One of the things I like to do with C’s therapist is talk about the small changes we see each week. Because, big picture, development is slow. At 6 months I thought C was close to sitting. At 9 months I was positive she was nearly there. Now, at 11 months (adjusted! I never think in “actual” terms.) we aren’t really that much closer. By focussing on the little changes, we keep momentum.
C has made enormous progress in many ways. Months ago I wasn’t sure if she’d ever use her fingers and hands as her arms were often just pinned to her side. Now she can move them, spread her fingers, and she works very hard to guide things to her mouth. Months ago she used to lay on the carpet, barely moving (but always smiling at everyone!) Now she wiggles up on her side, rolls from tummy to back, kicks her legs and arms, reaches for things, and can sit for a little while with just a little support. On your lap she will wriggle and move.
C can prop herself on a tray for quite a long period. Propping on the floor is much harder for her. Her hands still fist in this position as most of her energy is working on keeping up her head.
This is what she looks like when she gets tired. She’ll start to lay her head down.
Oh, and I had a crazy idea recently. A family friend pointed me toward some research on kids with CP and getting them moving earlier in modified toy cars. I see how B is learning to navigate her space – to move around chairs or crawl over items. C, being immobile, doesn’t get that education. I was trying to think how we could encourage her to do a crawling movement. I think I had seen a video of a child on a scooter board crawling around somewhere. So I ordered one and tried her on it. We’ve only tried it a few times and she wasn’t too impressed, but an added advantage is that it gets her propped up into a sort of “hands and knees” position and encourages her to lift her head. You can see here how her left arm is more involved than her right. The right one, which is less prone to spasticity, is relaxed at her side. Her left arm is fisted and twisted with the wrist facing out slightly.
And then she’s tired of being man-handled.
B is always ready to help. Or steal a toy.
Miss B needs an update too. She is army-crawling around right now, dragging herself very quickly. She is starting to bring herself to knees, but hasn’t quite got the true crawling down yet. She hates to bear weight on her feet. She also has five words, which is crazy for a tiny thing. My others didn’t talk until past one.