Did I tell you just how precious she was? She was the most affectionate child that I had ever seen! When she laughed, which was very often, you just knew that a diaper change was necessary. Big contagious belly laughs. She was not yet walking, but she could crawl like nobody's business. I would get down on the floor and crawl chase her from one end of our living room to the other and then we would just roll on the floor laughing! Within a month, she was up walking. Within a couple of months, she was beginning to talk. The talking part was a bit slower than normal and the words that came out of that precious little mouth were not pronounced the same as you might think. Yes, there was the usual "dink" for drink. One of the most unusual ones was the word that she used for hungry. Can you imagine my surprise, while we were dining out at a restaurant and my sweet little angel said, just as plainly as could be " Mommy, I HORNEY!" I am sure that everyone in the restaurant heard her. I saw many smiling faces. I hurriedly gave her some crackers!
Oh, how she loved to sing and dance! I thought this was just the cutest thing. When she was three years old, I thought I would sign her up for a ballet dance class at one of those summer recreation places. It was held in a gymnasium. I sat with all of the other mommies in the bleachers. As all of the little darlings lined up to play follow the leader, my little angel was doing her own interpretation of how it should go. All of the other parents were laughing at my child. They were pointing their fingers and laughing! I was not impressed with their behavior, especially when their own little darlings started copying the parents. They were all pointing and laughing at my baby. So when the instructor suggested that maybe this was not the class for her, I agreed. We did not need that kind of negativity.
The speech issues continued to get attention. She would pronounce the "chr" sound as a "p". Not a huge problem, unless your cousins name was Chris. He really would get angry when she would call him "piss". We had decided to get our little princess tested for learning disabilities at Scottish Rite Children's Hospital. In addition to the speech difficulties, they said that she was developmentally delayed by about 13 months. Umm....13 months is exactly how long it took for her to come into our lives. I do not think that people realize just how important those first years are to the children. She began speech therapy right away and we continued to just love, play and learn together. We were determined that our special gift from above was not disabled. We were determined that with plenty of love and prayer that all things are possible.
Next time I will tell you all about how attending public school went and the unique challenges that we faced at every turn.