Monday, December 29, 2008

Our Story in a Nutshell

Jonathan at 7 months

How to begin?

Girl meets Boy. Girl and Boy date long distance for a year. Girl quits job at University and moves to Texas (eekk!) to be with boy. They get married. She becomes a neonatal nurse and drags him to Minnesota (ahhhh). They buy house and settle in. And, then comes Jonathan!

In many ways this is a journal about Jonathan. Born February 2007, the long-awaited-for baby was a complete blessing for us. Still is. And as he is growing and changing, so are we. This journal is meant to detail the joys and struggles we have had as Jonathan grows. Jonathan has presented us with so many life-lessons, and we are continuing to learn as we go.

Ok, I will admit it. I was ready to be done being pregnant! I mean, you can only go so long without being able to lay on your back. Or go an hour without peeing. I was huge in only the way a 5 ft 2 in woman can be with an 8 lb 4 oz baby boy in her belly. It wasn't pretty. So, we induced on my due date. And, after 12 hours of labor, 3 hours of pushing, and one vacuum, TA-DA... Jonathan Arrived!!

He was beautiful from day one. Still is. The kind of pretty that makes people in Target stop me to comment on him. And while Dan and I were completely and utterly exhausted for a full year, we have never known a love more profound than him.

When Jonathan turned one year, my paranoid-mommy-with-too-much-education came into full force. Don't get me wrong.... I was as neurotic as any new mommy. But Jonathan's communication skills were a big fat zero. No pointing, no waving, no jargon, no words. No gestures of any kind. His engagement with us was inconsistant at best. Some days he was all smiles and interaction and eye contact. Other days, it was a struggle to get him to "be" with us. Of course, my concern was the "big A". But I waited. He was still struggling to learn to walk, and I thought maybe we would see more progress after he hit that milestone. But, by 14 months he was walking (like a drunk... but walking!) and there was still zero progress in the communication department.

So, I hit the ground running. I contacted old collegues. I emailed our pediatrician. I made appointments at Children's for hearing screenings and a Developmental Pediatrician. I called my old work and made appointments with a Speech Langauge Pathologist for an evaluation. I contacted Early Intervention in our county for a screening. I was a madwoman. Alas, while many waiting lists existed, I was persistant and was able to get the initial screenings done by the time Jonathan was 16 months.

Alas, the news was not good. At 15 months Jonathan's language development was moderately to severely delayed. The Developmental Pediatrician was concerned about possible Dyspraxia. The Early Intervention professionals were concerned about Autism. I cried. And cried. And freaked out. And cried.

However, that was then. This is now. He is 22 months, still delayed, but making progress every day. We still don't have a definitative diagnosis. The Developmental Pediatrician still thinks dyspraxia. But this next year will be an important year for determining that. As time has gone on and we have worked with all the professionals (Speech Therapy, OT, Early Intervetion, etc), I feel more and more confident that... regardless of the outcome... Jonathan is far to happy and social to let this little blip in the road be that big a deal.

I will continue to use this "blog" to inform and educate others about language delays. And, I will record our journey. Hopefully you will find something in it to help or inspire! Or at least not bore you!!!



Crystal said...

Hey Pia, I'm a follower now - can't wait to read an update on you guys! This is very interesting reading on Jonathan, Ben and Cooper are almost 9 1/2 months old and have yet to do much, so I'm on a little developmental watch myself. Okay, way too long of a comment, so I'll stop now. :)

You're My Unsung Hero said...

Oh My God!!
Pretty much change the location to the other side of the world. And your son's name from Jonathon to Alexander - and POW - there we are on the page...

I've added you to our blog, I'll be keeping up with your story - I feel we'll be walking along the same path.


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