As far as gross motor development goes, this past week has been AMAZING for Connor! I stand firm in my belief that wearing the helmet slowed his gross motor development (though the therapists at Cranial Tech disagree). I have witnessed a night and day difference in the things that he’s trying to do now (just 1.5 weeks since graduation) – getting into a sitting position, tall kneeling, pulling to stand, cruising from one end of the family room to the other, going from his belly to his knees and creeping/crawling – these are all skills that he would only feebly attempt before, and almost always required intervention to even show interest. Since the helmet’s come off, he’s even all over the place in his crib, and I’ve found him sitting in it once and standing in it another time (he never even attempted this while wearing his helmet). He doesn’t hold still anymore, and we’re furiously trying to keep up the pace of baby-proofing the house. Turbo Boy only needs about 8 seconds to get from one end of the family room to the other… and it’s a long room… SCARY!
In related news…
On Wednesday, we attended Connor’s FINAL NICU Follow-Up Clinic. That’s right – he GRADUATED!! :) As it turns out, the only reason we had to go back was related to gross motor development concerns (physical therapy), so as each specialist filed into the room to take a look at Connor, they all pretty much said that they didn’t need to see him… the neo was very impressed with his progress in the last 5 months, and the speech therapist felt that he was nearly on track with his chronological age (which wasn’t to be expected this early or ever, based on his IVH history). The physical therapist spent some real time with him (if 7 minutes counts)… had a few criticisms like before, but overall liked the progress he was making. I think the fact that we’re currently in private physical therapy was all she needed to hear to sign off on him, and let us move on. So, wahoo! – another set of appointments – ALL DONE.
His current stats, at 16.5 months old:
- WEIGHT: 20 lbs, 5 oz
- HEIGHT: 28.75”
- HEAD CIRC: 46.5 cm
Not thrilled about his current weight… this is what he weighed on the pediatrician’s scale 2 weeks ago. But, given how active he’s been in the last week alone, I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised. (We have him forward-facing in his car seat – because that’s the only way the behemoth contraption will fit in our car, AND it’s a convertible one – so the closer he is to the 20-lb. mark, the more nervous it makes me.) I’ve got 6 more weeks to fatten him up, before his next weight check at the pediatrician’s office!
Seeing as how we were already at the hospital anyway, we got to run into Connor’s adorable girlfriend, Natalie, and we decided to swing by the NICU to see some of our favorite friends. It was fun “showing off” our BIG little boy to the people who took such amazing care of him for so long. :)
Sometimes going to the hospital conjures up all sorts of unpleasant memories for Brian and me… waiting to be buzzed in at the door to Mother-Baby, a lot of those emotions came rushing back. They keep the NICU fairly secure, so if we want to visit old friends (primary nurses and staff), we have to congregate outside the entrance. Brian and I both agreed it was much better this way… I don’t know if I would be able to go inside or ever be able to handle hearing all of the alarms again.
Which brings me to another thing… probably on a weekly basis, if not more often, we’re asked about when we’re going to have more kids. Honestly, we don’t know what we’re going to do yet – we always intended to have 2 or 3. I know neither of us is getting any younger, but we’re not ready to make any decisions about more babies. Connor has made us feel more like a family since the day he arrived, and while he still needs the extra attention and care, it doesn’t seem fair to split our energies from him. We overcame a very painful 2.5-year struggle with infertility before conceiving Connor, and the fact that he was born so premature, automatically puts me in a high-risk category of delivering early again. And we’re not eager to revisit either situation right now. We’re definitely open to adoption, but we aren’t yet certain that we’re supposed to walk down that path. So, I guess the answer is: We don’t know. We trust the answer will come when the timing is right… but for now, we’re happy to relish every moment with our beautiful 16-month-old boy, Connor.
you all y’all have a wonderful Mother’s Day weekend!!