I just logged on and realize it has been over a month since I have posted here. Wondering if anyone ever looks anymore??? For anyone that is still checking, here is an update on Jack and the rest of the family...
We have been very busy. I guess there is no need to explain that! We did sneak a short trip to Colorado in - kids in tow. Chris and I had some work to attend to and we had a new niece to meet! Little Trinity is adorable and Jack got to meet his cousins. For anyone reading this wondering why we didn't see them while we were there, I am sorry we didn't make it to visit everyone as it was a very quick trip! On the way home, I was solo on the plane with the kids. They did great! Darby and Carter sat next to a man across the aisle and were just telling him how Jaden would just bust a gut if we hit turbulence and soon after that it got quite bumpy. Sure enough, as predicted, she launched into a MAJOR belly laugh that had the back half the plane laughing hysterically! She got Jack going and there was no stopping them until we landed. It was indeed funny.
This past weekend we had to make an unexpected trip to LA to say goodbye to Chris' grandmother. She passed away rather suddenly last weekend. Always sad to say goodbye, but we celebrated her life and she leaves behind her spirit in many grandchildren and great-grandchildren. May she rest in peace with her dear husband, "Lefty" and her many close friends.
Jaden and I had an interesting talk this weekend. She laid in bed with me the morning after the memorial (before the funeral) and was telling me that great-grandma was in the blue box and that she couldn't come out. She understood that it was great-grandma's wish that the blue box be closed, so we couldn't open it. She wanted to know where they were taking grandma. After a long discussion about heaven, God and dying, she translated it to three-year-old speak and said, "So, God called her name and it was her turn to go to heaven?" Sounds like circle time in pre-school, huh? Pretty simple. When it is your turn, God calls your name and you do as you are told. She seems to get it a little better than the rest of us sometimes.
So we are recovering from the laundry heap now and getting everyone adjusted to sleeping back in their own beds. Jack seems to always have a hard time coming back home. He cries when put to bed until Jaden is in bed across from him. Then he drifts off on his own.
Jaden and Jack are in water torture, um - I mean, swimming lessons now. We paid for Jack to be carried around a pool while he screamed for 3 sessions before he really got anything out of it. He still is not happy about the situation, but will tolerate it. It seems that his chief complaint is that he has to take his BAHA off. He protests quite a bit about that and says, ”BAHA ON!!!” It is very important to us that the kids be water safe, but I am wondering if we tried this too soon with him. He really enjoys the water with us, so maybe he will get over it??? Here are Jaden and Jack trying out their goggles...
Other than that, Jack is really making AMAZING progress. He is literally speaking in sentences! His speech therapist said he wouldn’t do that until he had at least 50 words in his vocabulary, so I started making a list. He is waaayyy over 50 words now. He is piecing together various words on his own initiative to communicate and it is really fun to see him connect with language! A few weeks ago, I was cutting up his dinner and he saw that I was about to mix the veggies in with everything so he would eat them too and he screeched, “MY WANT HERE!!!” while pointing to his tray. He wanted me to put it over before I mixed it all up. Too funny. He says things like “I want to try” and “I want some more” and “I want up” - very impressive, we think! A big accomplishment is that he can (and will) say, “I’m sorry,” Very cute too, is when you sneeze, he will say, “Bless you!” His enunciation is not perfect, but it is really coming along and his consonants are very present at the beginning of all his words. They are beginning to appear at the end of the words too. He says “up” with the “p” on the end now and can say “ow” with a “w” on the end. So, he is just making phenomenal progress.
When I first met with the hearing and language specialists, they said they would measure Jack’s speech by his “hearing age.” By this, they mean that now they would expect his speech to be comparable to a 2 ½ month old as he has had his hearing aid for 2 ½ months. By the end of one year, they expect him to speak a handful of words. Needless to say, they are all blown away by little Jack. And, frankly, so am I. Here is this very brave little boy, taken away from everything he ever knew to live with these strange people in a new house in a peculiar land with all these odd rules, live with new “siblings” and forced to eat weird food (okay, maybe the food didn’t bother him too much). Now here he is, with what started out to be a very scary device making all this noise in his head – speaking full sentences to me two months later – in English no less! He is a very sweet little boy and, though I know I have said this a million times – we are blessed beyond belief.