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Wednesday, August 24, 2011

showers, driving, eating, and...famous people?

Today was a step (a really close step!) to meeting one of our birthday goals! His OT is so encouraging and positive with everything that we try with him. I’m impressed with the way that she pushes him to get his brain to work. The first time she had taken him driving, she said we wanted his brain to start working, so we needed to put it in a position that it had to work. Well, weaning me out of the shower hasn’t been going so great because he does still need some help, but mostly because Cale gets scared. Well, my last conversation about the shower with her, she said try getting in with him and then right back out. Set up a reason of why I would need to leave and just see if he can do it. Even though I was a bit nervous, that’s exactly what I did this morning. I got in first and then helped him in, but then right away I said I needed to get out and just left him with direction of what he needed to do.

I kept checking just two see how it was going and from all that I could see he was doing great! He asked once or twice for help and at the end he needed help with turning the water off, but other than that…HE SHOWERED ALL BY HIMSELF!!!!!!!!!!!!

This is HUGE!!! HUGE! It’s so exciting!! We’re still working to get him fully independent, but today was a very large step in that direction! :)

After his shower I was telling him how proud I was of him and how great he did, his reply, “I hated it. It was dumb and boring.” Haha! Oh man…

Cale has discovered the stairs in our house over the last two weeks. Unlike the shower, the stairs are not a good thing. I’ve caught him going down three times now on his own! He doesn’t understand why it’s not a great idea and sees absolutely no problem in the slightest. It’s really not safe for him to do them all by himself. I thought about putting up a baby gate, but then I fear that he would just try to climb over because he’s tall enough. I’m not sure how to solve this problem! He’s just stretching me and possibly causing gray hair to come at an early age! Yikes!

On another good note…he has been very helpful lately! He’s offered a couple times in the last few days if I needed help or he just tries to do it himself. We’ve slowly been working on him carrying a dish from each meal to the sink. This causes him to use his cane a little less and to balance more. It also helps me out! :) The other night, I had been busy in the kitchen with Mama while he was finishing up dinner. Without realizing at first, Cale had cleared all of his dishes (on his own!!) from the table! I didn’t ask or say anything about it! He also had to make several trips because he can only carry one dish at a time. Last night he took his cup into the kitchen after he was done with it. I had the dishwasher open so that I could load his cup and start it. Well, instead of just setting his cup on the counter or putting it in the sink, he tried to load it on his own! It was glass and because of balance, coordination, and how the dishes were already fitted in the dishwasher, it almost broke, but that didn’t matter. It was so awesome that he was really trying to help! Good stuff!

This afternoon was OT. We’re still working with him on driving. He has to really focus on scanning on his left side because that area seems to be what is forgotten. He’s doing amazing! Every time we go he’s getting better and better! Today the OT gave him an option after a while to keep going or be done and he chose to keep going. A little later she asked again and he said keep going. Finally on the third time after he worked so hard, he let us know he was done. That in itself is awesome because we’ve all really been trying to work with Cale to let us know he’s done or needs a break rather than having a meltdown or explosion. It’s a new thing for him to have to relearn his limits. When we turned on our road, Teresa pulled over and had Cale drive down the street and pull into the driveway! I know that felt so good for him! The smile spread across his face could have lit up NYC!

Shortly after OT it was time for PT. We had an earlier session then we usually do. We had been trying to do swimming as much as possible, but Cale quickly needed to move on from that. Carley has been trying to mix it up again, but it’s hard finding things that are working for him. I asked Cale today if he had an idea for PT and he said to go for a walk. Starbucks is close by and we’ve walked there before in therapy, so I suggested to go there again. At first he agreed, but it didn’t take too long before he decided he would rather walk to McDonalds. I was thinking the walk was going to be way too far, even though we live pretty close (terrible in every way!). His PT was up for the idea and Cale was up for the challenge so we went! He was definitely tired by the time we made it to our destination and the walk back was a struggle, but he made it!!!!! I’m so proud of him because that was so far for him!

The story of the special shoes…

As you’ve been reading, I’m back into baby craving. It’s been something so strong on my heart and I’ve spent a ton of time praying about it. Cale and I have had several conversations and well, I just want it so badly and yet at times it seems so far away. A few things have been pointed out to me while reading scripture and through the conversations with Cale at night. I know God’s timing is perfect and whether it’s waiting for another couple years or if it happens next month, it needs to be not just when I think it’s the perfect time.

So, while at McDonalds, I was talking to Carley about all of it. She encouraged me that a baby could actually be a really great thing for Cale and help him to feel that purpose again and give him something to work for. We also talked about how much more that would put on me.

After a long conversation about it, we left McDonalds and pass the parking lot on the grass area where we were crossing there was a tiny pair of pink shoes just sitting there! I of course immediately was questioning the Lord…! Cale stopped and was poking them with his cane. I was trying to figure out what he was doing but then he hooked the shoe with his cane and lifted it up, stuck it in his pocket and said, “I’m keeping it.” He then went to pick up the second one. Carley asked if it was for his baby someday and he said, “Yep. For our baby someday.” This moment brought tears to my eyes! I think if I wouldn’t have been so confused at first by what he was doing, I might have completely lost it right there in the parking lot. It was such a sweet thing for him to do.

We gave Basil a much needed bath tonight. I’ve been talking about doing it for weeks and still haven’t taken the time to actually do it. Cale and I went outside to sit for a bit and decided it was a good time. I had Cale help hold the leash and then the hose. We got a little wet, but for the most part I think it was a success!

Side notes…

I am not a fan of the air conditioner. Sometimes it gets so hot that for a period of time it is needed, but for the most part I don’t love it. One of the bummers about summer is that every building you go into has the temperature cold enough for penguins to survive. I have sweaters with me in restaurants or I freeze! At home Mama always says that I’m making her melt because I just don’t realize that it’s hot. Today Cale was sitting at the table and when I walked over to him, he had sweat dripping down his forehead! I took that as the clue to turn the air on! The sad part is that it’s not the first time that I’ve made my pour husband sweat before noticing it was hot in the house! Uh…Oops!

Cale’s PT heard on the radio that Adam Sandler and Owen Wilson are here in town filming a movie!!! Here of all places…crazy. They were at the fair today, but I couldn’t get over there with Cale. I’m going to be on the hunt and if I just so happen to see them…there will be pictures! I repeat-there will be pictures!


  1. Kathleen, you crack me up! No one's blog makes me laugh out loud like yours does. It's things that I don't expect to read - Cale poking the shoes with his cane, you thinking about putting up a baby gate (ha!), and your 'I repeat, there will be pictures!' And I love the description of his big smile after driving.

    Babies.... ahhh... my idea is this: changing diapers is super easy to do sitting down. Wonderful way to work on Cale's fine motor skills, am I right?!? You could make Cale the Master Changer! As soon as he agrees to this role, and practices on a few squirmy babies, he's ready. And then, HAVE a baby! Yay!

  2. I take it you guys are having a girl!! My daughter and her husband stack two baby gates for their one dog. His place is in the bathroom when they leave for the day and can't take the dogs. Two gates might seem like a put down for Cale, but at least he couldn't climb over them. The bottom one could be secured to the wall. The top one could be taken on and off as needed. I am so pleased Cale is beginning to do things for himself...showering, YAY...taking care of the dishes, for me, is a BIG help. I love you. Marion

  3. Maegan: I agree with the diapers! I'm totally good with him being the master changer! ;)
    Marion:I think the two baby gates might be more of a goal to get through rather than something that would help him, but that is a good idea for the dogs! Also, I'm good with a girl or boy!Either one on my tummy will be perfect! :)

  4. Kathleen,I wonder if a shower radio would make him feel less alone? If it wouldn't distract him, some good music might make it more enjoyable for him. It's just a thought. :)

  5. That's a great thought, but so far because of the noise of the bathroom fan and the shower, any other noise really bothers him. It might be worth a shot though!

  6. Kathleen - Geesh I miss you ! I miss getting to sit down and digest all the morsels of goodness rich with life, laughter and a lot of wisdom. I have been working, doing horse camp ,and having company- it's been a crazy summer. BUT NOW UPON MY RETURN ,to visit, I find Caleb doing soooo much more !!!Praise the Lord for he is good and his mercies endurth forever even to the Next, and Next and Next ..... generations. I love the idea of you getting the desires of your heart. A baby is God's plan for the world to continue, and for you and Caleb to continue on FORWARD as well. As long as I have known you, you have been waiting for this child,the perfect time - yea we all want that, but we all have different deffinitions of what that really means. God's got it all for us if we will ask him. Pray and believe that you have recieved and you shall have it- Time is our thing not God's he looks at our lives and sees it all beginning middle and end. Love it that he uses all tenses - because it is all fulfilled in Him - I encourage you to trust God and allow Him to make the decision for you ~ In all your ways acknowledge him and he will direct your path.Love Love Love you !!!!! Praying for you both - and soooo encouraged by Caleb's progress!!!!!! ((())) Reenie !

  7. Reenie: I've been missing all of your sweet encouraging comments! Glad that you had a full good summer though! :)

  8. Yay for working on those goals and being such a big help! I didn't know he was working on driving already! That is super cool! Talking about baby's and suddenly see a pair of pink shoes!!! Hmm..? hehe! That is soo sweet of Cale to pick them up and say that! Fingers crossed for sooner than later! But if it's later that's ok too! ;) I know what you mean about taking sweaters into restaurants with you! I almost consider taking a blanket to cover my legs when I wear shorts! haha! Good luck with spotting those famous people! That would be sweet to get a couple pictures with them! <3


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