel pj’s and his winter bear suit that he wore when it got really cold. It was the only way to ensure that he would be warm when he went to sleep since I forgot his weighted blanket at home. (Are you sensing a Mommy Fail trend here?)  We put him to sleep in the tent around 8:30 pm and he fell asleep in about 30 minutes. With the noise of bugs, fellow campers, a cub scout troop two sites down, a wedding reception across the water blasting out typical reception fare such as Psy’s Gangnam Style, and Beyonce’s Crazy in Love….Evan fell asleep and slept until 6 am.
6 am.
9 hours.
I probably slept about 4 total.

Over and over again, Evan proves my doubts to be wrong. He takes my worries and removes their weight. He looks up at me with that grin, and immediately grounds me.  And I have feeling he will continue to do that for the rest of my life.  I pray that he does.

Seriously.
What did we do to deserve this? 

Evan Robert almost 2 years

When It Just Isn’t Fair

I was going to post a video of Evan standing on his own for a little bit, and share about some of the fun things he has done this week.
And I will. But not today.

Today I want to honor a friend and her sweet family who have become a part of my daily life as well.  Her name is Kate Leong, and I have shared several of her blog posts with you already.  She is the author of Chasing Rainbows. I have been following her family for a while now. I connected with her a few months ago when I reached out to her and thanked her for the post, Dear You. She wrote me back personally, which I was shocked by, and we started an email correspondence. She is truly a remarkable woman, amazing really, but at the same time, a regular mom doing what she can to take care of her family the best way she knows how. This past week her son Gavin was admitted to the hospital and within a few short days, was in very serious condition due to several major cardiac events.  They do not know yet what caused all of this.  I have been thinking of them non stop since she first posted about the first cardiac arrest. I have been lying up at night thinking about them sitting vigil next to their beautiful son.  This is one of those times I wish I wasn’t so darn sensitive. Because then maybe I could be like my level headed husband and realize that he is going to be in Heaven, with his siblings and that his parents will be with him again one day. Instead, I sit here crying, feeling pain in my head, my stomach and heart, that Kate and her family have to say goodbye to Gavin, a true inspiration.  
Just look at this face:

I have not been able to look at a picture of him without immediately smiling back at his kind eyes and smile. I have gone through the whole “life is precious,” “enjoy every moment” process many times throughout the past few years.  But for some reason, it doesn’t get any easier, each time a beautiful soul is lost.
I pray that Kate and her husband will feel carried by their family, friends, and God. That they will know they are not alone. They are far from it. And Gavin is the furthest from alone.
Thank you, Kate, for your honesty, for sharing this difficult week with so many of us. Like my husband said, your post today was hard to read, but encouraging.  You wrote an encouraging post when you are facing the most incredibly heavy burden I can fathom.  That speaks volume of who you are, and who Gavin helped you to become.
Gavin, I miss you already, without having ever met you in person. I had hoped that Evan would get to meet you one day and you would smile and giggle at each other.  One day you will.  In the meantime, he will continue to watch your Bruno Mars dancing video and sing and dance along.

Alleluia

I have been singing as a part of the worship band at church and because I am not an expert musician, I practice a lot at home singing the harmonies. Evan has been picking up on a lot of what I have been singing without me even realizing it. Todd taught Evan to “kiss” during a song too, and I was trying to get him to do it on camera, but if you listen closely, I didn’t get the kiss- but I did hear him say “kiss from me to you” all as one word. That is what I am going to believe anyway…. 😉

Alleluia means to praise God, and in some translations it represents joy.

 Well. this video is my definition of joy- my son singing along with me.

Catch Ya on The Flip Side

Flip Fantasia
I carried so high!

I have been trying to find the time to write this post for weeks now.  I have found myself thinking a lot lately about how grateful I am to be on the “flip side” of different situations.

For example,
-I am very glad to not be 40 weeks pregnant anymore. Glad to not be sitting on the yoga ball, rocking around trying to make contractions happen. Worrying about how our child was doing inside of me. I am glad to have him here with us, growing stronger every day.

Love him

-I am glad to be almost three years out from losing my father.  Please do not read this to mean I am glad my father is no longer with us. That could not be further from the truth. But I am glad to be past the brick-on-my-chest, excruciating grief stage that came for months to follow. I am glad to be at a point where I can talk about it him without crying. (most of the time) I can laugh and share stories about his colorful life with friends and family as to keep his memory alive.

-I am glad it has been almost a year since receiving Evan’s diagnosis.  We are far from feeling completely at ease with everything, but I know that I feel much more settled than I did last summer. I know that it seems like I am always trying to put a positive spin on things on here. And honestly, I probably am, but that is because this is my blog, and that is just how I operate a lot of the time. I just
don’t see merit in focusing for too long on the negative. It doesn’t get me anywhere. I still get mad. I get sad. I ache inside for many different reasons at different times. I am sensitive and emotional and have been my whole life. But that sensitivity also allows me the ability to see the struggles of others. And our struggles just don’t seem as monumental as what I see happening out there.

A few weeks after finding out
And although I wish my little guy would not face adversity as he grows, I also realize that he is incredible. He is incredible because of ALL he is. And that includes having a genetic condition called Williams Syndrome. That includes his raspy giggly voice. That includes his constant vowel sound imitation.  That includes his dislike for pieces of fruit. That includes his engaging, sparkly blue eyes. I could not realize that right away. I could not get past the websites, the pictures, the descriptions of what his life might be like 5, 10, 20 years from now. I couldn’t accept that our future was going to be different from what we had pictured. 
 But I am on the flip side now. 

I am helping to organize a 5K walk and run to benefit the Williams Syndrome Association. I organized an event at a local restaurant as another fundraiser. I have met several families with children who also have WS. I have made amazing friendships with some women that I feel extremely connected to in a very short amount of time.
 I don’t know when the transition happened. When I crossed over into a different world. A world of celebrating the little things. A world of special needs blogs. A world of weekly early intervention appointments. A world of research studies.
All that matters is that it did.
Sometimes I read accounts of other individuals who are struggling; who are barely keeping their heads above water. Life has decided to kick them in the gut with something too hard to handle. It could be a diagnosis, a loss, shocking news.
 My wish is that they could know in their heavy hearts that they, too, will be on the flip side. It may not be tomorrow, it may not be the year to follow. But they will get to that flip side. Hang in there. Remember other difficult times you have muddled through. You will get there.

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April Fools Mama!

I still have a few more lengthy and thoughtful posts I want to write. (and planned to write tonight, but Todd surprised me and came home early from a dinner with a growler of my favorite brew and I blog better when alone)
But I digress…….
So this weekend Evan did some amazing things, one of which was to plow through a plate of breaded fish nuggets and sweet potato nuggets. I was blown away. He has not eaten that quantity of solid food in one sitting….pretty much ever. We are working with the new speech therapist with his pushing the food into the side of his mouth and getting him away from chewing in the front of his mouth so much. I bragged about his plateful to everyone I came in contact with all weekend.
This brings us to today. After a full day of OT, an impromptu playdate with his pal Sean, and a good 2.5 hour nap, I baked this for dinner:

Dr. Praeger’s fishies and sweet potato tots

I sat down all excited and proud of myself for actually turning the oven on for Evan’s dinner. (no comment please) One bite in, and I already knew this wasn’t going to go like it did last time.

This face welcomed my cooking attempt.

Hmmmmm….

And…..cue food falling out of his mouth.

Oh well. I let it get to me for a few minutes. Then I realized, the food became cold relatively quickly. Who likes to eat fish cold? (besides sushi, I know, I know) And, because of his good, long, and LATE nap- I gave him a small smoothie when he woke up and I think he might have been a bit full from that too.

April Fools Mama! You thought you could take that picture and post and brag about it, 
but instead,
 I showed you, I am a toddler and I will eat what I wanna.
And a year ago this time, he was barely drinking 2 oz at a sitting and vomiting several times a day.
So I am still celebrating every meal. 
🙂

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