Every day she proves to us that she CAN and WILL do whatever she sets her mind to. It's been a while since I've shared Cecily's progress publicly because as she gets older I want to ensure that we respect her privacy and her journey. We only wish to share that with hard-work, an excellent supportive team, the best teachers and therapists and lots and lots and lots and lots and lots of kisses and hugs and love ANYTHING is possible.
There are too many people in the world who are quick to put limits on our children - and we know that those guidelines and predictions are not reality and don't always have to become truths. Cecily is communicating with us every day - with her eyes, her gestures, her touch, her signs and most recently with her words. The words don't flow freely - but they are coming in bits and bytes and drips and drops and the occasional 3-4 word string. Each word, each sound is a sweet serenade. She often shouts her words - or her demands: Move, stop, No Mommy, Get off... but she is always crystal clear when she is trying to get her needs met. Today she sang along in part to the CD we played in the car. She chimed in with the words she knew and it was just a gift to everyone, not just her proud Mom and Dad. We have not done a word count lately but this week she busted out with purple hoola hoop, both ribbons, music, dance, Caleb, Nathan and most importantly Cason! There were many other words and phrases to add to the list but these stand out in my mind. When she started to say some of her friend's names I quickly turned and said, "Cecily, if you can say that ... you can most certainly say your brother's name!" She smiled and replied in a very soft voice: Cason. It was joyous... and as if on cue - this week Cason started saying Cessy!
Words aside, Cecily is just maturing. She is following directions and having conversations and making choices for herself. She is engaged in her world in a profound way and most importantly she is happy. She plays with her dolls, she draws, she dances and digs in the dirt. She is even doing so much better with her eating by mouth. We've still go so much more work to do but she will drink half of a Capri Sun in one sitting - along with some yogurt and water OR - on great days she will consume the entire drink. She is asking for water regularly and she will hold her own cup and drink from her own straw and sometimes even hold her own spoon and feed herself. While we've been doing intensive therapy with Cecily for years - this is the BEST she has ever done. Period! It has been a long hard fight - and we are far from through - but it is always nice to see some rewards shining through from the team of people committed to helping her achieve her goals. It also makes me feel better about pushing so hard... It is a challenge to keep up the fight when you feel that so many around you think you are pushing too hard al the time!
And with all of this progress we have finally entered the terrible two phase...And it appears that Cason and Cecily have made a secret pact to enter this fun zone together! Cason entered early and Cecily entered late - but together they terrorize us with tantrums and make us laugh and sometimes cry with their antics! The tantrums from Cecily are challenging and they test my
patience every day - multiple times a day - and often push me to the point of
tears... but there is no point in whining about it. On the rough days we
try and remember how hard it must be to be trapped in a body that won't let you
say or express what you want and to always be at the mercy of your
care-givers. Cason's tantrums are mild in comparison but he seems to think he can fly... or scale walls... and skateboard and do all the dangerous stuff his brother can do. So together it makes for a wild and fun day. There are no dull moments in the Ackerly house!
We are just so grateful and happy that all three of our children are thriving on their own special path. Noah remains the vigilant big brother - protecting his little siblings and cheering them on. He is a huge advocate for Cecily and she can't help but smile and love on him when he is around. Me, too! I have a new appreciation for what a unique child he is and I am so proud to be his Mommy.
We have a busy life. A calendar over-flowing with stuff. Day-jobs that keep us working late and committments that seem to dicate evBut we have a house full of love and hugs and kisses and cuddles and lots and lots of chaos. But we wouldn't have it any other way!
Onwards and upwards!