Thursday, June 30, 2011

June 30, 2011 - Momentous Occasion!!

Conner pooped on the potty tonight...on purpose! And he has been dry for 3 days straight. Next step is him telling us he has to go. We are so proud of him. Tomorrow marks 1 week in underwear during the day. Not sure how/when we will tackle night time, but I am just so happy we have made it this far. Potty training any child is not easy but potty training a child with special needs is so much harder than I ever thought it could be. This week has been exhausting.

This is Conner in his underpants (he is enjoying sitting around without pants on these days, much easier to go that way!)...checking out his sister's play gym. It has a rocket ship on it which happens to be an obsession of it's right up his alley! Too bad, it's a little small for him!

June 27, 2011 -Summer

Well here we are at the end of June already. Today was Conner's first day of camp. He is going to a new place and it is bittersweet for us. I am very happy with the camp (nervous, but happy). They have a great preschool camp and on top of it just being a great place, Conner is a lucky participant in an inclusion program. He is in a regular "bunk" of kids, but he has a special counselor looking out for him. She will help him with the pool, the potty (yes, I said potty...more on that in a minute) and anything else he might need help with. We have met his counselor a few times already, and although she seemed a bit nervous at first, I think she will be great. Conner knows that "Michelle" is his "own counselor" and that Miss Shellie is his other counselor (the main teacher). We have been talking about camp for a while so he has been excited about it. The hard part is that he is with all new kids. He doesn't know any of them. Conner is pretty easy going and he likes most kids, but it is hard for other kids to understand him sometimes. I just hope that kids are nice and play with him and that he has fun. He is going there 3 days a week and then the other two days are spent at speech preschool and private therapy. Conner is a busy boy (which means Brennan is a busy girl!!).

Anyway, the big news is that we are really working hard on potty training. Yes, I know that Conner is almost 4, but he is developmentally delayed, has a speech disorder and has low tone. This is not a great combination for potty training. I feel like we have been introducing the idea to Conner for almost 2 years. This past week/weekend, we had a few days with not much going on so we really just got in to it and this time, we are not looking back. Conner has been in underpants since Friday (still a diaper at night). He has been doing great and having very few accidents if we take him to the bathroom on a regular schedule. He is not yet asking to go or telling us when he has to go, but we are hoping he will catch on and will start "getting it" very soon. In the meantime, we are sending him to camp with several changes of clothes and hoping they continue to work with him. This has been a HUGE step forward for all of us and we are SO proud of Conner and how hard he is trying. This is not an easy thing for him at all but he is trying.

He has had a rough month health-wise and just when he finally seems to be on the mend, he starts coughing again. This last month I have worried about Conner's lungs more than I have since he was an infant. We have used the pulse ox more in the last few weeks than in the last 2 years combined. Conner ended up on steroids after a few worrisome days and ended up at the ER (he was fine) once for low oxygen saturation.

We saw the physiatrist... basically, the doctor that finds something wrong EVERY time we go there. Last time, he wanted Conner to have spine and hip x-rays and see an orthopedic doctor. This time, (we go every 6 months), he wants us to see a pediatric plastic surgeon to look at the big scar on Conner's calf to make sure it isn't causing any trouble for him as he grows. It's always something. I think it's part of him, has been since he was a day old, so we are used to it, but the doctor just wants it checked out.

Otherwise, Conner has been doing fantastic. He absolutely LOVES being a big brother and has been talking to his sister all the time. He tells her "Brennan, you're my best friend", "I love my sister", etc. etc. It is so cute, it could melt my heart. I'm so relieved at how he has transitioned to being a big brother. I can't wait to see them play together as Brennan gets older. I'm hoping he'll continue to love her as much as he does now (and share his toys!). His speech has come even farther and he is talking up a storm. He is so creative and imaginative that sometimes I have no idea what he is talking about. He has such a long way to go in some areas, but in other areas he is doing so great.

Brennan is doing great too. She had her 4 month check up today (she's not 4 months for another week though). She had 2 shots and is a little cranky since then (I would be too!). She is getting HUGE...75%ile for weight and height and 50th% for head circumference. The doctor said we could start trying solids anytime we think she is ready. We will probably wait until at least 4 months. She said all the guidelines for feeding solids have changed so it's totally different than when we were feeding Conner solids. She doesn't even want us to start with rice (we didn't ever give Conner rice either because of constipation) because it is high in carbs and oatmeal has more fiber and is better. She said that the new studies are showing that American kids are more obese and have more allergies so they are trying to change how babies are fed to try to address that. Thankfully Conner is a great eater so I can only hope Brennan likes fruits and vegetables as much as he does! Of course, I am worried about a thousand things, but she assured me that Brennan looks great. I was worried about torticollis but she said everything looks symmetrical and she has good range of motion in her neck. She gave me some pointers to help keep her looking to both sides, most of which I try to do anyway and remember doing with Conner but it's good to get a reminder.

Brennan isn't on a good schedule yet. It's hard because she is with me all the time but we hope as Conner gets in to camp, we get some appointments out of the way, that we can be home more and get on a better schedule. She definitely eats on a schedule, but doesn't sleep great during the day. She is sleeping really well most nights so we are doing good.

We had our first road trip as a family of four. We went to Cleveland to visit the Stein's. Conner had a blast with Lindsay and Zachary and is still talking about them. He didn't sleep well at all though so I'm a little nervous about the few other trips we have planned in the next few months.

I had a bunch of photos uploaded but can't find them at the maybe in the next day or two they''ll be posted.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Summer Infant Seat Giveaway

#Win a SuperSeat from @summerinfant  & @_themaven ends 6/20

Friday, June 3, 2011

June 2, 2011 - A New Bike, A Cage and more

Had to quickly post about today before I hit the hay. Conner's schedule is quite busy these days, but he does well with a structured busy day. It seems to work for him. Today started at 9. He did a make up day at speech preschool (he will start going every T/Th in a few weeks). David took him while I took B to a doctor appointment (more on that in a minute). Anyway, Conner went to preschool and as always, had a great day. The teacher told David (and told me the same on Tuesday) that Conner is a pleasure to have in class and she loves having him. Always makes parents feel good to hear stuff like that. Oh and on Tuesday, the little girl in the class told her mom that she wanted Conner over for a playdate.

So David drove Conner from there to OT and Speech at another place. I met them there with the baby so David could go back to work. Anyway, Conner had a great day there...that was from 1-2:30. Then we got back in the car and drove to PT at yet another place. I haven't gone back to watch his session in a while because it has become very distracting for Conner. Today, Conner kept saying he was hungry so I ran to the little cafe thing and bought him some Bugles (nutritious, I know!) and walked back to give them to him.  I saw a boy (who was Conner...but I was so shocked!) riding his bike with training wheels down the hall. I couldn't believe it. David had brought the bike up there because we wanted to work on riding it...Conner was getting way too big for the tricycle so we bought him a Cars bike. Anyway, he did a great job riding his new bike. It still has special pedals on it that basically velcro C's feet to the pedals, but maybe in a few weeks, we will try to take them off and see what Conner does.

After that, Conner's PT tried him out in their new "cage". It has a fancier name...something like Universal something or other, but it looks like a cage. Conner called it a locker. Anyway, she got him all hooked up and once he got comfortable, he was jumping all over the place. I don't know much about it, but it was cool, and I was so proud of him. He is getting better every day with his jumping and I think this new activity is going to be fun for him. He was whipped by the end of the session.

So Conner had a great day as far as I'm concerned. He continues to make progress in every area and we are so happy with how well he is doing.

Brennan had to go to the dermatologist today. She has a Nevis Simplex (stork bite) on her nose/forehead. It is so faint that we don't even really notice it, but the pediatrician wanted us to go have it checked just because of its location. She also has a hemangioma on her shoulder. We weren't concerned about either of them, but the dermatologist wanted to try to reduce the one on the shoulder (he said the one on her face should fade and disappear). He gave me three options, but seemed to lean toward we went ahead and started to freeze the hemangioma. It only took about 15 seconds measured 16 cm by 11 cm, so hopefully when we go back in 4 weeks, it won't have grown as much. I was really hesitant to do it at all because I didn't want her to have any unnecessary pain but the doctor really wanted us to try it now instead of waiting. The other option was trying a topical drug but when I asked about safety, he couldn't really reassure me enough. Hopefully after this is done with, we won't have to go back (although he was a nice doctor and I will consider taking Conner next time we need a dermo for him).

Other than this, Brennan is doing really well. She is cute as a button and very well dressed! I have tons of cute hair clips for her already! She doesn't really love tummy time but the last few days she has had much less spit up so maybe tummy time will get better. She has rolled a few times from her stomach to back, but I don't think it was very purposeful yet. She still loves sitting and standing and whenever we lay her on her back, she tries to lift her head.

Nothing much else going on...this weekend, more hippotherapy fun!