Because we were able to spend so much concentrated time with the Bird, we were really able to see how much progress she's making lately.
Here's a couple of examples:
- Lily surprised us by unwrapping one gift without any help at all. Of course, she had more than one wrapped gift but hey, it's a start!
- She rediscovered the trampoline and really enjoyed some good time bouncing in the backyard.
- She had lots of moments of calm, "chill out time"when she was perfectly content to just lay beside us in the bed or watch TV with us. (this is not normal for her!)
- She even fell asleep on my dad's lap one night (a highly unusual event) and I think this might have been his best Christmas gift.
- We have taken lots of walks on the Town Lake Hike & Bike Trail but this week, Lily finally noticed the ducks. She took great delight in feeding them several times when we were out walking and it was fun to watch her taking it all in.
Of course, we still had moments when autism, and all that entails, reared its ugly head.
On Christmas Day, we went over to my in-laws for dinner. My parents were there. So was Ryan's sister, her husband, and their son. Of course, my in-laws were there and so were we.
Twelve people in all. Not too many. And only two little kids, Lily being one of them.
Lily was doing fine until we sat down to open gifts before eating.
After about five minutes, she was done and ready to move on to something else. We let her have the iPad so we could finish watching each other open gifts.
That worked for another ten minutes or so then she was ready to head back home.
She started pulling us to the front door.
We started trying to distract.
Now my mother-in-law has her table beautifully set so that all of us can sit and eat together.
Nice idea but it just wasn't going to work this year.
Reagan and I ended up taking our dinner plates and Lily upstairs to the gameroom, where it was nice and quiet and looked the same as it always does. Lily crawled in her favorite comfy chair with the iPad while Reagan and I ate and softly chatted. In a little while, Lily had regrouped and was ready to eat, which she also did upstairs.
After about thirty minutes, Lily went to the baby gate and motioned for me to open it. Then she went downstairs and rejoined the group like nothing at all had happened.
As for the big girls, we never let them come downstairs on Christmas morning until we are awake and up and have cameras at the ready. You can tell how thrilled Reagan is about this, even though she's been doing it for fifteen years...
But she did recover enough to take on her Dad in a little Just Dance 3.
So. Did we have some lows over the break?
But did we have some really wonderful highs, too?
And it's those really wonderful highs that get us through those lows.