Joshua, our third son with some developmental delays, just started preschool at a local school for exceptional children. He goes two days a week and this was his second week. I wasn’t sure how he would adjust, but it has gone better than I could have imagined. He has adjusted really well and seems to enjoy going to school. He eats well there and also takes a nap, without his pacifier! Major deal around here! We haven’t gotten rid of the paci at home yet, but now that I know he can sleep without it, we will tackle that this summer. He has some difficulty on the days after he goes to school since he is really tired, but other than that things are going great. Since he started preschool we have noticed two really big milestones for him.
First, we were outside playing the other day and he took off his shoes and played in the yard barefoot, on mulch no less. That is HUGE for him. Last year this time, he wouldn’t even walk in the house without shoes.
The second thing was yesterday he took his Elmo doll and put it in his high chair and said, “Elmo, eat” and proceeded to “feed” Elmo. That is also really huge for us. He does not pretend, nor does he spontaneously use two words in a phrase. I know those things come naturally to most two-year olds, but when you have a three-year old who doesn’t do them and then all of a sudden begins to, its a major victory. Most parents take for granted that their children will talk and that they will pretend play. It comes naturally to most children, but for some of us, every milestone is met with sweat and tears and we are so happy he is making progress so quickly. I literally was crying telling Glenn about the Elmo incident.
Having a child with challenges just makes you stop and see the little things. I do not take little things for granted nearly as much as I used to. I am thankful for that. Joshua is not always easy to handle, he can be downright difficult, but seeing him make these little steps forward is worth all the difficulty.