Ah yes as I promised I should tell you about Skyler's SLP appointment. It was his second appointment, and he had physio at the same time. Physio wants us to encourage him walking over, and on top of things because of his depth perception problems. He needs to be comfortable with walking on uneven terrain and other things like that. So in addition to climbing up and down the stairs in the apartment block each day we're going to try to have him walking over pillows and that kind of thing. Our OT (from the CNIB) said she is going to look into getting us a disabled parking pass so he can have more independence when we're out and about. Right now we just carry him because it's too far to let him walk the whole way to the doors when he's so tiny and there are so many cars driving around. Plus he goes quite slowly. And curbs are an issue. We may get him a cane in a few years, when he's ready for it. Just to help with things like curbs and uneven terrian. He's pretty good about finding his way around, but a pot hole would probably send him flying to his butt.
Anyway on to SLP. I pointed out a bunch of things and the SLP and I talked. His receptive language is fantastic. He knows what you're saying, he will point to things, repeat words and sentences, follow instructions etc. The only thing is he tucks his bottom lip in all the time. When he attempts to say something he uses the back of the throat sounds which are the hardest ones for kids to learn, and he never uses the lip sounds which are the easiest (m, p, b). So we have to try to get him to use that bottom lip and stop tucking it under his teeth. Every time we say something to him with one of those sounds we're supposed to pat our lips to show him how we're making the sound. And we have to try to put something on his lip to help him stop sucking on it. She suggested some kind of chapstick that he might not like the taste of. Everyone I've asked has recommended Car.mex. So C got some last night.
He did keep his lip out a bit more with the chapstick on, but still won't touch his lips together to make the sounds. When he says "baby" it comes out as "daydee". "Happy" is "Ha-ee" etc. Sometimes I know exactly what he is saying, but other times I get confused because so many words sounds the same with him using the D and K sounds to replace so many other letters. In addition to showing him how to make the sounds, we're supposed to rub or tap his bottom lip to draw his attention to it. So far when I do that he seems to like to suck it in more.. The SLP said she's never actually seen a little guy who sucks in his bottom lip. Most kids do the pouty lip and stick out the bottom one, but not suck it in. I guess my kid just has to be different :)
And we also have to make sound bags. So for each letter he doesn't say I have to put together a bag of items, toys, pictures etc of things that start with that letter so that we can work on having him label those items and try to get him to say those letters. I'm thinking the letter B will have things like a picture of a baby, a book, a ball, a bottle, a toy bee, etc. Then I have M, and P to do as well. I know I need to get started on that, but I have been pretty busy with everything else. The baby is due at any moment, so I am doing my best to get all that in order.
Yesterday I had my mom over to show her where everything was for when I go into labour and she comes to watch Skyler. I've packed my hospital bag, and arranged for a tour of the hospital's maternity ward. I made a checklist of things to do and make sure to have before we go, etc. Last night I had my first cramp/contraction thing going on while we were walking around the department store. It got so bad we had to go because I could hardly move. This morning when I woke up my baby belly looks so much smaller. Even though I am still huge. I can feel that he has definitely dropped into position so I don't know how much longer I have until we're welcoming him into the world.
Oh and to the second part of what I said I'd talk about. Some of you might know I have anxiety disorder. It's especially bad in hospitals, doctors offices etc. Or at least it used to be. Now a days I am much much more comfortable going in for routine check ups. I no longer have doctors telling me that my blood pressure or heart rate are off the charts. I think the people make a difference. I love my nurse practitioner and my OB, they make me feel comfortable. But the thing I still have a lot of trouble with is calling people I don't know.. I've always had panic attacks answering the phone or calling someone when I don't know them. Like banking, or services or pretty much anyone who isn't my family. I used to make C do it for me.
On Thursday and Friday I decided to work up my courage and just do it. I called about six or seven different companies/people for things that normally I would have had enormous panic attacks about. I managed to call one of my credit card providers and tell them to send me a cheque since my account was accidentally over paid. I closed the account too, we're paying down all our debt and closing the accounts because we want a house someday. I called the hospital to book a tour, I called the community centre to ask about his preschool, I called the lady who runs the preschool, I even called my Finances department for my work and asked them to keep my benefits while I'm on leave. And I didn't have a singe panic attack!
I know it sounds ridiculous for some people, but for me it was a huge deal being able to do that. I've been working on a stress and meditation workbook lately and I think it's helped me a lot. I've been meditating more than usual and working out 20 minutes every night on the bike. I think it's helping me keep my head clear, and keep the unnecessary anxiety out of my life. It felt really good knowing I was able to pick up the phone like a grown up and talk to people I normally would be afraid to talk to.
Anyway I've gone on long enough, now I'm off to finish icing the heart shaped cookies Skyler and C and I made yesterday.