Jade keeps amazing me.
Her new regime of afternoons at the Child Development Centre is tiring for her, but also very stimulating. I’m hoping that she’ll be able to stay in the program for the second half of the year (after Christmas) because it will really help with the transition to attending full-day kindergarten next year.
In the meantime, I’m delighted that she has access to her therapists four days a week. Each child in the preschool program has specific development goals, and they sometimes get called out of the main group for individual assessments or one-on-one therapy sessions. Last week, the occupational therapist and physiotherapist told me they wanted to do an assessment on Jade and invited me to come.
I was so proud of Jade as they worked their way through a series of fine motor and gross motor exercises. I think she still lacks the energy of her “neurotypical” four-year-old friends, but she’s made huge gains over the summer. Her jumping skills are better (I think I can credit our friend’s trampoline for that!), her body control is better, and she’s much stronger than she was in the spring.
One of the exercises during the assessment was “the airplane game”. Jade had to wrap her legs around the therapist’s waist and then, with the therapist holding her by the hips, she had to hold her body up with her arms out like an airplane, and her head as high as possible. Not only was she able to do it, but she was able to hold it for a good 10 to 15 seconds. Both therapists exclaimed that she’d made the best airplane they’d ever seen, since most kids they work with simply flop down against the therapists’ knees. And the entire assessment was done in record time; they’d told me it would take 45 minutes to an hour, but Jade completed all the tasks in about 20 minutes.
Anyone who hasn’t seen her in a while comments on how talkative Jade has become. She’s getting very good at expressing her ideas and we’re getting to catch a glimpse of the worlds she can create with her imagination. One side effect of this is that she is sometimesjust a wee bit argumentative. She will argue with me about just about anything when she’s “in a mood”, even telling me whether or not I am cold when I am telling her the opposite.
Furthermore, Jade has developed a very strong opinion about what she will wear. She’ll often reject my choices for her, or insist on wearing a dress, or a specific t-shirt. She also combines clothing in ways that make me wince, at least until she puts them on and I realize that the combo somehow works. (Oh my, I’m already feeling like an old fuddy-duddy in these moments.)
It annoys and amuses me at the same time, to suddenly be living with this mini-teen. But I’ve seen some very similar scenes between Jade’s cousin and her aunt (hee hee!) and so I revel in the normalcy of it all.
(Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, is my grateful prayer.)
P.S. I forgot to mention that she’s now potty trained. Daytime and nighttime. I swear it was like a switch when she decided to do it. Amazing.