We had our very last visit with Kid's Team today. To be honest, I thought we were done...until I received a message on the phone yesterday about a 1pm appointment with them today! Yikes!
Brent was able to get home just in time and off we went to see our beloved neonatologist...and a number of specialty therapists of course.
Physical therapy took one look at Mary Louise and David when the WALKED into the back area of the office and discharged them without batting an eye. Occupational therapy played with them for a little while, went over some goals for the next few months and explained the few little tid bits they needed to achieve to be "caught up" completely by the age of 2 years. She felt good about discharging them as well.
Then came the speech therapist...she is very nice don't get me wrong - but if there is one area of concern with Mary Louise and David, it's the fact that they do not yet *really* verbalize words YET. They make TONS of noise, repeat repeat repeat, have started to mimic certain sounds, they both say "bad Chester" consistently (poor Chester) and the occasional phrase "I got that!" here and there...but they don't have really clear words...they definitely understand what we are saying. They follow commands very consistently. Anyhow, expressive speech has been their "most behind" area for quite sometime now so I was anxious for an opinion on their progress.
They did BEAUTIFULLY!!!! They were evaluated to be "speaking" at a 19 to 20 month level. Their actual age skills are considered to be "emerging" and the therapist felt that I could simply continue to work hard with them at home and "they will be just fine"!! Yeah!!
A few things the therapist suggested did surprise me a little though...I have a pet peeve about baby talk. We speak to Mary Louise and David with "normal" adult, everyday vocabulary. The only thing we've even tried to change or simplify is bottle to "baba" and they sure haven't said that yet - even though I must say it oooohh an obnoxious 100 times per day. Ok, they've said it once or twice - but I certainly don't think it was because the word was simple. Our pediatrician agrees with our approach. I do use over exaggerated tones to keep their attention, but I feel that using proper grammar and pronunciation, teaches...proper grammar and pronunciation. The therapist suggested: 1. using more "baby talk" and simplifying requests and statements to 1 word only; 2. sending the babies to a day care or mother's day out program for more interaction with peers. Be still my heart. We agonize over simple everyday outings and have sacrificed for me to stay home with them for as long as possible. Surely it's needless to say that I nixed the day care setting immediately. About the baby talking, probably not - though I will pay more attention to the things I'm telling them and simplify the wording as much as I can.
Last, but certainly not least, we saw our dear Dr. B (the neo). He was very pleasantly surprised with their progress and kept saying how good the babies look. He took a quick listen to their breathing, watched them play for a time, and gave us his wonderful blessings as he agreed to discharge us as well!! (His exact words were, "you've done a GREAT job. your babies are fine! We just need to get you (meaning me) to loosen up a bit!") Nice right?
After just over 2 hours of evaluation, Mary Louise and David were more than ready to get strapped into their car seats for the ride home. Of course they fell asleep on the way...OF COURSE THEY DID!!! since they haven't slept in ohhhhhh about a week and a half. Why not? It was only 1 hour before dinner, bath and bed time! So I woke them as I took them out of the car...of course they were both in FOUL moods. In addition to the obvious irritation of being disturbed while exhausted, they are still teething and consequently still going back and forth with stomach upset and constipation (right now, David is with constipation and Mary Louise is happily coasting through some mild stomach upset - which, considering her usual bowel habits, would mean she is pooping regularly without complaint - it's just a little on the unformed side.
**A sidenote, the doctor asked if I was still blogging or if I'd shut this thing down. I told him that I was keeping it going. He asked how long...I told him that I'd continue until the babies asked me to stop because I was embarrassing them (in truth, that may be the time I make it a private blog instead!). So, do you think the comments above would hurt my case with the teen Mary Louise and David? ha!**
Back to the story...
After failing miserably at a high chair feeding, I opted instead for a change of scene and put the kiddos in a warm bubble bath - and went back to feeding like we did "in the old days". It worked quite well actually. They finished almost all of what I brought upstairs! Then Mary Louise made (dun dun dunnnnn) the poop face...I took her out of the tub, put her on the toilet...she looked at me and laughed. I helped her to sit there for another minute or so, but nothing. I put her back in the tub, she made the face, I put her on the toilet, nothing. This happened 3 times before I put her back in the tub one last time to soap her up. She made the face and immediately followed it with a,"pffffooot!" I was a little stunned, as was she - but I checked and it was all air...
Then it happened...
With no other face or sound, a brown torpedo literally shot out of her rear and went "plop" in the water. Now really stunned and fumbling to get both babies out asap, I was too late. She was still going. I grabbed her and put her on the toilet. I scooped one of our, umm, unwanted tub guests out of the water and transferred it to the toilet. David came to the front of the tub (he had been playing quietly at the back) to see what the commotion was about.
It was as if we were playing out one of those dramatic movie scenes in which everything goes in slow motion for the pivotal snafu. I tried to grab David but lost a bit of my grip on the slippery Mary Louise. She fell in the toilet - rear first so she couldn't move at all - and began to SCREAM hysterically (I can't say that I blame her). I very quickly wrapped David in a towel and turned my attention to Mary Louise.
I took her out of the toilet - to find that she'd been, umm, smeared with "the funk". Oh. my. gosh. I cleaned her up, ran a fresh tub of water, broke out the Clorox wipes and went to town on the poor poor bathroom.
David's wheels must have started to spin sometime between poop plop and smear because just as I finished cleaning up mess #1, he decided to add a little fun of his own. Though not as exciting as his sister, by the end of it all, I'd had quite enough of the poopscapades to last for quite some time.
Oh, then Brent came home from the store to, "see how we were doing." Stinker. Pun intended.
To date: David is simultaneously cutting 4 top molars and Mary Louise is cutting 2 at the top and has 2 very questionable spots at the bottom...I don't normally ask this, but if you think about it, could you please send us a little peaceful, healing prayer for our family this week? (ha)