I know I've written about the restrictions and challenges Lamp faces, but I'd like to talk about some of the things she can do because there are definitely lots of things that she can do. Sometimes that little babe has me in awe of her one-armed skillz. And who knows, maybe this will help someone out there with a child as well--with or without special needs.
As seen in the picture above she can pick things up. I know I talk a lot about her not being able to grab things...and that's true, she has yet to grab with both arms coming together, but she loves picking things up. Usually she picks up rings-like objects or hoops. But when I saw her grab those toy coins above with just the rim I am reminded by how dexterous she can be with those fused little fingers. One of her favorite things is to have a basket of toys in front of her while she just pulls things out one by one. So while she has a long way to go in the grabbing department, she's pretty good in the picking up department.
Along those same lines she can also get her binky in her mouth all by herself and has been able to since she was about 4 or 5 months old. Maybe it's not something you'd normally thing about, but it can be those small things that can really make a difference in her life and ours. Her therapist introduced us to the wubbanub or paci plushies when Lamp was still a young baby. They're basically just pacifiers attached to small stuffed animals that make it really easy to keep the paci in place as baby sleeps and allows even small babies to put the pacifier back in their mouth. I had no idea these existed and I would have LOVED this for Sparkle Pants. As you can see in the picture above she has her paci attached to a little bear that is then tucked into her blankie and that's how she goes to sleep each night. If she wants to get the binkie back in she just pushes it back in place with her arm. Done and done. Occasionally it gets stuck by her neck and she can't get it back in on her own, but overall this thing has been a lifesaver. A lifesaver I tell you!
And while she only sits up and still doesn't scoot or move on her own, she can bend all the way over and rest her head on the floor in front of her and then lift herself back up into sitting position. That girl has some serious core strength.
Finally, she's starting to say more and more words. She says mama and dada, hi, and uh-oh, as well as some animal sounds but her newest and cutest is saying thank you. She says it surprisingly clear and in can even use it in context. We didn't try to teach this to her or anything, but last week after I said thank you a few times she was sort of mimicking me and the all of the sudden it sounded clear as day--I mean it's more of a tank-doo but for a 13 month old baby that classifies as clear as day. I was pretty surprised...thank you is not a usual word among firsts for babies. But I was even more surprised when a few days later she was pointing and pointing to something and I just couldn't figure out what she wanted. Finally, I handed her the object of her desire and she says, tank-doo! all on her own with no prompting. While it caught me off guard, part of me is not surprised. I feel like she teaches us so much and and to see this budding gratitude from her at this tender age seems to be in line with her character.
While the physical milestones come a little slower, they definitely come. And I definitely want to continue to record and celebrate these little victories.
Three cheers for Lamp!