Tag Archive | early intervention

Two Years Adjusted

LMM turned two years old (adjusted) yesterday. Her birthday is in May, but since she was due in August, we adjust for her prematurity when assessing her development. 

She’s up to 23 pounds and is pretty much on track for all of her developmental milestones. Her therapists are working on her speech one a week right now, with physical therapy being moved to twice a month. They want her to say more individual words and then we will move to two word phrases.  Physical therapy is focusing on getting her to clear the ground when she jumps, plus balance on going down steps. 
Not much else going on right now, so I’ll keep this short and sweet, just like Little Miss Minion. 🙂

More Mayhem

The last few weeks have been full of Minion Mayhem, but in a good way. Lots of changes and lots to talk about! Where to begin?
A couple weeks ago, we moved into a real house. We had been in a townhouse previously, which was nice enough but didn’t really have a yard or garage and was basically the perfect home for two people, not a family. We had been looking for new houses casually and then got an offer we couldn’t refuse. Mr Minion’s grandfather was moving into a retirement home and gave us a deal for his house. Mr GrandMinion’s house is perfect: there is a garage, which will be nice in the winter since we won’t have to scrape ice and snow off the cars, there is a big front yard and a fenced backyard that Little Miss Minion already loves. We have great neighbors (although we had this at our old house as well). It’s a better school district than what we were in before, and we are looking into some programs they offer for preschoolers. Thank you Mr Grandminion!!!!
Which brings me to my next development: we moved to a neighboring county, which means that Little Miss Minion’s early intervention team has to be changed to people in the new county. It’s looking like her speech therapist will stay the same, but her physical therapist will be someone new and we will have new coordinators. 
And on the note of speech, it’s been a word explosion over here! Objectively, she still isn’t where she “should” be, but she’s getting much closer. At the end of January, she had maybe three true words and several approximations (she would say kee instead of kitty, that sort of thing). Now, she has lots of true words and lots of approximations. Off the top of my head, she says mama, dada, milk, no, table, key, toe, elbow, foot, cat, cow, phone, ball, bubble, outside, poop, get down, light, thank you, and several more. The one word she refuses to say is “please,” but she signs it instead. She knows more words than she will say herself, because if you ask her to bring you (random object), she will grab it and bring it to you. 
Her favorite things to do include playing outside, chasing bubbles, coloring/scribbling/making modern art, and eating. She loves splashing in the bathtub and throwing her clothes into the hamper. She’s happy and cheerful 95% of the time, unless she is tired or hungry. 
She will have her two year old checkup soon, so I’ll have official measurements then, but according to my fancy digital scale, she weighs right around 21-22 pounds. She is growing out of 12 month clothes and into 18 month stuff. 
She also gives the best hugs ever. When I pick her up, she puts her arms around my whole head and squeezes as hard as she can. If I don’t pick her up, she runs at me and doesn’t slow down as she crashes into my legs, arms out to squeeze. It’s adorable. 

18 months

I’m a little late, but Little Miss Minion is 18 months old chronological! This is a big deal for a couple of reasons. First, it means we are halfway through adjusting for prematurity. We will adjust for one year per month of prematurity. Since LMM was born three months early, we will adjust for three years. The other reason is that she is able to be evaluated for speech therapy. Our early intervention explained that 18 months is the absolute earliest that they will consider speech assessments, simply because there is a wide range of normal development. Luckily, they go by chronological age for therapy purposes, so we had our first meeting with the speech therapist today. 

I have been pushing for speech therapy for a couple weeks because LMM isn’t really talking yet. She says Mama, Dada, and that’s pretty much it. She “should” have around five words by now. She uses sign language and pointing to communicate, which is really good, but she needs to vocalize as well. There are a multitude of reasons why she might not be talking yet. She could be working on another skill, she could be closer to her adjusted age in talking, or she could have hearing damage. I’ll be talking to our NICU follow up team regarding this possibility at our next appointment in the spring. LMM had meningitis in the NICU, which in itself can cause hearing damage. The drugs used to treat it can also cause hearing damage. On top of that, she has frequent ear infections, which can cause hearing damage or leave residual fluid in the ear that can obstruct sounds.

 The speech therapist mostly asked us questions about LMMs birth, complications, and what she is usually like. We played with LMM while the therapist asked us things about hydrocephalus, what sounds LMM makes, etc. After the assessment, she has to write up a report and submit it to the team. She did say that she thinks LMM will benefit from twice monthly visits from a speech therapist, and gave us some “homework” to do in the meantime. No baby talk (which we don’t do anyway), no noisy toys (so she has to provide her own noises), and lots of talking by Mr Minion and myself. We will be reading to her more, talking more, and the part of the homework that LMM already dislikes: making her work for things. Usually, she would point or sign for something and we would briefly say something like “here you go, here is your ball/banana/puffs/etc.” Now, she will have to vocalize in order to get things that she wants. She will point or sign, and we will be asking her what she wants, if she wants the ball/banana/whatever. She doesn’t get it until she makes an attempt at saying it. 

I went through her library this afternoon and pulled out some new books that will be good for this. There is a book with 100 sight words in it, another that is rhyming with sight words, and some board books. 

I should have the report by next week, so I’ll update when I know more. In the meantime, we will be talking ourselves silly!

1 Month Adjusted

Yesterday was Little Miss Minion’s one month adjusted birthday! Today, she gave us two gifts: we each got our very own real smiles from her, and she kicked herself over from her stomach to her back.

I took her surgery bandage off today. My friend M is a nurse and said the tape would come off with baby oil. I could have sworn we had some, but we don’t, so I used sesame body oil instead. It took about 10 minutes and she smells wonderful. The incision looks pretty similar to the old one. It’s healing really quickly.

We’ve got another big week of appointments coming up. On Wednesday, her early intervention team meets to discuss her therapy needs. Right now, she will just be getting physical therapy. On Saturday, she has a pediatrician follow up. On Monday, she has a neurosurgeon follow up. On Tuesday, she has another physical therapy follow up from the hospital. I’m going to need a personal assistant just to keep these appointments straight.