Sunday, July 31, 2011

Sweet Rewards

Well, I am not going to lie to you it is really hard to be a mom. (Not a shocker to all of you moms out there)  It is even harder to be a mom of kids with special needs or disabilities.  Its even harder to try to still be a wife, a sister, a friend, a homemaker, a daughter, and a business owner.  But this is not a gripe session.  Life is hard for everyone and we all have trials that we are given and they are all at different times in our lives. 

The last couple of days have been a bit hard for me and I have been COMPLETELY overwhelmed (way more than usual).   It seems as though whenever this happens, I am given "sweet rewards" to remind me of why I do what I do and that it is all worth it.  :)

These things may be little to you, but they are big to me!
  • Brody is awesome. I can't even begin to describe how different he is.  Over the last few days I have noticed even more growth and maturity.  I ask him to do something, he does it right away.  Not only is a good boy for not whining or complaining, but he actually immediately does the task and doesn't get off track.  I can even send him up the stairs to do something and he actually comes back!  He used to go upstairs, get distracted, and I would find him an hour later playing Legos.   
  • I also observed him in school and watched him do an entire math worksheet without moving, wiggling or needing his teacher to cover all the problems on the page besides the one he was working on.. 
  • He LOVES to read and it is so cute to see him reading and reading and reading.  He reads in the car, during meals, in bed and everything in between.  Don't worry - he still does plenty of other things. :)
  • He uses his words.  Rather than just yelling or screaming when a problem arises with his sister, he comes to me and talks to me about it. 
  • This morning something happened that just amazed me.  I was still mostly asleep but I heard Brody and Hazel come into the room and talk to Bo.  Then I heard Brody say "Sorry Papa".  And Bo said "for what?" Brody then said "I stepped on your clothes that were on the floor - I didn't see them there".  Bo told him that was okay and he walked out of the room.  I was SHOCKED!  Before Brain Balance if there was ANYTHING on the floor in Brody's road he just stepped right on it.  A book, a puzzle, clothes, toys, my foot, etc.  Most of the time he didn't even notice it.  It was as if it was just part of the floor.  I don't know how many times I had told him not to step or stand on things that were not the floor.  And now all of the sudden he didn't only notice that he stepped on clothes but he stopped and apologized for it.  This truly is amazing and made my whole day. 

There are probably more things, but that is all I can think of right now.

Oh wait - this one is HUGE!  Today we were outside and the kids were riding bikes and scooters.  Brody was on his Razor scooter and had a little crash.  I was preparing myself for the crying and freaking out over the tiniest little scratch.  But instead, Brody said he had an owie and ran in the house.  He wasn't crying or too upset and Bo and I were discussing something outside, so I didn't follow him in.  When I went in a little bit later I found Brody with a band aid on his leg.  I asked him what happened and he said that there was blood running a bit down his leg from his owie.  I told him I could clean it off and he said he already had washed it off, put antibiotic ointment on it and a band aid!  I could NOT believe that he was so self sufficient and just took care of himself like that! That has NEVER happened before.  What was even more amazing was that he wasn't crying, screaming and freaking out over a a scratch and some blood.  The band aid was actually already bloody and he had blood on his shorts so I know it wasn't just a tiny cut.  However, he handled himself so well and just took care of it. 

  • Wyatt is communicating so much!  The best part is that he is using words or phrases that were NOT previously taught during ABA therapy.  He had learned to say a ton of words, but NEVER used them.  Now he is using them so much AS WELL as talking and using words that we have never heard him say.  He also puts phrases together that were never taught.  That tells me that he is thinking for himself!  He is taking the knowledge in his head and the things he has been taught or has been observing and using them all on his own!
  • Yesterday he came to me and said "piggy back" so he got on my back and we started walking.  He then said "couch, lay down".  I LOVED it!  I love that he can tell me what he wants to do and where he wants to go and that I didn't teach him to do it.  He is learning it on his own. 
  • Today he was in my room and I kept trying to get him to go out.  He kept saying "train" so I told him we would go find his train.  He wouldn't come out and kept looking around the room and under the bed.  I asked Bo if he had seen a train and he said no.  Wyatt then said "white train".  It is so great that he is just putting words together and describing things like that!  So sure enough I kept looking and found a gray and white train under the bed.  That is all he wanted so he grabbed it and was on his way!
  • He also says things like "blue shirt", etc.  :)
  • He is understanding body language/non-verbal communication more.  He sees me move towards him like I am going to chase him and he smiles and turns and runs (even with his cast on!)
  • When asking for bacon he now says things like " one two bacon" or "three bacon".  It is so cute that he is telling us how many he wants!
  • Yesterday, I gave Wyatt a muffin which he calls "toast".  He always wants us to cut it up and won't just take bites of it (yet...)  This time I put it on his plate and tried to get him to take a bite of it and he wouldn't.  I was doing the dishes or something so I just left it there and walked away.  The next thing I knew, Wyatt had gotten a knife out of the drawer and went to sit back down.  Then he proceeded to cut his own muffin!  He used to just say "knife" or "cutting" so that we could cut it (which was also amazing!) But this is even better!  
Isn't he cute?!
  • Overall he just is at a higher cognitive level.  He understands what we say, he follows directions and he communicates back with us.  
Wyatt still has a long way to go, but seeing these kinds of things on a daily basis gives me the strength to continue on this journey for as long as it takes!

And then there is Hazel... What to say about Hazel?  :)  She is growing up so fast and will be 4 in ONE week!  I can't believe that my "baby" is that old.  She is doing so well overall.  However, she has been having a few tantrums here and there.  We have been working on using our words..  We are also working on cleaning up her own toys and things which she does NOT really like.  However, she is getting better.  Today the "toy monster" took some of her things which she will have to earn back. 

The other day she disappeared upstairs for awhile.  When she came downstairs it was obvious what she had been doing..

Eyes, lips hair combed and necklace and I didn't teach her any of it.  We are in trouble... :)
So much to tell you but so little time!  This is the latest I have been up probably since I moved home.  I have been so much more tired here and I can't figure out why.  I used to stay up until 3 am and get up at 6 or 7 and just keep on going.  But now I go to bed at 9:30 and get up at 6 and I am dragging all day.  What is going on?  My mother in law says I am just catching up on the last 5 years of sleep that I missed out on :) 


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