Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Fall Wonderful Fall!!

Butterfly Princess & Buzz Lightyear

Getting our first Doughnut

We love fall around here (see Noah's blog pics at Laurel has had her first doughnut at Krispy Kreme (loved it!), been to the Fair, a Horse Show and dressed up for Halloween. I'd say that officially makes her an American child! She's adjusting wonderfully although as with any other child we do have our days!!
I wanted to share a bit on the progress that she's making. When Laurel came to us as with most children in orphanages, she had a few institutional behaviors. These included getting up on her knees and rocking when she was upset or to fall asleep. Also, she would completely have a full blown meltdown and smack Noah if he came around me or sat in my lap. Finally, she would feed herself, never allow you to feed her and when finished clean herself up. I know that sounds wonderful to most people but she learned this out of necessity and we wanted to regress her in some ways to help her attach to us as caregivers and bond.
We started to work on the "rocking" behavior by rocking her for a few minutes each night (as long as she let us) and then put her to bed. Six weeks later the "rocking" has completely stopped-even when she gets upset! The down side is that when she wakes up sometimes in the night she cries and wants us to put her back to sleep but I see this as a HUGE postive. She actually NEEDS us and Wants us!!
As to the aggression towards Noah, that has scaled way back. They are playing together and after nap, her favorite thing to do is go hug her brother and rub his head. Definately progress meaning she feels more secure.
Now to the food issue. Her gorging has stopped-she is realizing that food won't go away. She still likes to do it herself (which we still encourage) but will now allow me to feed her some. Also, she "asks" for help in cleaning herself and plate up now.
I am so proud of this little girl. She is as tough as nails but Oh so sweet. She has a fighters spirit and I love that about her.
As to what's next in the way of medicals. We had a third hearing test on Friday. Laurel actually semi cooperated and we got a reading on her. From what they could tell, her hearing loss is in the Moderate/Severe Range. She is not hearing speech levels which is a problem. We go back to UNC on Tuesday for an evaluation by the ENT, schedule and MRI and do another hearing test. If they can get a reading then we could possibly schedule her to try hearing aids and see if that will help her hear some speech. With Auditory Neuropathy it is a "try and see" method with most things. If the hearing aids do not work then the MRI will tell us if she has an intact Cochlear Nerve to see if Cochlear Implants are an option for her. We truly appreciate your prayers as we still journey to help Laurel hear.

1 comment:

  1. Hey Martha, I am sorry it has been so long since I went on your blog, please forgive me. I am so thrilled to hear about Laurel's progress (and when I saw Serge this week I told him you said Hello!). It was interesting to read about Laurel's eating... we've commented on how Maria "loves to eat"...she can stuff food in her mouth on and on! I watched her this week stuff one grape in her mouth after another and laughed to myself...these kids are 2-3 and are being fed grapes right off the stem, and me at home is still cutting grapes in half for my kids who are more than twice her age! :)) But perhaps it is like you said...she thinks she has to hurry up and eat before the food runs out.
    I am praying for the Dec 1 appt. That happens to also be Maria's first doctor appt when she gets back to the States, with our pediatrician. I will definitely be thinking of you...also my oldest son's birthday. I am looking forward to reading how your appt goes, and how Laurel does with the hearing aids!
    Hugs to you!!
    Michele :)