Friday, March 26, 2010

Summer plans?

6:15a was when I heard Ronin down the hall. As I walked past Nikko's room I heard him babbling to himself. I opened Ronin's door to let him out and quickly closed it even though Audrey had stirred; I had hopes she'd fall back asleep for a little longer, which she did. But Nikko started whining because I hadn't opened his door first so I came back for him, then ushered both boys through the dark living room to the mat, weaving between the truck ride-on and the ottomans. Still dark at 6:15, but darker still in the living room. It didn't entice either boy to fall back asleep since Nikko was already wide awake and babbling, and Ronin just wanted to go play. I gave up around 7:15a when Audrey woke up, and proceeded to change diapers and head to the kitchen for breakfast. Nikko got really whiny around lunchtime and asking him what he wanted wasn't garnering results. I felt bad that he couldn't tell me what he wanted, and I wasn't in the mood for a guessing game. I probably distracted him to meet a temporary need and then segued to lunch.

Maria came at 1pm for Nikko's therapy. I started by talking to her about how whiny Nikko was, and that he started a screaming phase. Then I segued into talking about the Extended School Year Program and we discussed Nikko's possible options. He should attend it, even though it's probably only a four week program. Maria suggested that Nikko remain busy throughout the summer because routine is so important for kids like him, and mentioned joining a camp through the park district. She said he could be in a regular camp and get an aide through the NWSRA. She dropped some names that I might ask her for again should I take that route. Another thing Maria mentioned was that her clients typically increase ABA hours during the summer so that there's constant interaction. She said we could go from 1.5 to 2 hours, and include a walk or outdoor activity at the end of a session. She also said that a line person like Melissa or another college student they recruit would be suitable for this, and not Maria because she'd be more expensive. This would be dependent on Melissa's schedule. Overall, I agree with Maria that Nikko should be involved with some kind of class or camp over the summer. But I have some mental roadblocks to work out regarding Ronin and Audrey, what to do with them, would they be involved in some socializing class during Nikko's school times, and how the heck would I transport everyone to where they'd need to be? I'll revisit this topic later. We left them to work and I put Ronin down for a nap. Audrey and I were in the kitchen and I could hear Nikko at one point, crying pretty loudly, but no real noise coming from Maria. It died down after a while. When they came up, Maria said they had a good session, but the crying I heard had to do with Nikko and the fruit snacks. She said he was perseverating over them, taking a long time to eat them and possibly doing it to avoid doing work. When they were gone, Nikko got angry because he knew she was holding on to more of them for later and he wanted them all now. Of course Maria didn't give in, and that's why there was crying. I had one more question for Maria before she left, and it was about summer classes. I asked what happens if I registered Nikko for a class, knowing that the class doesn't allow diapers? She said that's what the aide is for, the aide would be responsible for changing Nikko and they would know that. OH.

I debated after therapy whether or not to go make a grocery run. It was cold and windy outside, and I wanted the kids to have a change of scenery, but my mind was cluttered with thoughts of summer school and how to do a better job of planning activities for the kids. Instead, I decided that on Friday I will take the kids to lunch at the McDonald's Playplace in Schaumburg, since they've been there before, and then go to Costco afterwards. We'll come back home for a break, and then go to the in-laws for dinner. They are back from the Philippines, gone for five weeks, and are expecting everyone over for Friday dinner. That should be a full day. During snacktime I looked over at Nikko who was in the living room. He had taken the truck ride-on toy, the school bus ride-on toy, and the rocking horse ride-on toy and had lined them up in front of the bookcase. I felt a cold shiver, knowing that this was probably a result from understimulation, his resorting to stimming. It's just more evidence to me that letting him be too idle for too long will lead to regression. I felt guilty about not taking the kids anywhere after snacktime so I marvelled them with our new vacuum. The Dyson was on its last legs so the Hoover came from ABT yesterday. I had to move the mat off the rug to vacuum and when I put it back, I laid it over the edge of the couch forming a slide. The kids loved it, but it was hard to keep it from slipping off the couch. The mat took another incarnation, this time as the roof of a tent supported by two ottomans (ottomen?) piled up to support one end, the other end on the couch. Nikko seemed to like it because it was close quarters. Through all this excitement, I had forgotten to put Audrey down for a nap around 4:30 or 5. It was 5:15 and she didn't seem like stopping. I probably should have put her down to nap until 6p, but I decided to see how long she could go. Audrey kept up and didn't get super cranky, but when bathtime hit she wasn't quite as pleasant as an hour earlier. Ronin and Nikko watched Team Umizoomi while I got Audrey ready for bed. I noticed that Nikko was grunting and straining a few times today, and am wondering if he's trying to pass something big again. If he continues to strain tomorrow, then by Saturday latest I might have to help him out. I wonder if peaches are constipating him, because he's had a TON of peaches this week. I think the peaches had given him wetter diapers, but if he's backed up now then that's not the greatest sign. And we're supposed to be out and about tomorrow, while Nikko is constipated? I must be a glutton for punishment. Well, I already know that I am. But just my luck, he'll pass something big when we're out and about. Ugh!


  1. I keep on meaning to say, Melissa, that we had two serious phases of squealing with Billy, both before big language spurts.

    It seemed like once he got a sniff of communicating functionally, he was seriously annoyed that we didn't understand everything.

    We rode through them, the first by letting it be. The second by signaling our displeasure by mimicking, and then catching him off guard and re-directing.

    I know it might seem like baby boot camp, but there will be lots of free summers... given you have two smaller kids, I'd let this summer be therapy summer for Nikko (if I was you) and see what he can gain.

    Just my thoughts... you guys will totally make the right decision for you... you've got it wired now!


  2. Two phases, huh? *sigh* :) But hey, if the benefit is a language spurt, then that will be the payoff, right? Here's to bracing myself (and my backbone, and earplugs!) for some more improvements!

    Thanks for the thoughts about summer. I feel like I don't want Nikko to waste any time, but am getting crushed with the weight of two other little ones that need attention as well, to grow and flourish and explore. Tis a juggling act and my brain is getting dizzy! :P