Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Words of Gold

Language has been Wade's biggest hurdle in this world.  He easily reads other people's words and observes people and listens to conversations with almost the close attention to detail that a deaf person might exhibit.  But piecing together words to make sentences of his own has been difficult and evasive.

That's why my listening pleasure knows no bounds when I hear him expressing original thoughts that can actually be understood.

"I make house of sticks for Eeyore!"

"I like snuggle with Mommy." 

"Randall, I want my toast.  At 15 o'clock!"

"Toe hurts.  Need rubber band!"

Lately he's been picking up language and expressions with much greater ease.  At the dentist's office this fall, he danced in front of a funny mirror with another little boy who kept exclaiming, "Oh my gosh!"  Wade remembered to use that expression liberally the rest of the day and then appeared to have forgotten it.  Until last night when Nevin gave him a piggy back ride to bed.  And Wade said suddenly and very clearly, "Oh my gosh!"

Among his favorite books to read are my large collection of old readers.  Today he must have been taking notes on the formal greetings of long-ago families during his early morning reading.

He greeted us at 6:45.  "Good morning, Mother!  Good morning, Father!"

He said good-by to the speech therapist.  "Good-bye, Sara Brown!"

And then I took my polite little boy to the library.  We checked out our books and the librarian told him good-bye.   He answered cheerfully, "Good-bye, Porky Bob!"

And I'm prouder than the parent of an honor student at how hard we've worked to get the language to be this disrespectful.

Monday, January 21, 2013

The Music Lives On

Today we said good-bye to a friend.

He came for three years with songs and laughter and dancing, and Wade followed him like the Pied Piper of music therapy.

His teaching was a mixture of rhythm and glissandi, listening and counting, beach balls and swirling scarves,  piano and castanets.

And for everything there was a song.

But now he's gone and we don't have a song for that.

And Wade doesn't understand the meaning of no David.

"David sick?" he says.  "David in hospital?"

And I don't know what to say.

So we sit together and sing the "Good-bye Song" as we did so many times at the end of a session.
"Good-bye, David, good-bye.  
Good-bye is what we say.  
Good-bye, David, good-bye.  
We'll see you again another day."

But somehow it seems all sad and wrong.

And then suddenly I know why.

It's the wrong song.  David would have known that.  Because his music isn't ending; it's only beginning.  Today he is singing new songs more beautiful and golden than any he sang on earth.

And so we sing again, the right song this time, to David who lives today as he never did before.
"Hello, hello to David; 
Hello, hello to David; 
We'll sing and laugh and move and play; 
It is music time today, 
Hello, hello to David, hello."

Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live.  John 11:25

Friday, January 04, 2013

Tootsie Roll Talking and Other Good Things

Wade's speech therapist suggested having him chew part of a Tootsie Roll before doing oral reading in order to wake up his sleeping muscles and encourage clearer enunciation.  Good idea! Wade likes that therapy so much that he sneaked into the pantry and ate nine Tootsie Rolls before breakfast one morning.  But he forgot to throw away the wrappers.  Busted!!

Even better than Tootsie Rolls are sausages, which he thinks should be part of every breakfast.

Doing these magnetic Melissa & Doug pattern blocks has been a bit difficult for Wade's fine motor skills.  But over Christmas vacation we tried again and voila!

He did the robot man all by himself...

...and the swimming birds!

Folding the cleaning rags and dishtowels is another good OT project. 

Woodside Kitchen provides plenty of rags to fold...

...and sauces to eat (along with the Tootsie Rolls and sausage).

And painting is a delight too.

What will it be?

Whatever it is, using one brush at a time is too slow.

We like ambidextrous art...

...almost as much as Christopher's edible art. 


I think this was supposed to say "Ha Pe Nu Year".  Somehow the word Mom appeared mixed in with all the rest.  One of life's Ha Pe little surprises.