I was washing dishes and she couldn't stop staring at the water. I finally put her on the counter. She couldn't stop eyeing the water still and knew she had to touch it.
Her feet came in first then...
her WHOLE body!
Haha, it was so funny to watch! She cannot resist water. She's a magnet to it and just has to be in it.
This is probably one of the happiest and proudest moments I've had with Elise! It's so hard to explain how much these moments mean to me. They are precious. After Elise did the whole process by herself I called my mom because I was so excited.
At the beginning of March, Ez and I had a special fast for Elise. We fasted that she would make improvements and learn quicker.
I can testify that without a doubt that our sincere, heartfelt prayers and fast have been answered.
Looking back it started on March 3rd, the day after we fasted. Since that day I feel like I can report progress after progress she has made. It's amazing. She is starting to form a point, she goes on this slide all the time now, and she is making more vocalizations and all the other things I've posted.
I am humbled and grateful for the Lord's kindness and mercy. I also feel like I can "second" what Elder Richard G. Scott has said about learning from the Spirit. By me being aware and writing on this blog, I am able to see our prayers being answered right in front of my eyes. If I hadn't done that I may have missed seeing God's hand in it.
“Write down in a secure place the important things you learn from the Spirit. You will find that as you write down precious impressions, often more will come. Also, the knowledge you gain will be available throughout your life. Always, day or night, wherever you are, whatever you are doing, seek to recognize and respond to the direction of the Spirit.” -Elder Richard G. Scott
This room is why I feel our new home is such a tender mercy for us! There is no way we could have done this in our other home. It is a blessing for sure.
Elise and her therapist are able to hang out in here during therapy. The rest of the time it's her little piece of heaven. She loves it. The other kids love it as well. It's one of the only places where all of them can play together. I don't want Elise excluded from things so what greater thing than to bring it INTO our home and create the environment for her and so others are drawn to her. It's been great and I couldn't be happier.
This morning I was folding Cal's clothes that were too small and putting them in the box. I was almost done. Just then Elise came over and started pulling out the clothes and throwing them all around the room. What did I do?
I didn't step in and put the clothes back. I didn't move her away and tell her no. I didn't get mad at her for undoing all the folding I had just done.
I couldn't. Like I've said so much, if I can get her to do ANYTHING, I will let her.
I just sat and watched her. The whole time I kept thinking, "What is wrong with me?" It was so weird because normally I wouldn't have allowed that but she was doing SOMETHING so I had to let her do it.
No it wasn't my typical response but a lot of things around here aren't typical.
I love that a combination of Elise getting braver and her motor planning improving is allowing her to explore and try things.
After we got home from the park tonight I was getting Elise's toothpaste on her toothbrush. I looked over and saw her trying to get in the bathtub. She loves, loves water and I think even though there wasn't any water it was still a positive place for her.
I stood there and just watched her. She is getting more and more entertaining to watch these days. It took her probably 5 minutes of straddling the tub, trying to lift her other leg up, failing, trying again, taking the other leg out of the tub, and trying again. This process went on and on. It was so funny watching her face. Her mouth is open a lot when she's trying something and she tries so hard not to touch anything.
Finally she did it. She was in the bathtub; clothes, jacket, shoes, and all. Then she picked up the toy animals and began throwing them. How could I stop her? She was "playing." She was in there for about 10 minutes, which is incredible that it kept her attention for that long. After so long in the bathtub she climbed out then back in then back out then in.
It's so good to see her branch out and try something.
I remember one of the questions that I have heard over and over throughout all of Elise's different assessments. That question, relating to her sensory integration dysfunction, is "does your child seek opportunities to feel vibrations?" I've always answered no to that question but look where I found this little girl today?
Elise discovered the dryer's vibrations and was loving it! I think the combination of the noise and vibration was her way of getting the tactile and auditory stimulation she was seeking.
I believe miracles still happen though they may not be as noticeable as those we read about in the scriptures or magazines. I've learned in order to recognize something you have to be looking for it.
The 2nd counselor in our Bishopric bore his testimony yesterday on miracles. It was a sensitive subject for him I could tell but I felt the Spirit bear witness to me that yes miracles do happen and are all around.
After we came home from church the kids watched a church video. When I looked up, Christ was performing different miracles. Both of these instances reminded me of Elder Holland's Oct 2014 conference talk. In it he said, "Believe in miracles."
We had a miracle happen today.
Throughout Elise's therapy session and at dinner tonight she was able to discriminate the different photos shown on the ipad and touch the one picture she wanted. I could see her eyes look at each of the pictures and her hand hit the one picture she wanted then it would speak for her. I didn't have to prompt or do hand-over-hand, she just did it by herself over and over again.
Some may say "so what?!" For me it was a miracle. I can't even begin to think of how long we have worked on this. Kids with autism have a very difficult time understanding that a picture of a horse is the same thing as a toy horse or real horse. For her to understand that a picture of a toy means the actual toy is such a big step. It opens up so many doors for us now.
Granted this is just a beginning of her understanding but it will lead to her being able to tell us so much more on the ipad and touching pictures in books when we ask, "Where's the cat? or Touch the ball."
It was so wonderful because she was actually telling us what she wanted. She was communicating with us and yes I believe that is a miracle!
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!