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Monthly Archives: August 2010

Adding even more therapies? *sigh*

Currently, my little Oliver receives two different kinds of therapies: Physical Therapy, to help his muscles learn to do things properly, and Occupational Therapy, to help his hands and brain coordinate putting together strings of fine motor skill accomplishments.

His PT is Joanne, a hippie-ish lady who enjoys Ollie’s company and is just as proud of him as we are with his latest accomplishment, whatever that might be. She has been working with Ollie once a week for about six months now.

Our Occupational Therapist is a Finnish woman who claims that Ollie “looks like a Viking” and has been working with him for just about a year now, at first every week, now down to every-other-week. She’s been talking of “graduating” Ollie from her services, seeing that, since he’s been sitting upright, his fine motor skills are even better than they were.

But, there’s talk (and action) of adding a couple more therapies into our repertoire.

Starting this Thursday, we are going swimming every week! This one is actually pretty exciting. Ollie loves loves loves being in water and the kid is a crazy kicker even when on dry-land that this water therapy should be awesome for him. Not only does it sound fun, but it also has some benefits that should help him get even more mobile (as I get bigger and less mobile!). We’re also going to work on his bi-lateral movements — using the left side then the right side — since he seems to have foregone the idea of crawling and chooses instead to butt-scoot around. From the sounds of it, it should help him get started on walking, which at 20 months actual, 17 months adjusted, he’s really not that far behind on, but if it helps him, it helps him, right?

Right.

Our other new therapy, this one being another every-other-week thing will be speech & eating. Luckily provided by the same therapist, she can work on both during her sessions.

He’s getting eating therapy since he still has the tendency to gag on things that he’s not used to. He isn’t tolerating any sort of table foods, and still needs a bottle a couple times a day, and we’re kinda at a standstill with sippy cup progress.  I’m not complaining, though, three months ago, he would eat one container of baby food throughout the entire day. Now he’s doing three containers of pureed food two or three times a day.

So, yes, he is progressing, very well, actually.

But he has a hard time with texture. Could be from being on a ventilator at birth, or it could just be him, there’s really no way to pin that one down. So, we’ll be working with a professional on feeding him — and getting him to feed himself, which will be AWESOME, considering in just four months, there’ll be another mouth around the house that needs feeding.

But then there’s speech.

I hate when people ask if he’s talking, because he’s not.

He has words; he knows words, his receptive language is fine. He understands what we’re saying pretty well, and probably has a good 20 or 30 words that he knows. If you ask him where’s Mama, he’ll look at me. Same for Dada, cat, light, turtle. Ask him where his tongue is, he’ll stick his out, say “all done!” and he’ll do his own version of sign language. Actions like that indicate he knows what you’re saying, and I’m not really toooooo worried about it yet.

But, dang, the kid just hasn’t uttered a word yet!

And I’m waiting for him to wake up from a nap and be hollering for Mama!

In his defense, I do have to do a little bit of background here….

Apparently, the human tongue is much longer than we think. Sure we all know a tongue is in your mouth, but its actual anchor is supposedly much further down into your throat area than anyone would expect, and is somewhat controlled by the muscles that help you sit up independently, positions your shoulders properly, moves your head around…all sorts of things that Ollie was having difficulties with.

Because those muscles were underdeveloped, he didn’t babble very much for a very long time.

Until he started sitting independently and unsupported.

Now, much of the day is punctuated by good-good-goods and ba-ba-bas and deedle-deedle-deedles and a few ahahas and woooows.

It’s pretty awesome how much he’s “talking” lately.

Anyway, because he doesn’t have any words at all yet (that we know) we’ll be starting the speech part of speech & eating therapy.

So there’s our list of therapies that we’re getting. We’re still doing the chiropractor every other week, and we try to not double up his therapies on one day. Too much pushing will wear him out. So Mondays are for PT, Wednesdays are for OT/chiropractor, Thursdays are for pool therapy now, and well, we’re not exactly sure when speech will begin yet.

Sheesh, I’m wiped out just thinking about it. I wanted to look for a playgroup to join, or story time at the library, but right now it just seems a bit on the difficult side.

But, he needs the help, and I’m happy to get it to him.

 
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Posted by on August 24, 2010 in Uncategorized

 

Orville and Wilbur Wright did some pretty awesome things together. So did the BeeGees.

When I was little, like 3 years old little, I remember a conversation I had with my mom. Because it’s been about a few decades since this conversation took place, I don’t remember the exact wordings, but the gist of the discussion went like this:

Three Year Old Me said...

When I’m a grown-up, my name will magically change to my mother’s. I will be married to fella who’s name happens to be my father’s, and I will have three children, two big brothers and a little girl. Those brothers will have my brothers’ names, and the little girl will be called Lisa.

In short, I will live my mother’s life.

What a bizarre thing for a kid to come up with, hey?

—Fast forward thirty years—

I was right.

While my name remains Lisa, as it has been since birth, and I did not marry a man called Leon, I am, however, two-thirds of the way to having my “two big brothers and a little girl.”

Ollie is going to be a Big Brother to a Little Brother!

When I was brewing up Ollie, we were set against finding out the gender of the little guy. As Matt pointed out, he could “assume it’s a boy until proved otherwise.”

Of course he was a boy, our little Ollie.

This time around, I had my heart set ON finding out. Since Ollie’s baby shower actually happened AFTER he was born, we have already lots and lots of boy stuff – clothes and blankets and bedding – even though we were surprised at birth on his gender. So, with no gender-neutral green or yellow outfits around, if this one popped out a girl, she would be dressed in train and airplane onesies and wrapped up in puppy dog blankets.

No! No! No! This will not do!

If we had shopping to do, I wanted to get it done NOW. Instead of waiting until I am much further along and fighting snowy days and Christmas shoppers to find her a good “going-home” outfit, I wanted to stock up on cowgirl bedding and find her a “Daddy’s Little Girl” onesie sooner than later.

So, really somewhat against Matt’s arguments that “it’s just not right!” I answered “yes” when the technician asked if I wanted to know. (He knew I was going to find out, it’s not like he doesn’t know I know or anything like that.)

Besides, it was mostly his idea to be surprised when Ollie was born and he got his way the first time around, I get my way this time around and found out.

And there HE was, giving the technician a hard time.  An actual yawning, tongue moving, wiener-having little guy.

I’m not about to lie, I was sorta thinking Old Number 2 here might be a girl, but as soon as I saw he was a boy, I knew that this is how my family should be. While still in the ultrasound room, I tried out “he” and it felt natural…The absolute perfect complement to my little guy at home.

I’m soooo not against having two little boys around!

I’ve seen my brothers grow up being pretty good friends, and with only 2 years between them, I’m hoping that’s how my boys will be. Crazy, goofy times will be ahead I’m sure.

Besides, Orville and Wilbur Wright did some pretty awesome things together. So did the BeeGees.

My boys.

My two boys.

Whoa.

Yep, this is how it’s supposed to be. I’ve known this since I was three years old.

 
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Posted by on August 23, 2010 in Uncategorized

 

We worked hard this summer!

This is the end, my friend.

I remember last summer, my first summer as a Stay-At-Home-Mom, I was skeptical about how well it was going to go with Matty being off for the summer. With us being in each other’s spaces all day long, how were we not going to kill each other?

I wasn’t looking forward to it, honestly. Sorry, Matty.

This year was a bit the same. I wasn’t dreading it, but I wasn’t looking forward to it, either.  24/7 interaction can be trying sometimes if you have a tiny house, frustrated child, and a pregnant lady all rolled into one. It can be the perfect storm of nitpicking, complaining about another episode of Hawaii Five-O, pointing out the details of a conversation that the other person clearly missed while playing on the internet and not paying 100% attention to every word. And, I had worked to get Ollie on a schedule, and wasn’t looking forward to Matty’s sometimes flippant attitude to naps.

Sounds great, right?

But then, the exhaustion started; the exhaustion of being pregnant that started up sometime in May. Before the school year ended, Matt would walk in the door, I would head to bed, snuggling down for a two-hour nap. It was ridiculous, really.

And then I started looking forward to him being around all day every day.

It’s.  Been.  AWESOME!

We worked out a schedule early on where everyone was happy with what tasks we were doing during the day, with Matty getting sufficient time in the garage to work on things. I think we’ve all been pretty happy with the set up.

We actually did stuff!

We plopped Ollie in his VW Bug and took short walks around the neighborhood.

We started planning outings to get us all out of the house, so we weren’t all up in each other’s grills all day.

Like the day we went to see The Fonz in downtown Milwaukee.

And when we went to see the Evel Kneivel display at the Harley Museum, where Ollie sat on a motorcycle for the first (and likely not the last) time.

We checked out some vintage airplanes, including the perennial favorite, WWII Bomber, B-17 at a local small airport, with the family around Father’s Day. This event is always fun, and Ollie’s now been there twice.

And, rode on a boat, a tractor, a train, a wagon, done some visiting, went to some appointments, helped both my Grandma and my parents move (all in the same week!) and nearly mastered the art of crawling. We really didn’t go more than 3 days without something to do, whether it was seeing a doctor, having therapy, driving to see Matt’s parents two hours away or just working on stuff.

Who would have thought that the summertime, when the ‘living is easy” would have been this busy?

But, today.

Today was the last day of Matty’s summertime.

Today was our last walk to our corner Walgreens and thrift store.

Today, he shaved off his summer sideburns, put away his Dr. Scholl’s velcro shoes, washed his motorcycle for the (likely) the last time this season, and readies himself for another school year.

Tomorrow, he goes back to work.

Five days a week, 10 hours a day.

I’m honestly sad to see him go. We’ve been good buddies all summer long. Just a few little tiffs in a string of days that were sunny and delightful. Now it’s just me and Ollie, again.

We’ll have to work on his nap schedule and dance around the four-times-a-week therapies we’ll be starting soon, but we make it work. My daily nap will just be after 4pm now, once Matty is home and all is well again.

 
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Posted by on August 23, 2010 in Uncategorized