One family's adventures in open adoption, Asperger's, and parenting one amazing little girl!
Tuesday, March 04, 2008
Hannah Do It!
Hannah is officially Miss Independent. I hear the words, "Hannah Do It!" dozens of times each day and while I know that she must practice new skills and I fully appreciate that I will like it once she can dress herself, brush her teeth, etc, those words are getting old VERY quickly. The problem is not that she wants to do things herself, but the fact that she refuses any suggestion that she might need even a shred of help. She's so close to being able to dress herself and if she would just let us help her a tiny bit she would be able to do it, but the merest of suggestion that she might like some help is enough to send her into a wild tantrum. However, if she isn't helped then she gets more and more frustrated the longer she tries and cannot do it on her own and then she still has a tantrum. It's a Catch 22. One day last week it took us 45 minutes to get dressed! I had to constantly stop myself and take a deep breath and pray for God to grant me patience throughout that whole ordeal. I thought the dogs were going to explode from waiting so long to get out of their crates and both Hannah and I were near tears by the time it was all said and done and we were eating breakfast. A funny story about Hannah and dressing herself happened the other day while she was insisting that she put her coat on herself. I was getting so frustrated because we really needed to go that I just had to walk away to the other room for a second. Then all of a sudden I hear, "I did it!" and Hannah comes stumbling into the living room with her coat on facing the wrong way (zipper to the back) and the hood up over her face! She was so proud of herself. :) It was one of the funniest things I have seen in awhile. It was a nice reminder that I need to stop and smell the roses every once in awhile and not try to rush her too much if I can help it.
As Hannah continues to learn new things like dressing herself, I am reminded of how far she has come and have been a bit nostalgic lately for some of her baby days. The things I think I miss the most are her mispronunciations of words when she was first learning to talk. I'm kicking myself now for not writing them all down, but here are the few that I remember that have long since passed away and then some of my current favorites that I'm sure I'll be sad to see go someday. Old Mispronunciations: bup-puff, hamel-camel, Eva-Evelyn, RoPocack-Rose Spontak, Hera-Sarah, Neeky-Uniqua (Backyardigans character), mammies-jammies/pajamas, Nona-Noah, noonal-noodle, peapot-teapot
Current Mispronunciations: nerroscerus-rhinoceros, zookie-zookeeper, welcome-Malcolm, Tifanwee-Tiffany
The other day it was really warm outside so Hannah and I went out to play. The snow was melting very quickly and so it was puddled in the street near our house. Hannah and I put on our rain boots and went out to splash in the puddles. She had SO MUCH fun and so did I. It was such a blessing to be able to experience something as simple as stomping in mud puddles for the first time with her and to see her joy. It was infectious.
Hannah has now pretty much mastered all the basic colors: red, blue, yellow, green, orange, purple, brown, black, white, and pink. She can point to something that is the right color or name the color if you say, "what color is this?" She loves to dig through her crayon tub and say, "What color I want? Um, pink" or red, or brown, etc. She's got the shapes of circle, square, heart, and triangle mastered, but she still has trouble with star, oval, and rectangle. She's still just counting to 13 consistently, but every now and then she gets farther and she loves to pull out all the other "teens" up to 20. She's getting better at her alphabet and recognizes more and more letters when she sees them as well as signing the alphabet song. She's also beginning to learn some of the sounds which is pretty cool. So far she can identify A, B, D, E G, H, M, R, S, W, and Z pretty much all the time. She can sometimes get C, L, N, T, and X. She knows the sounds for D, E, I, H, J, M, P, R, S, T, W, and Z although I wouldn't say she's mastered them yet.
We were having a really good run in the big girl bed as far as bedtime was concerned and then on Thursday she decided she wasn't going to just peacefully go to sleep anymore. So, Thursday-today (Monday) she's cried herself to sleep. Well, Saturday she didn't cry the entire time. She eventually decided to read instead and read herself to sleep. That was the first time she had actually got up to play or do anything else besides cry at bedtime since the introduction of the big girl bed. We get playing pretty much every day for naps, but it was a revelation for her I think that she could do the same thing at bedtime too! Today at nap time she did something hilarious. She cried for an hour and then decided to play. I heard her reading books and putting on her shoes and clothes. Then I heard her climb into her chair and start rocking and singing to herself. She started to sing "Jesus Loves Me" which is the song we always sing to her before bed or nap time. Then she started singing Jesus Loves Ernie, Hannah, and Addie (her friend that she was going to get to go play with AFTER her nap). Then the singing stopped and I thought she must have finally gone back to her bed and fell asleep. When I went to check on her I found her passed out in her chair with her books around her. The little stinker rocked, sang, and read herself to sleep just like we used to do! I just couldn't pass up the opportunity to take a picture of her even at the risk of waking her up with the flash and I'm so glad I did because the results are too cute.
Here's a video of her singing Jesus loves Addie and Ernie while she is supposed to be napping today. Just ignore the picture and turn your volume up full blast to hear her singing. http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=6261353705563139079&hl=en