Saturday, August 19, 2006

Owen, Rainbows and Tantrums

I know, I know! I've been terrible at keeping up with posting. I suppose I'm treating life as if I was on a summer holiday. Which is partly true. We have been really busy just doing all of the stuff that we know will not get done once the kids are all going to school/programs and Jonathan is working. Can you believe we are just a couple weeks away until school starts!!??!

We wanted to send out a thank you to everyone who has sent us such nice housewarming cards. It wasn't necessary, but it definitely has filled our home with reminders that we are not out here all alone. We have really been doing well and Jonathan and I just said to each other this morning, that we can't really say that we've gotten homesick yet. Sure, we miss friends and family, but so far we have really felt that this is home. It's a strange feeling, but a good one. I already feel like a proud Calgarian. We love our mountains, we love our home and we love our community. It will be nice to finally meet some new people, but it will come. Jake has already made a friend who lives a few streets over. We need to schedule a playdate soon.

Owen is doing wonderfully. Diane has been an amazing addition to our family and we will be sooooo sorry to see her go home on Sept 1st. She works with Owen and Will for one hour and a half each, every morning. They do various exercises in the 'therapy room'. More than anything, it has provided the boys with the routine of attending to a task, compliance, focusing, etc. For the first couple of days, Owen screamed blue murder for most of the session, but once he realized that he was stuck, he got used to it.

Owen at the playground with his friend, Owen

This is Owen watching a video called Signing Time/The Rainbow Song. Watch how he has learned to sign the words "warm, frog, sunset and ocean". He won't sign them on command, but it's a start!!! Thanks to Diane's purchase of the video, the whole family has memorized the song after hearing it at least 2000 times in the past week.

For anyone who has been to our home, you know that Owen has a unique routine of drinking his bottle. Immediately following his meal, he requests his milk (by doing a simple sign of putting his hand to his mouth), then he runs off to his favourite chair or spot on the floor and with feet up in the air, he guzzles it down. Normally he would just chuck the bottle aside when he was finished, but now he has learned the routine of bringing his bottle to the table and setting it upright (yaay!). In other routines around the house, Owen is making us proud. When he comes in from outside, he immediately sits down and takes off his own shoes, takes off his jacket or hat and hangs them up. He's sitting at every meal and anticipates mealtimes. It's kind of funny - when we moved here and set up our kitchen table, we set up Owen and Will's chairs so that they could face the windows and/or rec room where we would sometime have one of their shows playing (I thought it might encourage them to sit at the table longer if they were preoccupied). Within one day, both Owen and Will had moved their seats to exactly the same position they were in, in our old kitchen back home. Will sits at the head with Owen to his right. It just goes to show how much they love their routine.

Some other good stuff is that Owen really seems to love his new bedroom. He wakes up and just lounges around in his bed for a bit before coming out to sit at the kitchen table, waiting for his english muffin with peanut butter. He's been eating pepperoni on his pizza and he is eating other types of pizza - not just Pizza Pizza! Owen has been really interacting well with Jake and it's so nice to see. On the downside, Owen's tantrums are not only becoming more frequent, but they are a lot more volatile. He lies down on the floor and kicks his feet with all his might. For a little guy, he's got a lot of force behind those legs and it hurts! We keep going through phases of sleepless nights where he wakes up somewhere between 11 and 1am and he just SCREAMS. He doesn't know what he wants, he's just plain mad. He wants us there to hold him, but he kicks and pushes us away, then pulls us back in to be held.. This can go on for hours and it is absolutely exhausting. It's difficult to decide if we should let him cry it out on his own or not, because that's definitely something that often does the trick. But the risk is that by the end of the tantrum, the whole house is wide awake. It's a never-ending battle.

We are pretty excited for life to settle into a routine in September and I am anxious to see what new things Owen will learn with his new therapists and at Nursery School. I have every confidence that we have chosen the right service providers for him and I can't wait to see how he progresses.

1 comment:

u of t said...

Great Job on this page (s).. I am so glad to see everything working out for you guys. The 3 boys - 4 boys are doing great. Do you have a pic of Jon in his beaver outfit, the summer one? I think it's great, I loved taking the boys to beavers.

I loved your story of your Pops Stacey, I always enjoyed my visits with him. Although I didn't know him as well as I would like to have you hit on what I did know about him. He was a fine Gentleman..


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