Thursday, August 30, 2012

Colin's Surgery

I have been trying for days now to create this post, but have been having some technical difficulties with blogger and using chrome as my internet browser. I figured how to do it now I needed to use internet explorer (but that's coming with some of its own issues).

Colin had surgery on Tuesday to repair an aquired undescended testicle.  We've been addressing this issue for a few years now because it's always been retractible, and have even had a circumsicion revision since then, but the doctor discussed with us at the last visit that it would ultimately need to be reparired because of potential medical issues in leaving the testicle so high in the area. 

As always, Chris and I were nervous, but from start to finish in Colin leaving our arms and the doctor coming back to see us, was less than an hour so we were pretty lucky. 

Snuggling with Daddy in the waiting room while watching The Fresh Beat Band.

The hardest part was telling him that he couldn't have anything to eat.  He kept asking and I kept trying to saying "later".

Thank goodness for technology! It was very distracting for him to watch episodes of his favorite show ont he ipad!

He opted to NOT wear his hospital gown and decided to go in the "buff".

The doctors and nurses that came between anesthesia and the one doing the procedure were really good with him.  Bed side manner is always key with a 3 year old!

When he started waking up from the anesthesia he was thrashing and rolling around a lot, but I got in the bed with him and he fel back to sleep pretty quickly.

Surprisingly when we got home, he was pretty quick to have a bowl of ice cream!

However, he was pretty tired the rest of the day so I didn't mind the extra snuggles!

He of course had more ice cream later in the day.

...and even had some pretty good smiles to give out despite being uncomfortable.

He was a little trooper and back to his "getting into trouble" self yesterday. 

Friday, August 24, 2012


For as long as I can remember, and even before that, the beach community that we spend our summers in have field day events on Thursday mornings at 11am.  I have fond memories of participating in these as a child, so as my kids have gotten older, it's been fun for me to have them to participate as well.  

Despite the fact that there are certain physical activities that are difficult for Colin to do, we try really hard to include Colin in as many things as we can that any other "typically" developing child would participate.  I don't want Colin to EVER feel that he can't do something.  

So on our last Thursday at the beach for the summer, when the announcement was made, I brought the kids over to participate in the field day events.  Colin listened to the instructions and then walked over with his sister to the "waiting" area until it was time for his turn.

Colin loves sports so I knew that as long as he was in the mood and not tired, he would want to participate.  

Colin sat patiently on the boardwalk and waited until it was his turn to line up for the different events.

To be honest, most of the activities that the other kids Colin's age were doing, he was unable to do, right now.  However, I helped him participate so that he could.

Every time we would line up, there was a little boy who was at least a year older that would make comments to me about Colin's inabilities.  "He can't do that." "He doesn't know how." "He's not doing it right." "Are you sure he's old enough?" "He shouldn't do this if he doesn't know how."  At first I brushed off some of these comments because he was just a little boy.

I explained to the little boy that sometimes it's harder for some kids to do things than others. 

 I explained to him that although it was difficult for Colin to do some of the activities, he could do it.  I told him that sometimes we need extra help and that was ok because eventually, with help, you could do those same things all by yourself.  

Last year, I had to hold Colin's hands and hope that he would bear some weight in the running race since he wasn't walking yet and didn't even want to with assistance.

This year, he did the race running as fast as he could, all by himself (with a little encouragement from more than just me!).

My little boy may not have gotten first, but he tried as hard as he could.

He loved every minute of it.  

I will NEVER tell Colin he can't do something.  Instead, Chris and I are going to push Colin to do everything he could ever want to do.  

Because he can do whatever he sets his mind to...

Wednesday, August 22, 2012


Colin has not been himself since last Thursday and I can't quite place my finger on what's been going on.  He is mopey and whiny throughout the day, seems to be in pain at times, has had a low grade fever off and on and isn't eating much at the different meals.  On Monday I took him to the doctor and she couldn't find anything in all ENT passageways, he isn't congested, doesn't have a runny nose, no cough, no blisters, no rash, etc.  He just isn't himself.  We have narrowed it down to two possibilities including teeth (can't really look in his mouth too well) or just a virus that he has been fighting.  It's frustrating for me because there isn't much I can do to help and because I don't know what's going on.  And, because it's been 5 days now.  The weird thing is that he has stretches where he seems ok, but then is later trumped by the mopeyness again.  Summer blues? Missing the beach? I suppose those are possibilities too....

The other day we were out back and Colin asked to play basketball...

It is shaping up to be his favorite sport and he absolutely loves it.  I was impressed though when I looked over to find him "dribbling" the ball before taking a shot.

I know that when Chris plays with him he has shown him how to dribble, it's just still interesting to me to see him do things without being prompted because he just gets it.  I know he is observant and watches basketball very closely, so this shouldn't be surprising at all.

More dribbling...

...and then another shot.

I think I know what sport Colin is going to want to play!

In other news, Kailey has moved within 2.5 pounds of Colin and less than an inch shorter with a 2 year age difference.  Yikes!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Just Because...

I really don't have a post to go along with this picture, but I thought that I would offer a little explanation through the giggles...Colin put it on in order to diffuse a situation in which he was trying to rip off the tutu on Kailey.  I remembered we had another one, so I put it on him and HAD to get them to pose for a picture.  However, Colin must not like tulle because he wanted it off within a few minutes.  Made for a great picture though!!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Feeling the Need to Justify

Ever since Colin started his preschool program in April, we have noticed that Colin's speech skills are really starting to flourish.  The more practice he has with talking, the more improvement we notice with his clarity and amount of words he is saying.  We partly attribute this to the fact that Colin absolutely LOVES to sing and dance and therefore, a lot of the words he can clearly say are part of the songs he is singing (Mickey, Fresh Beat Band, Jake & the Neverland Pirates, "Call Me Maybe", and so on).  

It still surprises me today to hear him saying things to me in 2 word phrases that I didn't know he could say.  In fact, we were at the endocrinologist the other day for a checkup (yay! we can take a break from the thyroid medicine for awhile to see if he really needs them) and he was so good and comfortable with what the nurse and doctor were doing.  When the nurse was leaving the room, she said "the doctor will be right in" and Colin turns to her and says "bye nurse!".  We didn't even know he a. knew what a nurse was and b. knew the word nurse.

At home, Colin talks all of the time.  It's not that I underestimate him, but he completely takes me by surprise with what he can say when we never hear the words and then they just pop out!

However, we often find ourselves in public places where people that Colin knows (and those that he doesn't) will ask him questions that he knows the answer to and will not talk to them.  I feel the need to say things like "oh, you little stinker", "you know what .... is", "Colin, say hi to ...", "oh, he's just tired" and won't get a response.  

I feel like I need to justify his lack of talking to something that the person can say "oh, that makes sense".  Sure, Colin has speech delays and there are words that he will say that are not very clear, however, I don't want people to think that he can't say it.  I'll often ask Chris why I find it necessary to say these "justifications" for Colin when I know that he can say these words, phrases or answer questions.  

I am in a place where I am OK with the fact that Colin has Down Syndrome and that he struggles with certain skills.  However, I don't want his lack of "talking" in certain moments to overshadow the great progress that he has made.  So, I still find myself justifying his lack of talking when we are in public if it warrants it.  That's not to say he never says anything, but I suppose he has to be ready and on his terms to decide to talk in certain moments.


Now, I completely understand that these types of things happen with "typical" children too because Kailey is so shy when she meets people or hasn't seen them in awhile that she appears standoff-ish and won't look anyone in the eye.  So, I know it's a universal kid thing.  

I have been trying to get Colin saying the ABCs for awhile on video now and have several different clips, however, he often gets sidetracked when he watches himself in the video camera.  This is the best I have so far, but you can see him go off on a little tangent.  He needs guidance in saying the alphabet, but can do the majority all by himself when he isn't rushing or being silly.  I am so proud of my little boy!

And on a side note, I find it so intriguing to see a picture of Kailey and one of me at the same age.  Resemblance much?

Thursday, August 9, 2012

This Day in History

Yesterday's post had me thinking about the differences at these ages among Kailey and Colin so I decided to "look back" in time on or around this date for the past few summers....Kailey was born in March and Colin in April, so the difference in age is not too much, although it looks immense!

August 2009 - Colin's Baptism day

August 2010 - Pictures at the Bay

August 2011 - Pictures at the Bay

August 2012 - A day at the beach

August 2012 - A Day at the beach

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Colin LOVES to Dance

We have been having a lot of dance parties around here lately because Colin absolutely loves to dance.  Give the kid a beat and he will show you some moves!  In the process of uploading the video I took yesterday of Colin dancing, I started clicking on old clips that were on the video camera and came across this video of Colin at 14 months old.  Even then he loved to dance too so I figured I would add it on here as well.  It's so crazy to look back, especially because he is just a tad bit younger than Kailey now in that video and I can not believe the differences!

Enjoy my dancing machine from 2010....

....and now. My how things change!

Monday, August 6, 2012

New Down Syndrome Diagnosis

Dear New parent who may have just received a prenatal diagnosis of Down Syndrome or who may have just had a precious new baby who happens to have that extra chromosome,

I made my title of this post what I did because I was hoping that if you were searching trying to find some new information, you would stumble upon this.  

I just wanted to let you know that I was in your shoes one day over three years ago when our little boy Colin was born with Down Syndrome.  I can assure you that I have never cried as hard or as much as I did that day when I learned that he came with an extra chromosome that might alter how he learned things or grew and developed.  I wanted to know why my husband and I were the ones that had to go through something like that.  

I know how scary this diagnosis may seem to you, but I wanted to let you know that your child with Down Syndrome will be MORE than you ever expected.  Sure, there are challenges that you may encounter along the way, but that's really something we all deal with as parents of any child.  

Your child with Down Syndrome WILL do all of the things that any typical child will do, it just might take a little bit longer.  

I can remember how long I waited for Colin to sit up for the first time, and then crawl, walk, and just today, I watched my little guy run around, dance with his sister, recite the ABCs, count to 10 and ask me if I was ok when I said ouch because I had an awful run.  

I know this is something you might not have ever expected, but your child will fill you with so much love and happiness and will remind you how valuable each life really is.  

There are lots of people and information out there that might try and discourage you, but I promise you, your baby with Down syndrome will be the best gift you ever received.  If you need to, stop back here and see what else Colin is doing these days, or, you can look back at the very beginning.  There are lots of other Mommies and daddies who also share their journeys that are listed on the side of my blog.  

With Lots of Love,
A Mommy who has a little boy with Down Syndrome (a really lucky Mommy)