Its been a really long time since the last update I sent out and I figured now would be a good time with Noah turning 4 tomorrow. Four has come up so fast and I just can't believe how fast time flies with children...slow for them, but fast for us!
As most of you know, Noah became a big brother back in November and it has been a slow, but very fun process of him stepping into his role as a big brother. He loves giving Kayla kisses just before going to bed and lately it seems he wants to give her kisses at random moments through out the day. Kayla adores her big brother and she watches him intently as he plays and watches Sesame Street...she seems to really like watching Elmo right along with him.
Noah has made some pretty big strides in school this year. His progress on his walker has been amazing. He has great control of his walker and he walks around with confidence all the time now. He loves to go for walks down our street and even out to play with the kids in our neighborhood...and they seem to love having him out to play with them. In the past month his PT has started training him in using "walking sticks". I was given the opportunity to see him on them right before Easter and it really brought a tear to my eye watching him because I could just envision the potential for him once he can walk with those confidently and independently. Right now he is just learning to balance on them before actually getting to walk and his PT set a goal of him being able to use them in the class room by the end of next school year.
In speech they are working on getting Noah to use sentences when he talks, rather than just one or two word answers. He is working on "why" and "what" questions and has learned a lot about colors, numbers and the alphabet. A couple of Noah's favorite phrases as of late are: "I feel angry", which he learned from Rosita, on Sesame Street. And he also likes to say, "Your driving me nervous" which he got from mixing two different phrases he hears me say...usually, if I catch Noah playing on the stairs I tell him, "your making mommy nervous. Please come up or go down" and also (I promise this isn't something I tell my sweet lil man), "Your driving me nuts" which I tell the dog when he wont get out from under my feet (our dog tends to be a bit neurotic at times). He does say a LOT more, but I always think those two phrases are so funny to hear coming from my little mans mouth.
In OT Noah is learning how to use a "tripod" hold (how you would hold a pen) to color or write things. They are also working with him on using scissors with these really cool "loop" scissors. I am on a mission myself to find some to use with him at home this summer.
In class Noah is learning how to count things rather than just counting to ten and they are also working on teaching him how to spell his name. They have done many field trips over this past year...the dentist, the grocery store and tomorrow we will be going to the park and to dairy queen. Noah has so much fun with his friends at school and loves going 4 days a week. We have seen so much progress in Noah's development since he started school and each day we are blessed to see the miracles God has done and continues to do in his life. He has FAR surpassed what the doctors had expected from him.
Kevin and I have joined a committee at Winchester Medical Center called the NICU Parent Advisory Committee and it has been such a joy to be a support for not only the NICU staff there, but more importantly the families that are having to experience the NICU themselves. Its so much fun to see the NICU staff on a more regular basis and get to share with them all the strides Noah has made over the years. One of the things we are doing with the NICU PAC is the March of Dimes March for Babies on May 16th. We will be walking 4+ miles that day. The money we raise supports programs in our community that help moms have healthy, full-term pregnancies. And it funds research to find answers to the serious problems that threaten our babies. Since you are receiving this email from us today, then you know the story of Noah and what he's come from and even what I have experienced in my "challenging" early term pregnancies. Even in my last pregnancy with Kayla, I had to go through a lot in order to keep the pregnancy as long as I did...one day short of 37 weeks. Its loads of prayers, God's healing touch and direction that has lead us to the right doctors and care for myself and our babies, and also in big part the research and programs funded by this amazing organization that have helped our son, Noah to survive and over come the odds. I know this is a very tough economy right now and it has really hit each family on different levels, but we are asking that you prayerfully consider supporting both Kevin and I on this walk. Please come take a look at the web-page I created in honor of my son and my late nephew, Tristan to find out how to make a donation (click on link below).
Our constant prayer is for Noah to walk on his own, independent from his walker, walking sticks or holding someones hands. We also pray that in the time it takes to get to that point that his confidence grows as he uses tools such as his walker and now, the walking sticks. Please also pray for Noah as he has suffered from a stomach "problem" (for lack of better term) for the past 6+ months. We are praying that the Lord would just lead and direct us to the right doctor to figure out the problem and bring him some comfort finally to his little tummy. We are so grateful for all God has done in Noah's life and in our family. And we are so blessed to have all the people in our life that have been there to support us and lift us up in prayer and befriend us over the past few years during all these challenges we have faced.
Love and blessings to you all!