Monday, January 24, 2011
Day 28: Cast-away
Today, Simon had his cast removed. Not just for a skin check, but for good this time (or at least until we repeat the program at some future date). For the rest of this week, the team will be working with Simon to practice bi-lateral skills, so that moving forward Simon will (hopefully), not simply revert back to using his "good side" for all tasks, but will actively engage his left side as much as possible.
Weirdly, I'm a little sad to see it go. I feel that, though he has made steady progress throughout the program, it was just in the last week or so that he'd built the strength and coordination necessary to use the limb for any meaningful task. He went from simply being able to rake and swat at objects, to being able to pick things up, isolate fingers (sort of), and actually PLAY with toys again. It makes me wonder what he'd be able to accomplish within another four weeks.
It is also just in the past few days that we've noticed what seems to be a slight shift in Simon's speech.. or maybe, more accurately, in his ability to interact, to communicate. For the first time, ever, when I called for him, he REPLIED. When his sister fell down yesterday, he ASKED HER if she was alright. He said that! "Are you alright?" Sunday morning I had the closest thing to a conversation I have ever had with him -- he said he wanted to get tickets to go on a train. Being playful, I asked him where he wanted to go, not expecting any sort of reply. Without hesitation, he told me that he wanted to go to the beach with mommy and daddy. Surprised, but wanting to keep it going, I asked him what we would do at the beach. He said we would have a picnic.
For years, I have longed to talk to my little boy. To ask him what his favorite color is. To tell him when his birthday is coming and find out where he wants to have his party. Does he want Pirates or Elmo on the party bags? I want to plan a trip to Disney with him, the way we did with Olivia when she turned five, and have him understand enough that the anticipation will keep him up at nights and drive us all a little crazy.
To comprehend, and be comprehended. To begin to explore all the wonders of childhood that require communication to be fully understood and enjoyed. I want to be able to show Simon how wonderful the world can be, how beautiful and exciting and fun it is to be a kid before his childhood is over and we all have to grow up too soon.
As I write this I find that I am literally holding my breath. We're on the edge of a precipice and I want to take Simon, hold hands and jump. Can it be that the connections we were hoping for are happening? How freeing that would be.