Lola is Awesome and Being Proactive

Today was a girl’s day out for Lola and me. I have been so busy working, I felt as if I had been missing out on quality time with my girl. We had intentions of going to the Central Library, but unfortunately it was closed today. So we went to the pool at our local Y Center instead.

Is it just me or does my baby now look like a little girl? I know I’m biased, but what a doll!

The pool was a lot of fun, but I also had other intentions for going. Lola’s therapy has been lacking because we have tapped out the exercises we were shown in Costa Rica. Lola is bored and while we are creative with her daily activities, she also needs to start being challenged in a professional therapy setting once again. So today was all about Lola’s senses, her spacial awareness and building strength in her neck/upper back region. While she thought the pool was all about fun, I also worked her little ass off at the same time and she loved it!

Afterward we went to lunch, did a bit of shopping and tried to come up with crafty ideas for Lola’s party. It was exactly what I needed…just to spend time with my daughter. My heart has been heavy with worry about Lola’s future. I think I am finally accepting that Lola does indeed have a vision disability. We may not know the extent of it until she is older, but it is quite obvious my child is severely impaired when it comes to her sight. It is improving, but the reality is that her vision might always be a problem for her in the future. Imagine seeing images, but not being able to process what those images are. She does not have the gift to have the sense of sight come naturally so it is important for us to always teach Lola what she sees in life. I know in my heart that she will overcome this. That she will find a way to navigate through life proudly and assertively even with a vision disability. She may never drive, but thankfully public transportation is on the up and up in every suburban city in the United States. Plus she has really cool parents that would love to drive her around. And while I keep telling myself all of this, the worry still sets in. So today I decided that we have to start being more proactive with Lola’s disability. While we want to treat her as any other child, we still have to remember to skew life in a way that Lola can understand. Through sounds, different textures, recognizing when her vision is being overloaded and always explaining what it is that we are doing. Researchers say that 85% of all early infant learning is done through vision so that means Lola will be experiencing life in a much different way. While I wish Lola did not have to endure such a challenge, I know that she is going to come out an incredibly strong little girl because of it…in fact, she already is.

We have big news to share with all of our readers tonight…Lola fed herself for the very first time today!

Rob and I have been working hard with Lola in an effort to get her to feed herself. We know that this is difficult for Lola as she hasn’t mastered the pointer finger/thumb grabbing technique quite yet. I would imagine her lack of sight plays a big part in this as she can’t see something as tiny as a Cheerio to pick up. Today, we gave her a Mum Mum cracker as it was large enough for her to see and feel. I gently guided her hand up to her mouth and this is where we saw the improvement. She actually opened her mouth and fed the Mum Mum to herself. Usually she would drop the cracker and just eat her hand, but tonight she repeatedly put the cracker to her mouth in an effort to eat. This is much bigger than an inchstone in Lola’s world…in fact I would classify this one as a milestone! We will continue to work on Lola feeding herself, but we are also prepared to understand that skills can come and go. What happens today may not happen tomorrow, but it’s a start and that’s all we can hope for. We are so proud of you Lola! Maybe you will be able to feed yourself First Birthday Cake after all my love!