Blogging about life in Minnesota, raising our six kids with Down syndrome while battling Breast Cancer.

Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the floor in the morning the devil says, "Oh shit! She's up!"

Wednesday, May 07, 2014

Today he noticed his sister

If you've been reading here for awhile, you've read about Abel, and how he doesn't notice people. Its probably some of the strangest post institutional behavior I have seen. If a person (or animal) does not serve a purpose to him, he does not see them. He also cannot "see" outside of a certain distance away. His vision is fine, it is a psychological thing. I can show up at school and observe him in his activities, but he does not notice me until I get within his processing zone, which is about 15-20 feet. Anything outside of this area, he cannot process.

This morning Abel got up for the day, came to the kitchen and spontaneously gave Audrey a hug! Dean and I were both shocked. Audrey has not existed in his world because she serves him no purpose.  She has tried her best to get him to notice her, but he just walks away annoyed.

This morning Audrey was doing her morning stim dance. I thought maybe I could change it to a song so taught her the "Baby Bumble Bee" song. Abel loved it and joined right in, trying his best to say the words and making the "zzzzzz" sound at the end. Audrey loved it took, and soon the three little kids were all doing it together. So while I made the morning oatmeal we sang about 18 rounds of that.

Yesterday Audrey said "baby" for the first time. This is her first true word. This morning I asked her, "Where's the baby?" and she ran to get it, with Asher on her heels. We played with the baby a moment then I put it into Audrey's high chair then got a small dish and spoon, pretending to feed the baby. Audrey was NOT impressed this baby was in HER chair, but Abel? Oh he was all over this activity! He spent a good 10 minutes pretending to feed the baby, even using the edges of the spoon to clean the baby's face. He was so very gentle with the baby! Then he got a towel from the drawer and wiped the baby's face.

Then it was time to let Audrey sit in her chair for breakfast. Abel really wanted to feed her but he had his own breakfast to tend to. All the kids ate, Abel finishing first as usual. He waited patiently for Audrey to finish, then used the towel to gently wipe her face and wanted to lift her out of the high chair. (he needs to be a bit taller to do this.) When I handed him clothes for the day he pointed to Audrey and signed "get dressed", and looked at me expectantly, waiting for me to hand her clothes too.

This is such a major leap today for Abel. We so saw many attempts at speech, plus telling us things in sign that he had to come up with on his own without using wrote phases. Not to mention noticing he has a sister! That was the best part of all!!!

Today I take the three boys to the eye doctor. Audrey will be along for the ride so it should be fun keeping the four kids occupied in the tiny exam room for a coupe of hours, especially with their eyes dilated. Audrey's visit is not until later this month and Angela's in June.


DandG said...

What a treasure Audrey is! Your kids are all so good for each other!

Anonymous said...

What a breakthrough! Way to go, Abel!

Relle said...

That is awesome. I'm teary reading that. How cool two amazing moments, Audrey saying her first word and Abel noticing he has a sister and signing to you about it. So like our God to bless us with God moments, to show us what He's restoring when we really need them. Hugs