Breaking news!! We found out last night that…Selena is a student of the month!!!!! We are so, so, so proud of her!! She has come SO FAR with her new school, but I’m still shocked. Is this the same little girl who was getting suspended? Environment is KEY for children with ASD and this proves it! (For me at least) Horray!! The ceremony is in a few Mondays time!! THAT should be interesting.
On Sunday, we saw one of the cutest things. Hope was upset (long story, but it involves fake homemade Rapunzel hair extensions) and while she was trying to talk to us, Selena scooted over and did one of the most thoughtful things. She wrapped her arms around Hope, stroked her arm and said, “It’s ok.” as she laid her head on Hope’s shoulder. I am thrilled that she is so emotionally in tune with verbal cues. I am hoping that she will pick up more on nonverbal cues and body language. Since Selena has gotten older (when she’s in the right mood) she is hands on when it comes to hugs, being held and (in the right company) kisses. Lately, whenever I get done doing something for her (making a snack, turning on her movie, etc) she will have me bend over so she can kiss my cheek. I’m pretty sure she does that because she sees me kiss Daddy on the cheek after he cleans up or cooks for us…or anything else that is sweet & thoughtful. I am glad that we have been able to mold these challenging behaviors into a positive learning tool for her. One of my larger concerns is this. Does she actually comprehend the reactions she’s been taught? I suppose we’ll find out with time. Repetition is so important for children like Selena. If you do it once a certain way, you better do it the same way everytime so they can not only learn the actions involved, but also so they can (hopefully) gain a better insight on why it’s happening and comprehend it a bit better. Unfortunately, that also has an adverse affect at times. I made the mistake of pretending her feet smelled when we took her shoes off. So now, everytime we take her shoes off, she has to smell her toes and say, “Ewwww, stinky.” Cute, right? Wrong. After I realized that this display has become such a staple to the routine that I quit playing along. Meltdown city was upon us and it took a long time for her to not freak out when I didn’t sniff ’em. Don’t give up and don’t give in! That sounds rough but it’s the truth. Everytime she would meltdown because of it, I would try to calm her down. But when that doesn’t work, I make sure she’s safe and then actively ignore her so that she isn’t receiving attention for her negative actions. So, needless to say, she will still sniff her feet when she takes off her shoes, but doesn’t force it on me.
(Insert awesome paragraph that my phone ate and spit out a nice Forceclosed message in return) GRRRRRR so aggrevating!! Let me see if I can piece it back together. Nope, gone forever. Ah well. Let us move on.
Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday came and gone in such a hurry. But I do know this! Since Selena has been around Emma & Hope more often, she has been wanting us to play with her, or at least be in the same room as her at least 1 day out of the week. That’s so awesome! Also, our mornings aren’t such a disaster, this week anyway! Now, I don’t even say anything after I set her down in front of the toilet, she pulls her pants down fine now! Her routine in the morning has molded around my work habits (I’m a C.N.A.) so it’s going to take her some time to get used to getting off the pot to put her shoes on. Psst…back on track Julia. She puts on her socks all by herself now too!! These little accomplishments keep me optimistic for tomorrow! I am cheering for this week knowing that it will probably be scream city for her next week. We are wrestling these issues one day at a time. I’ve been trying harder to keep in mind that with Selena, tomorrow will be an all new adventure, who knows what’ll happen!
New behaviors: Frowning (disgruntled face) when asked questions, when she’s looking off or when it appears she’s thinking about something and she’s tip-toeing more lately.
I’m going to shove off. My brain hurts.
(If you’ve seen or remember me saying any other new behaviors, let me know, I’ll update it)