Oh Israel. This little boy is the best and hardest thing in my life. I think in the last two months since the baby has come home, we have had a lot of high highs and low lows.
His teacher sent me a few pictures from school. He is very happy there and they take lots of field trips! In March alone he's taking four field trips (to a Dance Festival, Adaptive Gym, and Bowling twice!).
Israel's walking skills have continued to improve. When we go out as a family he will want to walk around instead of just preferring to scoot on his bottom like before. He's definitely proud of himself for walking and I love that he is finally becoming motivated! He still has a long way to go with transitions in walking but he's getting better and stronger. Just this past week he would push off of a wall when he'd walk into one place, to keep going instead of just plopping to the floor after going one way.
He's also started to have more interest in coloring. Instead of just putting utensils in his mouth, he is actually doodling. One day during midwinter break he sat and colored for maybe 15 minutes, which is longer than ever before! He's also had major increases in his vocabulary. He is putting real sentences together. He also knows the words to songs and I'll hear him singing to himself in his room. He will read "Go Dogs Go" to himself and shout "DOG PARTY!" at the end with such joy.
He also enjoyed the snow day! He has sensory issues but he enjoyed being outside with 'friends" and he never had a freak out for being too cold.
He and Edith are still best friends. Yet they know how to push each other's buttons so well. Israel tries to get Edith to do his bidding. He will shout "Baby!" and name the toy he wants her to get. Edith can be a little bossy with him and say things like "Israel, you're NOT scared/ we can't have ___" and she claims 99% of the toys in the house, and Israel typically rolls with it. He still calls Edith "baby" and will sometimes call baby Annie "Annie" but it sounds like Ernie.
Israel loves his daddy most of all. He lives for the moment when Will walks through the door at night, and he can't fall asleep until daddy "Sits" next to him and sings him to sleep.
One of the biggest updates for our little guy is that he was officially given the diagnoses of Autism and ADHD. This certainly helps explain some behaviors and fixations of our little guy, and validates the sensory issues that we have seen. We've started him on some medicine for his attention span and we'll see how that goes. Getting these new diagnoses brought back flashbacks of when he was officially diagnosed with cerebral palsy. It's both a relief and a new loss.
We recently watched a documentary on Amazon called "Life, Animated" about a guy with Autism. He's in his 20s now and watching his family talk about their love for him but also the challenges was good and hard. Will and I both teared up. Will also watched this clip about a guy with cerebral palsy who said that "God made him with CP On purpose... and when I think about the phrase ON PURPOSE, how can I not worship God?"
We know that our Israel was uniquely and purposefully made. We know that God has and will continue to equip us as parents - even on the really hard days.