In the past I’ve shared a good bit about our daughter and the mild special needs that she has. Since it has been a while since I’ve really blogged I wanted to do a little update on her because of the hopes of encouraging someone (even someone who never leaves a comment!) that things DO get better with time and maturity!
This year Caroline started the 3rd grade. She has a great teacher (in public school who loves Jesus… YAY GOD! He meets our needs every time!) She has made some sweet friends and she’s trying really hard in school. While math is still extremely hard she continues to work and claims that math is her favorite subject.
Her determination to try is really inspiring to those around her. We all know that math is hard, and in the 3rd grade they start multiplication. The teacher sent a note home asking parents to commit to helping our kids learn their facts and I asked Caroline what she wanted to do. “Well,” she said, “Don’t you think I need to at least try!?” Yes. I do think so sweet girl, so let’s get to it!
She continues to do Occupational Therapy and that has helped some with her ability to plan and organize her thoughts. She has also worked more on handwriting and writing this year than ever before and she’s doing much better at putting her thoughts on paper in an organized fashion.
In the last few months of 2011 we did a speech group with her where she was in speech but participated in different social situations with other kids around her age. It was GREAT! They discussed and role played manners, appropriate conversations with peers vs. adults, conversation starters and other socially appropriate areas of communication. She can still be a little socially inappropriate, but it does seem to be helping some. (There was the time we were at lunch after church with friends and saw different friends while eating. She said, “I’d RATHER be with (and named the other table of friends)!” in front of those that we were eating with. I wanted to climb under the table!!!!!!!!! Oh… so embarrassing! There is just not a built in filter and you never know what she will say!! We still have some work to do!)
One thing that I love is that she is growing to love God’s Word. Even if she can’t comprehend all that she reads in school she still LOVES to read and wants to know what the Bible says. I love this kid’s version of Jesus Calling for her. We started it on the first day of 3rd grade and pretty much use it every night.
It is really special that though there are struggles, the things of the Lord are familiar and something that she longs for. I hope she never looses that!
If you have a child with special needs I DO know the fears and the dreams that have changed for you and that child. It is not an easy road, but I want to remind you that God is ALWAYS in control. He is always at work and so NEVER stop praying. Never stop pushing for the best and never give up hope for things to get better. Sometimes it seems that things will never get easier or she will never grow and mature and then one day something improves (like getting completely dressed without DRAMA to the max!) and I think…”Oh! There is hope!” There is hope for you too! Just never give up and always seek out the best help that you can and stick with it!!
Even though she is 10 now and I expect her to do so many things on her own I do have to remember that she HAS only been on the earth for 10 years! Just 10 short years!! And I have to remember that she’s not where those that are her age are so I need to give a little grace and try to be understanding. Things are coming along, though ,and I am praising GOD for His faithful hand of mercy in our lives!