Saturday, August 4, 2012

Olympic Spirit

As much of the planet knows, we are smack dab in the middle of the Olympics.  My news feed has been awash daily with national pride, good natured ribbing and sadly, some not-so good natured politics.  My favourite posts so far are from the parents who are winning silver in their hair from the "sports" that their kids are reenacting in living rooms around the world.  We too have been affected by the spirit of the 30th Olympiad, but not in a way that you might think;  there have been all sorts of medal winning moments here as of late but you won't see any of them replayed on the news.

Last Monday we trekked to the pediatrician's office.  Fortunately for everyone involved, it wasn't a repeat of our previous trip.  We decided to be ahead of the game by confirming the appointment properly twice and arrived over 15 minutes ahead of schedule.  For our efforts, we were rewarded by getting in early;  the secretary mumbled bitchily about the people ahead of us being late, so our appointment time would be moved up.  (Sha-ZAM!)

Zoe, our little mighty mite, is now 10.06 kg (22 lbs) and her older brother Wyatt is 9.06kg (20lbs).  Zoe's weight for her (corrected) age scores her within the 50-75th percentile , while Wyatt is bang on at the 50th percentile for his corrected age on the Ds charts.  Their length has also shown improvement as Zoe, at 75 cm (30 inches) holds her ground at bang on the 25th percentile, while Wyatt has jumped up to the 25-50th percentile at 73 cm (29 inches).  That's great news as I was beginning to fear that they would be tiny forever. 

I found myself irked at a couple of questions that the pediatrician asked.  Such as "does he know his name?" I had to stop and count to ten at these moments and remind myself that she only sees him once every 3 months.  He has come so far since our last appointment that she has a lot of catching up to do.  As we went through the list of accomplishments and goals that we and our ICDSP worker have for him, the subject of the sleep study came up.  We did not receive any results of any kind after his ordeal study and to be honest, I was a little annoyed by it.  As it turned out, she did receive results (in June).  According to the report, Wyatt's apnea levels were within normal limits at all times.  However they did note that he was some snoring at various points, the cause of which was difficult to assess due to... [are you ready for it?]...  "loud parental snoring".  I think I laughed and quipped something about a family of large tonsils, but I could have quite nicely crawled under my chair and died of embarassment.  Did you see the pallet I had to sleep on?  Puh-leeze.  In any event, there are several things with this: 

1) Any higher pressure in his lungs is not due to sleep apnea.
2) He does not have sleep apnea so surgery is not going to be as scary. 
3) I'm betting they will move his surgery date up (due to the pressure being caused by other things).  

Finally, my favourite:
4)  Wyatt may not have sleep apnea, but I probably do. 

We've been chuckling about this for quite some time, despite my mortification.  Sean was more than happy to regale our ICDSP worker when she arrived Monday.  I was in and out with Quinn as we were in the garden staking up our tomato plants, but when not listening to Sean's stories of my snoring, she worked on several things with Wyatt.  He's had a little plateau as of late with the mobility, so I could almost hear the frustration in her voice as she said "He's so close to sitting up, he's got all the parts, he just needs to put it all together".  I agreed and then we discussed working on his ball rolling and sitting exercises.  

The very next day, Wyatt decided to take matters into his own hands.  Mid morning, Quinn looked over to find Wyatt sitting up in the corner.  Excitedly he pointed it out and we all clapped (including Wy, who instead of clapping, raises his hands and waves/Kermit the frog flaps yaaaaaaayyyy! ).  I didn't think much of it as he was right beside a lot of objects that he could have pulled/pushed himself up on.  Later on, in the middle of the floor, he did it again!  And again!  Four times in one day, twice witnessed!  It was amazing.  That was a gold medal performance if we had ever seen one.  It didn't stop there either: the next morning as the babies were exploring the living room, Wyatt was really straining to peek up over the edge of one of the toy baskets.  I casually remarked "Geez Wyatt, if you want to see what's in there, you should sit up!".

So he did.

He leveled his gaze at me, pushed backwards with his arms and pushed himself into a sit.  Then he grabbed what he was going after out of the basket.  It was phenomenal.

Wyatt decided to go for the triple play when he learned to roll the ball later on that same afternoon.  We were sitting with our legs in a V-shape, to allow the ball to roll between us.  Now, previous to this, we would start rolling a ball and Zoe would zip by and run off with it.  It would not matter what type of ball it was either;  large, rubber, tennis, O-ball, we have them all.  We'd start with one, she'd plop herself down in my lap, intercept the ball and be gone!  I'd look at Wy, take another ball out of the basket and roll that one to him.  He'd eventually hit it back to me and whoosh!  Here's Zoe again, going off in a different direction with a ball in each hand.  I thought initially "she's got both her hands full, now's our chance" and went for the third ball. Naturally, I was wrong and she, believing what we had was better, dropped one of the balls and went after the new one.  This would continue on until the basket was empty and she had a stash of balls over in the corner like some sort of obsessed sporting goods squirrel. It also wouldn't matter if I grabbed up one of the ones she'd already taken, as she'd take those back as well.  However, that particular afternoon, Quinn managed to keep her occupied for a few minutes.  We were using a ball with a rattle in it, so for the first bit, Wyatt would just pick it up and shake it.  Then he would rattle it a few times then push it towards me with the back of his hand.  Then he would just roll it towards me.  We were only playing for a short time, but it too was outstanding.  I tried to mix it up a bit with telling him to "shake it!" then "roll it", which he did, flawlessly.  Once again, he has shown us his own unique learning curve of "nothing, nothing, nothing... mastery!" He has shown us again to never lose hope.  He will get there, you just need a little more patience.

Zoe is breaking family records left and right for her physical prowess.  She figured out one day not too long ago that she could climb me like a rock wall.  She digs in her tiny fingers and will use her teeth and toenails if necessary.  It's cute, scary and, well, painful (for me) at times.  Once she figured that out, it was only a matter of time before she made it up to the couch.  Then the couch became a trampoline.  To her credit, she's only vaulted off the couch twice, but I can't tell you how many times I have grabbed her off the arm of the couch as she tries to use it as a pommel horse.  Never mind the silver, I may not have any hair left by the time this one reaches adolescence.

She's also shown a little more interest in her twin as of late.  They are always aware of each other, but other than a fleeting moment here and there (such as her trying to pull him up to a stand by his ears or removing some cherished object that he is currently enjoying), they as most children their age, tend to parallel play.  I've found them working together on several instances, an idea that I have to admit that I can find a bit unsettling.  One of their newest tricks is what we call "boosting the signal".  Before, if one cried, the other would look over as if to say "what's your problem?"  Like this:

Whoa!  DUDE!
"WTF Dude?" (2 days before their first birthday)
Now, if one cries, the other will do the same to make sure they get heard.  I've watched the other look at the crier first to assess the situation and then respond with a yell of a similar pitch, volume and timbre.  It is... freaky.  Especially when there are no tears on the second twin and the keening stops the absolute second the first twin does.

I've also found Zoe sitting down next to Wyatt and chatting to him.  We were coming in from one of our many shopping trips the other day and I had only managed to get Zoe out of her car seat in the living room before having to quickly run back to the door (to assist Sean with some armful of awkwardness he was trying to bring in).  By the time I had walked the 30 feet back to where they were, Zoe had sat down on the floor next to Wy in his car seat and was babbling away at him.  At one point she leaned in and patted him on the head as if to say "S'ok.  Mom will be back soon.".  On my return however, she wobbled off pretending she had more important things to do.  Typical.  Wyatt however, beamed at her from his chair and said "Zazazaza!".

If you're keeping track of Team Logan's teeth tally, we currently have Quinn at -1 (+3 adult), Wyatt at +2 and Zoe at... somewhere between 8 and infinity.  Seriously, it's really sharp in there and there was a period of a week where I was trying to peer in/feel around for a total.  I finally figured out that if I dangled a cookie up over her head, she'd open her mouth and look up.  Works for both toddlers and pets.  I discovered then that she has 11:  eight in the front and three molars.  Apparently, cuspids are still for losers.

Quinn is having all sorts of adventures that only a boy of six can appreciate.  He's discovered that he loves day camp, which is awesome.  They swim every day, hike, climb the rock wall, do crafts, archery... all sorts of outdoorsy sporty stuff, which he likes very much.  We like the fact that it gives him a break from the babies, puts him with kids his own age and then runs him bloody ragged.  He tells us of his day in a sleepy voice once he gets home and assuming he stays conscious through his dinner, he retires early to do it all over again.  It is awesome.  He is growing up so damn fast; at least this way he has some great summer memories that don't involve the TV or waiting patiently for one of us to finish something so that it can be his turn.

When he's not exploring the great outdoors or playing with his siblings, Quinn continues to draw.

Quinn's Olympic Tribute
On my beer fridge, yet.
When I found this international salute, I was stumbling blurry eyed to my Tassimo, which sits on top of the mini-fridge.  I called him over and asked him about his artwork;  he proceeded to whip out his globe and not only show me each of these countries, but also the capitals.  Wow.  That's a lot from a 6 year old, especially before 8 am (and more specifically, my coffee).

We are not a sporting family, but we have won more than our fair share of victories here lately. They probably seem not much to most people, but to us they are world class performances.  Wyatt works harder every day than other kids his age.  Right now they are all doing their own thing as they grow:  Quinn is picking at his dinner in larger quantities and is now going to bed early, Zoe eats everything that isn't nailed down and has given up sleeping at night and Wyatt sleeps only at night and during mealtimes.  Just as the Olympics started, lots of folks were talking about the "Olympic Mom" Best Job Commercial from P&G. I can relate to this.  My family is a lot like this.  Watching Wyatt sit up for himself the first time, after months and months of trying... I can't even describe properly how that felt.  No crowds roared.  No medals were awarded,  but, I felt so incredibly proud as I hugged my child and cried.  I relate a lot more to this one too, one that does not get the same amount of airplay:

The rest of the world may not see Wyatt as I do... yet.  One day they will.  One day he and others with a learning disability will be able to live their dreams, free of prejudice.  Soon.  Until then, we will continue to press on, through the pain and the rewards alike.  Come what may, my children, are always going to be 1,2,3 on the podium as far as this judge is concerned.


  1. Many thanks to Quinn for drawing also the flag of my country (Italy).
    And yes, the latest achievements of your children are great and worthy to be celebrated.

  2. They really do give medals for the most arbitrary things, don't they? I have some (though not olympic, obvs) for hitting the center of a circle with a sharp stick as well as a basket someone hiked up way too high with a ball that can barely fit in, BUT are they giving me one for being able to have my piping hot coffee peacefully (AND enjoy it) while I also have a 9-month-old hanging from the cup? Nope. WTF?

    No one's giving the Babe medals for anything either, although she works harder than anyone I know. I guess this is where my philosophy comes into play (and why I haven't actually seen any of the olympics yet. It's not the complicated remote, it's principle. Yeah.) according to which I don't really expect any strangers to really get the hoopla about stuff the Babe can do now, but i also don't understand the celebration over someone who just happens to have, by pure accident, been born in the same country as me and is able to run really fast (purely hypothetical for a FInn), or throw a sharp stick really far and not hit folks, or be able to get a well done burger patty behind a dude who looks like a human tank? I mean, i get the individual feat (kind of) but the association by nationality? Why isn't everyone celebrating babe's straw drinking prowess. She's worked harder at it than any gymnast. And I came from a nation where it's news that the summer is hot or that the strawberry season is *ON*.
    I think you've hit on something that isn't really highlighted about Ds at all: When people hear 'delay' they just take it to mean that things will eventually happen on their own pace, but never really get how much frikken work goes into stuff too. I might have to do a post. Might.

    Sorry for not really commenting? Or did I? I don't know anymore. (and you wrote about snoring, which normally would have been my cue...)


    1. :) Coffee indeed. Our kids work hard all year round, every year. Not just every four.


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