Sunday, July 26, 2009

July 26, 2009: New House & Kid Updates


I haven't written here since the beginning of June and here is it July already! The biggest change for our family is that we moved into our new house about a month ago. This went without a hitch partially thanks to the help of some of our friends! The new house is almost twice the size of the old house, so all our stuff fit in perfectly with room to spare. There are still boxes in the garage, but I am not thinking about them now. (If I can't see it, it doesn't exist, right?). The funny thing about moving (and I have moved OFTEN), is that when I move in about 2/3 rds of my stuff, I feel pretty much that I have everything I need and I wonder what I need the other 1/3rd for. (That is the stuff still sitting in the garage). At the same time, here we have this fabulous newish house, and I must say, our couch looks quite dated. But we are going to wait until both kids are out of the climbing phase until we get a new couch.

The other night, we hung pictures. That made me feel more at home.
Talking about the kids, they are doing well. Annelies is sitting, she has to hold on to something when she does, though, but she really wants to sit and stand. When I am on the floor with her, and help her sit up, she pops right up onto her feet. Our PT is OK with her doing that, she is actually quite impressed. I am no longer comparing Annelies's progress to what Marco did. I actually kind of forgot what Marco did at her age, and that is better because I will drive myself nuts.
Marco has a weekly speech therapy session, because he has a speech delay. This sounds incredibly serious, but if Marco was never in day care I would not have really been too bothered by it. The daycare urged us to get him some early intervention, and since we already deal with them for Annelies, it was easy to have Marco evaluated. The speech therapist is fabulous. This guy is obviously in his right calling. Have you ever noticed how delightful it is to see someone practice his or her profession when they are obviously in the right one? Well, this guy certainly is, and he has a wonderful report with Marco. I enjoy going there, because Marco makes such progress.
About a month ago, Aaron and I were asked to come to his daycare to talk with the 'powers that be' there and his current teacher. They were concerned because of Marco's speech delay, and the fact that when they asked him to stop doing something (like opening the door) he would hit. Now, he does not hit hard, he would just bring both arms up and then down out of frustration. So, we went to talk to them, and they urged us to get him a psych evaluation. They want to make sure 'nothing else is wrong with him' or something like that, and they seem to think that maybe Marco will get some kind of assitant who can come to the classroom and help them interact with Marco, give pointers and such. (In order to get that, though, you have to have a diagnosis on the Autism spectum, I was told). To satisfy them we called our EI person and she scheduled a psych eval for Marco. Personally, I am more of the school of letting kids develop at their own speed, as long as there is not something seriously wrong. But whatever, it seems like here (in the US), if your kid is not within certain lines of development, we need to do all kinds of things to 'help' them. His speech therapist felt that this is a bit over the top, because he is making good progress (he does not think Marco has Autism). But he said that doing the test would put my mind at ease (I have shared my concerns with him several times, and he has pointed out several times when Marco shows empathy and awareness of others and others' actions and how his actions affect others around him). Since we already have the appointment, and it is hard to get these types of appointments, we will go ahead with it so as not to irritate anyone.
So the other day I came to the school and pointed out that I had not received any additional notices about Marco being aggressive, and asked if it was less. The teacher said: "Yes, it is less, but he still does repetitive behaviors". Whatever that means. So I relayed that to Eric (speech guy) and he rolled his eyes and told me that Marco is 2 1/2, and it is absolutely NORMAL for him to do repetitive behaviors, because that is the way he learns (it is not like he bangs his head on the floor or the wall or anything, or sits in a corner for an hour straight and plays with the same thing over and over). Eric is going to talk to the school one of these days, he told me. (He is switching his schedule around so he will have Friday's free for education and meetings and stuff like he will be able to talk to them on a Friday.)
Next week is the Annual Down Syndrome Convention, happening in Sacramento. We are going on Saturday and Sunday, and it will be interesting. Aside from my Daughter, I have not met anyone with Ds yet, so I may get overwhelmed (I am afraid of getting overwhelmed). But maybe it will be OK.


  1. First of all, congrats on the house! I STILL don't have stuff on the walls because I want to paint first! Second, you will LOVE the conference! Everyone tends to be very friendly and helpful. Not to mention how much you will LOVE meeting all the great kids and adults with Down syndrome! If you don't love every moment, you can throw pie in my face! The Traveling Afghan will be there as well!!

  2. Marco and Annelies are very fortunate to have you and Eric as parents. Your health and inner and well being is the utmost importance for you and the family. You are obviously are aware of it.

    We wish you and Eric well,
    Tony and Donna Avalos