Friday, June 15, 2012

Friday at the Farm: Ready for Vacation

Today was our last Friday at the therapy center for the month of June. On Tuesday, my mom and I will fly back to Colorado with the kids and I'll stay for 3 weeks.

To keep up with Gwyneth's therapy, here's our "homework" right now for each area:

For Speech Therapy, we are trying to get Gwyn comfortable with some oral motor stimulation which is like a massage around her mouth. The therapist has suggested trying an electric toothbrush or something that vibrates.

For OT, I'll be bringing Gwyn's therapeutic listening headphones with us to continue that program.

For PT, I am bringing the kids swimming gear with the hopes that we can have some time in a pool. Also, we found a wonderful resource in Colorado: a place that sells used adaptive equipment for a very low price. We bought a pediatric reverse walker like the one Gwyn uses at home. So she will have that to walk around with at my parent's house.

Looking forward to a great vacation!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Test Results and Conversations

We have received the results of all the tests they did from the blood drawn two weeks ago.  Everything is good!  Gwyneth is negative for Celiac, the Thyroid panel was in normal range, and the Chromosomal tests confirmed Trisomy 21 but did not show any other genetic issues.  So we have checked those things off our list to think about for now.

Before her surgery, Reid took Gwyn to the pediatric neurologist to have another X-ray done of her spine so she could be cleared for anesthesia.  Last July, her C-spine X-ray showed possible Atlanto-Axial Instability which puts her at risk for a spinal cord injury.  So activities such as gymnastics, hippotherapy (horseback riding), and being put under general anesthesia can be dangerous because of the risk to her spine.  But good news: this recent second X-ray showed that the gap between vertebrae was small enough that the neurologist said her activities do not need to be limited.  We are so excited that hippotherapy and maybe gymnastics could be in her future.

Gwyneth is now back to "normal" again after her tonsil surgery.  We have not been back to therapy yet, but we are going tomorrow.  She is better than normal really because she seems very active and much more vocal.  Reid noticed very soon after the surgery that her voice seemed easier to understand.  I think she is talking more in general, but she also seems to be enunciating better.  I don't know if this is related to her tonsils and part of her adenoids coming out, or if it is coincidence.  But with all of the new speech happening, we have been having some very cute and funny "conversations" with her:

Gwyn (waking up): "Go school today?"
Mommy: "No, there's no school today."
Gwyn: "Okay, watch George" (meaning: Allright, I'll just watch the Curious George show!)

Mommy (just before dinnertime): "Gwyn, do you want to eat some vegetables?"
Gwyn: "Mmm hmm, chicken dip-dip ketchup" (meaning: Yes, and chicken nuggets to dip in ketchup)

Gwyn mentions something about "School" (doing the sign language for School)
Mommy: "Gwyn, do you like school?"
Gwyn: "Yes"
Mommy: "What do you do at school?"
Gwyn (thinks for a few seconds): "Paint!" (adding the sign for Paint)

(At the grocery store check-out)
Check-out Girl to the kids sitting together in a cart: "Hi there"
Ryker: "Hi!"
Gwyn: "Hi, wanna play?"
Check-out Girl (laughing): "No, I can't play right now"

Each of these conversations was so unexpected and funny to me because she said words or concepts that I'd never heard her say before.  "Ketchup" and "paint" are definitely new words, and we've never even talked about painting at school.  She has been saying "Okay" and "Yes" a lot over last two weeks to answer questions and she really hadn't been doing that much before.  And asking a stranger a question like "Wanna play?" is so surprising.  I'm looking forward to reporting all of this to her speech therapist tomorrow who hasn't seen Gwyn in 3 weeks.