Elise has learned a very valuable form of communication: bringing us things she really wants. When she was first learning this, whatever she presented us with, we'd reward her right away to help her learn the concept. Now that she has learned cause and effect we can when needed say, "No not right now" and she understands. Sometimes she'll throw a pretty good tantrum and other times her bottom lip will turn out, her eyes fill with tears and a little cry will come out. I actually am glad to see her start doing this because it shows she understands what I'm saying. These are things she typically brings us that she wants:
my phone which means she wants to watch a show
a bag of marshmallows or a wrapper of some food she's found that she really wants to eat
her music walker toy which is not at all small (I find her dragging this all around the house until she finds someone to turn it on for her)
There are times when I'll be in another room and I'll see Elise carrying with one hand a jar of applesauce. Sometimes I'll get lucky and catch her in time before she kind of tosses it in my direction and other times I'm not so lucky and applesauce spills all over the carpet.
The other day I was getting ready in my bathroom when Elise came running in with her swimsuit in her hand. She sort of shoved it at me for me to take. I looked at her and said, "Elise do you want to go swimming?!" Immediately her head shot in my direction and her eyes very intently looked in mine and a big smile came across her face. It was one of those moments that I'll never forget. She understood me. She totally understood me!
Elise began jumping and doing her repetitive hand movements very excitedly and squealing. She ran into my closet and I found her looking up. I went in there and followed her gaze to our swim towels. I realized she knew that swimming meant getting our towels that were in my closet. I got them down and said, "Okay let's go swimming!" She was all smiles. She loves to go swimming; it's her favorite thing. I love taking her just to see how happy and full of life she is there.
I'm realizing just how smart she is and that she understands a lot more than I give her credit for. Since that day to tell me she wants to go swimming she'll find and hand me her swim diaper, swim towel, life jacket or even sometimes she'll try to drag the sprinkler hose into the house! That's one that always makes me laugh. I've heard it many times but it's really struck me lately to "Always assume competence."
I LOVE being a mom to my 5 kids; one with special needs. There is no greater joy than being a parent! I love each one individually but this blog will mostly focus on our daughter with special needs and our journey with her. Thanks for reading!