Thursday, November 24, 2011


I find that the daily grind of parenting a special needs child brings with it some amazing clarity, even in the midst of so much doubt. In parenting any child, there is the daily opportunity to weigh the good, the bad, and the ugly. But somehow, in watching Oli grow in his own little fits and starts, I can rattle off a list of accomplishments far faster than I can with just about any of my other children. Why?

Because no one has ever been able to tell us if he would have any at all.

He learned to speak in two-word sentences? Wow. Great. That's better than expected.

He's walking now? Awesome!

He's figuring out how to pretend? Wondered if that was even possible, but there it is!

So today, as everyone's blog seems to focus on the big sweep of blessing in their lives, I want to celebrate the small stuff. The Oli-sized victories. The things that don't need a holiday to deserve applause. In no particular order, I present four major Oli milestones for which I am thankful:

Oli is learning some visual discrimination skills. While he still can't name a specific color with any regularity, he CAN match two similar objects with fair frequency. Way to go, Oli!

Oli is learning body awareness. Thanks to this take-home activity from his OT, we were able to see that Oli DOES know most of his general body parts, even though he can't find quite the right words or actions to let us know. But building a "mat man" gave him the chance to wow us with his ability to put those parts in the right places with only a little guidance.

Oli is figuring out that toys are a representation of real things. Up until fairly recently, Oli played with a toy truck by running it repeatedly around in circles to watch the wheels spin. He's recently made the connection between the vehicles on the road and the ones in his toy chest. Nice deduction!

The sensory stuff is easing off a bit! Oli loves to play with playdough, dry rice, and other textures that used to make his skin crawl. He's also able to seek out these activities and use them to regulate his system occasionally. This is a big improvement in his quality of life and has opened so many doors for him.

What's on your "thankful list" today?


Sandi said...

Go Oli!

The Reader said...

This post is awesome.

On my thankful list is another "little" thing - my little guy is able to match lower case & upper case letters, usually. He has no idea the names of them, but he remembers the sounds that about 4 of them make. He'll be 7 in Feb, so this is a big little thing for us. I'm thankful that he's learning, even if slowly.

Love love love reading about Oli's big little accomplishments.

EllaJac said...

I love this. I'm so glad he's yours, and that you are his.

Abbybballgurl said...

Praise the Lord for His sweet Amazing Grace!
We are so grateful for all of the bodies around our table today, grieving the ones who are no longer there; but looking ahead with hope to the future because we know that the Lord does all things well! Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!

Abbybballgurl said...

woops! I signed in on my daughters account sorry! God bless! Dana

Susan in the Boonies said...

That's all good stuff!

I'm thankful know...

And you really do! :-D

Tara said...

A friend of mine calls these "inchstones"...not quite milestones, but worthy of recognition just the same!

Being the mom of a child with special needs has taught me to celebrate ALL of them! We are so much more aware of everyone's accomplishments because Eon is in our lives. Sweet!

(And, as an OT, I can tell you that those skills Oli is mastering are impressive!)

Jill said...

He's beautiful! What a positive post:o).

Camille said...

Yippee!!! How fun that you have documented these milestones in one post for your precious son! God is Good.

Many blessings,