A Quick Update

My oh my…where to begin?

So much has happened during my absence…so many good things to share. In that short time, we have sold our beloved home in Butler-Tarkington, we bought a new house in the Irvington area (a really cool, urban, community-driven neighborhood), we moved (I’m so proud of my husband for moving us himself) and we have been enjoying each and every moment in making this new place our home. I will post pictures soon and will share all of the joys of this new place, but for now I wanted to tell you about the little girl that you all come back here to read about…our Lola.

How is Lola?

If just one word could describe her, it would be: awesome.

Last night as Rob was making dinner, I started a list of all that Lola has been doing in the past two weeks. Our list overflowed to a second side of paper and I chuckled as I realized how much a child can change in just a couple of short weeks.

Here is what we came up with:

She is babbling like crazy…in fact, she talks almost every minute of the day.

She mimics so many different sounds now. Everything from syllables to sounds to words (in her own way). I’m not too proud to share, but when my mom was here, she said “bull&*%#” and it sure sounded like Lola said that same word! I wasn’t thrilled that bull&*%# is one of her first words, but I’m ecstatic that she is trying to make similar sounds. Now she doesn’t consistently repeat syllables and we don’t think she knows why she says certain things, but hey…sister has to start somewhere.

She knows what the following words mean: banana (holy cow I have never seen a child get so excited over a food!), bite, drink and she gets the gist of what “no” is.

Now with being more vocal comes being more vocal about dislikes as well. She will throw fits just as any other two-year-old would. She is starting to loathe getting in the car seat because she is Miss Independent these days. It literally sounds as if we are torturing her by strapping her in that darn thing. And don’t try to take anything away from her. I think if she could say “It’s mine” that would be her theme phrase. But on the flip side of this new development, Lola can actually visually see what she wants which is something new for her.

Going along with her sight, it is so amazingly good now. Her vision is much more accurate…it honestly has been a miracle to witness! She rarely will miss an item when trying to reach for it. She is able to watch us do an action and she will try to imitate it such as rinsing her hair with a cup in the bathtub or trying to wash it.

She is adamant about feeding herself even though the utensils continue to be a challenge. But she can see the tiniest crumb and have the visual ability to accurately feed it to herself. Textures are not nearly as difficult as they once were. She still likes to mash everything up, but she doesn’t lose focus of the task at hand. While the item such as a Nutrigrain Bar will be demolished from her baby hulk hands, she will still continue to try to eat all of the little pieces whereas before the texture would distract her attention.

Along with the food topic, sister will eat anything and everything! Many nights her dinner is much more complex than mine and Rob’s. Her latest loves are spicy Indian lentil dishes. She is completely weaned off the bottle which honestly was not difficult at all. We agreed one night to stop giving her a bottle and she never once fussed for it. Clearly change is easier for her than my creature of habit self.

She continues to appropriately play with toys. Her OT is mesmerized every time she comes to visit because Lola’s play abilities continue to drastically improve. Her new room has built-in cabinets so we have decluttered her toys so she can focus all of her attention on one toy at a time. Rather than simply banging toys together, you can see her try to manipulate them in order to figure out the purpose and how they work.

She understands the function of items throughout the house (in which she loves freely exploring). She can open and shut drawers, open and close cabinets, turn on and off the light switch near her crib, open the curtains to see outside. Our house is a continuous baby proofing work in progress as she is into everything. She knows right where the kitchen is, where her baths take place, where the TV is. She knows where the stairs are and attempted to climb them one afternoon (talk about scary).

While Lola continues to thrive in many areas, she is still not able to walk. I think it will be just like crawling…she will do it when she is ready and able. But she is starting to take steps with the help of an aid. She is also able to sidestep laterally along the entertainment stand. In fact, she will step along the stand and over to the window in arms reach distance and then back to the stand. I can see her confidence improving as she is becoming much more daring in her choices of standing aids. She pulls up on anything and everything in sight…myself included.

Perhaps one of the biggest accomplishments that has taken place is that Lola is now sleeping in her own room. In all honesty though, I think it is more of an accomplishment for me than for Lola. In fact, Lola has been perfectly fine with the transition…and me…well it was hard in the beginning, but I’m getting used to it as well. I have a video baby monitor right next to me so I can check on her at any moment. I know she is safe and I also have faith that she is no longer having seizures so the time was right. She can no longer grab at our toes when she wants to come snuggle in our bed which I kind of miss, but she will let you know when she wants in mommy and daddy’s bed. Usually at around 5:00 am, she will begin to whimper for us to come get her and I am always suckered into doing so. We’ll have to deal with that issue at some point, but for now…I’m proud of my ability to let her gain this independence.

And perhaps my favorite item to share of all…Lola has become the most affectionate child. She hugs, she loves kisses, she wants to be held, she wants to feel the security of your arms wrapped around her when she is hurt, she wants to be near us, she just is our little love bug. Rob and I constantly comment about how sweet she is and then…the two-year-old emerges and we wonder where our sweet babe has gone. I guess it’s all in a typical parents day.

I will have access to my actual computer later this week, so I will be back with pictures of the girl and of our new home. I love saying that…our new home. I’m overwhelmed with happiness folks. My heart is full today. It’s full of love and gratitude. Love and gratitude.