Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Learning these little phrases

We've been in Oz now for a few weeks and Emily has had 24/7 mummy and daddy time (well, I was in the UK for her first week here). During this time, it's quite evident that she's come on leaps and bounds in certain areas of her development.

On the flight to Melbourne, she had tired of her books so we took out the in-flight magazine to look at. Always a winner with kids! We got to the menu page and Emily grabbed my finger and started pointing to various pictures for me to tell her what they are. On the facing page was an ad for watches, and an ad for coffee machines.

Somehow, over the Melbourne trip all I had to say (with or without magazine present) was "watch" and her face lit up and she attempted to say "coffee machine" which actually came out more like "cobbee machine".

On our camping trip, a similar thing happened with a Stuart Little 2 story book. We got to a page, the old point and tell happened and for the rest of the trip, we talked about "sky, whoosh, lady, waiter". Nanny Pat even got into the act and when Emily said "sky" she looked cheekily at Pat to say it in a funny voice.

Yesterday in the car as we waited to leave the campsite, Emily was babbling to herself - in that toddlerspeak that only toddlers understand - and I could clearly make out the odd line from one of her favourite books - "Hairy MacLary's Bone". She knows the book well enough to fill in the words I leave out when I recite it, but it sounded like she didn't need me at all to recite the book anymore.

Having had other kids around of similar ages while we've been on holiday, it's obvious (sometimes depressingly so) how much work Emily has to do to catch up to where she should be. There's been some good stuff happen and she's learned lots of new (arguably useless) phrases and proven that she's got a wicked retention for things. I'm just a bit concerned. As a father, I don't think that feeling ever truly goes away.

Friday, 8 April 2011

Disability allowance

A couple of months ago during a routine visit from Sheila from Portage, she raised the issue of Disability Living Allowance and whether we'd applied for it. Like any parent without a seriously disabled child (Down's syndrome, missing limbs, etc.) we didn't think we could get it. Having been told it's for any parents who go above and beyond what is considered normal to raise a child, we decided to apply for it. The worst that could happen? We're told Emily's too normal and get rejected.

It was rather bittersweet that I came home today to an envelope from the DLA to tell us that we've been accepted to receive this. I assume it's not as much as a child in a wheelchair or who needs round the clock care, but it's enough to offset speech therapy and some of the specialist things we've bought Emily to help her get over her language and speech delays.

Monday, 4 April 2011

Poop in the loo

It's a bit of a cheat, but tonight is the first time Emily actually dropped one into the loo proper.

She was bent over, as we all do sometimes, with a manic pushing look on her face. A quick check led to the affirmative that the turtle was trying to escape. As quick as you like, we ran up to the loo, dropped trou and proceeded... to wait.

A few songs later, I could see the little chocolate Hershey kiss (I KNEW there was a reason I didn't eat them!) dangling quite resolutely between cheeks and loo. A quick "shake" and the American chocolate's namesake was right where the American chocolate deserved to be.

I don't know what Emily got out of the first "I've done a poo on an actual toilet" moment. I fear not much. I praised her, like you do, but I think it's going to take a few more attempts to get her to really understand that what she did should be the norm, and taking a dump in a nappy should be the exception.