My little guy is such a little cutie pie stinker. He is only 22 months old, so we do not yet know what the future holds as far as the severity of SPD or the discovery of other diagnoses such as autism or a genetic disorder, but I am mostly excited about his future.
Just 6 months ago, he literally screamed and was terrified of anyone entering our home. If I had friends over, he was very upset and highly suspicious of their motives. If they made the mistake of looking at him, he would cry inconsolably. Out at the store, he enjoyed looking at people while relaxing in his baby sling. So many people would be drawn to this baby with big blue eyes and wild curls staring at them that they’d naturally look back, or even approach him to say hi only to be met by hysterical high pitched screams and crying. More than one shocked person apologized as they scrambled away, but it was not their fault. Bud was spinning often, touching his forehead to objects many times a day, throwing things constantly, accepting of no one but mommy, and making no sounds or words at all.
Bud started therapy 4 months ago, and he has grown so much. Bud is still a mama’s boy, but that’s OK with me. He will accept others when I am not there. My friends can stop by and after a cautionary glance to warn them not to get too close, he is fine. He likes to have control and adjust in his own time. If you do not push him, he will eventually reward you with a flirty smile or a hand on your knee as he toddles by in pursuit of fun. He still seeks input, not as frequently. His eye contact and ability to play with us rather than near us has increased greatly. He started using the sign for more, and now he says more every day, usually for food, but sometimes for being tossed around or flipped. He LOVES cars and will also say zoom when he plays with his cars. Now I know that a child who is almost 2 and says only a couple words is not much for most parents, but it is wonderful for us!
Of course new issues are bound to arise. Bud always loved going to the store with me, which surprised many therapists. He especially loved when I put him down and let him walk wherever he choose. He giggled running up and down aisles and stopped often to inspect the products that caught his eye. He’d eventually start to tear everything off the shelves and throw it, so up he’d go to ride in the cart. Last week, Bud became terrified of carts at the store. Not only will he not ride in a cart any longer, but also they cannot be anywhere near him or he will go ballistic. I thought I could hold him and push the cart, but boy was I wrong. He is around 25 pounds and it is difficult to carry him, the diaper bag, and whatever items I am to buy. Now, the only way we can shop is if I take his stroller and get only enough items that can fit in the bottom compartment of the stroller. That’s OK, we will adjust, and big shopping trips will be done sans Bud. I now know to add shopping carts to the “Top 3 things that Terrify Bud” list along with vacuums and blow dryers. Congratulations Swiffer mop, you are now only number 4.
There may be new things that scare Bud or new sensory challenges along the way, but we will deal with them as they arise. There will also be new things he learns, issues he overcomes, and ways that he will surprise us as he grows. I take delight in watching him grow into his personality, which is already showing to be inquisitive and determined, silly and clever. Am I apprehensive at times about what the future holds for my little man? Sure. But I am mostly excited.