Sunday, April 20, 2008

Best husband/dad and Kaela's new skill

I have been really bad about posting lately. There have been several times I have wanted to write about something that's happened, but the days go by so fast I just don't get to it. So this post may have some random points, but I also want to highlight a few things.
I want to start by saying I have the BEST husband and my kids have the BEST dad. I know there are some great ones out there, but I have to give some love to Matt. I don't say how great he is as much as I should. He is home with the kids while I'm at work everyday, he takes them with him while he works, he cares for them, loves them, plays with them and is does everything in his power to be sure everyone is happy. He is so calm and has more patience then anyone I know (including myself). He is here for us everyday of every week and I want him to know how much I appreciate him and love him as do the kids.
A couple weeks ago Matt made a digger out of play dough, which won Will over in seconds. Will was so excited that he even wanted to sleep with the play dough digger. As you can imagine that doesn't work too well. Once the play dough drys it crumbles, which ends up in Will screaming that his digger broke. Ugh, how well can you really explain to your two year old that it's play dough and that's what happens. He doesn't really care, he wants it fixed. Well a friend of mine suggested getting some clay that you cook and it gets real hard, so off to the store I went for some clay. I don't know who was more excited ,Will or Matt. Matt spent some time putting a digger, bulldozer and crane together for Will. Matt is sooo artistic, I tried and well, it wasn't pretty. Here are some pictures of Matt's creations and Will's new found love :)

Pretty cool dad!
Now, as for Kaela, she is growing and getting into EVERYTHING. She is so cute and so busy. She can be found under the table, down the hall playing with the door stopper, all the way into Will's room, anywhere she can get. But as of the other day her newest thing is pulling herself up on things. Not onto her feet, but onto her knees. She started with the box of wipes. She was so excited to get herself up there and then over she goes. Once she found her way into her brothers room, she found a stool to get up on. I bought a stool at PB awhile ago for Will to get up into his big boy bed. I moved it into the living room for Kaela to play on and she is so happy. I think she just likes having a different view. I don't blame her. You will also notice that her hair is getting SOOO long. Don't you just love how it sticks straight up :)

I'm so happy we have some nice weather. We spent a lot of time outside and at parks this weekend! Will just loves being outdoors. I think he would sleep in in sandbox if we let him. Here are a couple pics from the parks and at home over the weekend.

I love taking pictures, can you tell? I think my little sis appreciates them all since she lives in Texas and doesn't get to see them very often. Love you Rachie.

One last thing. I haven't posted much about Kaela's brace (I was reminded of this over the weekend :0) ) since she got it awhile ago. We did go in for xrays a few weeks ago to see how she looked with the brace on and the brace off having worn it for a few weeks. We came out of that appointment with some good news. Dr. Hensinger said that her back actually looks better since it has been on. There wasn't a huge change in the degree of the curve, but it actually looked a little better and hasn't gotten worse. This is of course great news. I imagine Kaela's spine will continue to curve, but the longer we can prolong surgery or the more we can stop the curve the better! What I mean by that is obviously we will never know how much her spine would have curved had we not used the brace, but hopefully the brace in the end, even if Kaela has bad curvature, it will be a little milder then it would have been. We can only hope. So good news thus far, even though she would prefer not to wear it. We go back in July for more xrays and I imagine we will go back soon to check the sizing for the brace :) From now on, I think I will try and post more regularly so that I don't write these monster blog post :)

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Making new friends

Yesterday was a big day for us. We took a short road trip to Monroe to meet some very special people. Tonya, Knoahs mom, had a bunch of us lp parents over with our little ones. We finally got to meet the famous Knoah. He is such a ham! Tonya, as we all know, is wonderful. She has such a beautiful family. Thanks Tonya for a fun afternoon! We also met Catie and her very cute little girl, Hannah. Hannah showed us some of her new dance steps she's learning in dance class. She was VERY good and fun to watch. And I must add, very flexible! She came running into the room and landed her self right into the splits! Way to go Hannah!Catie and her husband also have a very cute and sweet little boy named Alex. It was so great to meet them. Catie was kind enough to bring us all some awesome strawberry pie! YUMM!
Then we met Sue and her family. Her and her husband have three boys. Her older two were off playing most of the time with Tonya's older son, so we didn't see much of them, but we did get to see Aidan, who I have to say is absolutely adorable! He has beautiful eyes and hair!

Sue doesn't have a blog, so I guess we get the joy of showing him off for her :)

Cat, Jennifer and Owen were also there. We met them in February, but it was very exiting to see them again. Owen is such a cutie and got to show off his new moves...he's starting to walk. He was lots of fun to watch. It's so nice seeing Jennifer there too- you are such a good grandma! Your love for Owen really shows! He's so lucky to have such a hands on grandma.

It's great knowing we have such a great group of families around. I know that one day it will mean a lot to our little ones knowing they have friends not too far away that will understand each other more then the average person. It's also really great having the moms and dads for support. I'll try and get a few more pics of the group of kids together and moms with our kids. I hope we can all meet up again sometime in the near future.

I like this pic of everyone although no one is really looking... Alex wanted to steal the show, which was just fine. You can tell everyone thought he was pretty cute :)

How cute is this!? Hannah giving Owen a big hug!

Knoah going in for a kiss! Knoah and Kaela wanted to share in the joy of NO brace !:)

Kaela and Owen to the right.

Tonya and Knoah. Knoah is enjoying some apple pie!

Jennifer with her grandson Owen and Kaela.

Okay, I'll stop, now that I've added 100 pictures :)

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

The brighter side of life

I've been doing some thinking the last couple of days about how much attention some of the negative websites, videos, etc. have received recently. It has made me think a lot about how we as the parents of little people have so much to think about, and so many choices to make. I know being the mother of Kaela I started worrying about if she would ever go to the prom, if she would be made fun of, if she would ever find true love, before she was even born. I think this is a natural reaction when we hear that there is going to be something different about our child whether it be dwarfism or something else. We worry about how our children will be accepted when they have an obvious difference. It's our job as parents to protect our children and worry about them, but I feel like there is too much attention to the negative parts of life. The fact is we all are going to have moments in life that cause us to feel different or times when someone makes fun of us. Of course some people, maybe including our children, will have more moments then others, but I worry about all the attention this negative publicity gets. I feel like these ignorant people are getting exactly what they want: attention. We go look at their websites or react to their comments and they win. What are we getting out of it other then getting angry and defensive? It's a natural reaction of course, but it makes me wonder if it's really what is best for us as parents and for our children. I know I'm writing something that not everyone is going to agree with, and I'm okay with that. I think we all have the right to do what we want in our lives and I am completely open to that. We are a very accepting family and don't really judge peoples opinions or decisions. I am simply putting my thoughts and feelings down here (with the help of Matt, because I believe we agree a lot on this issue). I think that it's more important to focus on the positive things and what our children can and will do. To look at all these wonderful options they have in this big scary world and how with parents like all of us they will get exactly what they want. I want Kaela to always focus on the positive things. I want her to know that yeah, there are some ignorant people out there who write stupid things or say stupid things, but there are also some wonderful people out there that she will meet in her life who will love her and admire her. Again, it's natural to worry about our children who are 'different' from our other children, but the truth is, our 'average' children may have an even harder time in life. We just don't know when it comes to our kids. I have some friends and acquaintances who have children with autism, down syndrome, and other disabilities that affect their child's cognitive skills and I am so thankful every day that Kaela's just going to be little. Sure she will go through some surgeries, sure she will feel some pain and discomfort, but all in all, I think she will be okay. She will be able to go out in the world on her own one day, she will (of course following the path of mommy and daddy) go to college, get a job doing something she loves, and choose a life for herself. There are limitations for her in terms of what she can reach or sports she can play but it's okay if she needs to use a step stool to wash her hands. I guess what it comes down to in my thought process is that I wish there was more focus on the positive things and less on the negative. I think our children (all of our children) are just beautiful little beings. They learn from us and will grow learning things from us. We have made a choice as a family to teach Kaela and Will that regardless of any obstacles in their way, they can obtain any goal they set. We don't choose to just tell them this, we believe this. We look at them as equals because they are. They are both people first and for most. They deserve to be treated like they are people and will hopefully grow to love others and most importantly be happy. I know that the more negative things I read about dwarfism or Metatropic Dysplasia more specifically the more depressed I would become. Of course I still have to read things in order to learn and be a better parent and advocate for Kaela, but I take everything I read with a grain of salt. I know that she is a beautiful little girl inside and out. I know that Will is a handsome little man inside and out. I know Will at the age of 2 has a great sense of humor and that he is truly one of the most compassionate people I have ever known. I know that Kaela is already a sassy little girl who will handle herself just fine whether she is 3 feet tall or 5 feet tall. I know that both Kaela and Will can give you a smile that will melt your heart..and probably get them that toy or candy they are begging for :) My hope by writing this is to encourage all of you to either write a post or leave a comment with some positive things about your child just the way he or she is. Even the little things matter. I can say that these short chubby little legs Kaela has are the cutest darn legs I've ever seen. Sure they are short, but they sure are cute :) Some of us have surgeries coming up, doctors appointments, illnesses, etc., and it makes things much easier to think of how much it stinks that our children have to go through this....but I really feel like Kaela is so lucky at the same time. Sure she will have her ups and downs and sure, so will we, but hopefully by avoiding negative people (as much as possible) we can minimize the hurt. These ignorant people out there want attention, and I don't want to give it to them. We are so lucky to have the children we have and I am so thankful for both of my children. They have taught me so much and I know having Kaela in our lives, we as a family, will be able to teach so many others. To think that she could change one persons view of little people or anyone with any kind of difference is really the greatest gift and more then anything I could have ever done had I never had her. I think that's a pretty big positive :)
I'm writing this a day later because I felt like I needed to add something. I, in no way, am impling that we should not educate people or stand up for our children or friends when something is said. I hope that this was understood :) I just think it's also important to not give attention where it is not needed..again, just my opinions here.

I wanted to share the pictures of Kaela and Will with the gifts grandma brought back from Texas while visiting Aunt Rachie. Will's cute vest from The Alamo and Kaela's little dress :) How cute!