Micah is so much fun! We’ve totally gotten used to his new smile and I almost forget what is open cleft smile looks like. I go back and look at photos to remember. Micah is full of smiles – pretty much every time we make eye contact he smiles big and warms my heart. He’s healed up pretty well. We’re supposed to be putting a silicon cream on his scar a few times a day and massaging his lip, but he fights it. I manage to get about one minute of massaging in a day. Hopefully we can increase that as his pain goes down, but I’m not convinced it’s painful for him – I think he just has other plans.
He’s walking all over now, and still into everything. I don’t think much changed once he started walking as he was a good climber before he walked and he still is now. We’re working a little more on fine motor skills now. At our speech therapists recommendation, it’s time for our little guy to color. He prefers to play with the marker lids, but that’s ok. He’s also getting pretty good at stacking small objects (like dice), but prefers to knock them over of course. He loves to get into the big kids’ Legos and take them apart, or just walk/crawl right over them (much to their delight!). And this morning he was trying to get his socks on. He stuck his two thumbs in the sock opening and was trying to get his toes inside – probably won’t be long. Not bad for a 17 month old!
We haven’t seen any more progression with speech. He started saying “Mama” right after surgery, but nothing else new since. He is understanding us better and will follow simple commands like “go get your ball (much like a dog)”, or “lets go upstairs.” Sometimes he actually obeys when we say “stop” or “no,” but more than often he looks at us, smiles and keeps going until he gets a second warning or until we’re there correcting him.
Micah is still waking every night. We give him a bottle, he settles into Keith’s comfy armpit, and he eventually goes back to sleep. We don’t usually wake up to move him back to the pack n’ play, so he wakes us between 7:30 and 8:30 in the morning. He wakes up happy in the morning and crawls over us until we finally roll out of bed. If we could get ourselves to bed before midnight, we probably wouldn’t always feel so tired.
Micah is making homeschooling more difficult than he was a month or two ago. Before he would play happily on the carpet on the other side of the room, while I sat at the table with the big two. Now he’s at my side whining to be in my arms, or on the table. He likes to play with our pencil/pen organizer in the middle of the table.
I’m back to volunteering with Love Without Boundaries. I missed my four months off. I’m in a different program now and am working with the Healing Home team, in a much smaller role than before, but I have a little one occupying much of my time. I’ll also be very involved in the April Cleft Exchange – can’t wait to share those new smiles with you!