August 31, 2004

Good day!!!

Ah...where to begin. These last nine days have been amazing! We arrived for Son Rise Start Up on Sunday August 22, 2004. Nick's first Start Up, me joining him for my second time around. The mountain as always welcomed us with her beauty. We walked the grounds together exploring her secrets, together, together, together. We then joined everyone for the evening registration. The energies in that room were a mixture of anticipation, fear of the unknown, excitement, and hope.

Once registered we settled into our cozy bungalo tucked away in the lush green woods and readied ourselves to meet other parents, teachers, professionals that were here to attend Start Up. Nick, (my introvert, pesamistic husband), feeling the energy & excitement greeted the first couple we were to share our lodgings with for the week with warmth, and a smile. This couple were to become our new best friends. This was our first miracle.

Each day of the Start Up, brought new beginnings for everyone there. We listened to our most wonderful, amazing teachers with enthusiam, & hope. By Wednesday our group of 69 were able to hope again, & not be afraid of embracing hope for themselves & thier children. Watching Nick blossom into this man that was for so long afraid to hope & reach out, was becoming an inspiration to others before my eyes! Thank you!

Wednesday afternoon we called home, my mom told us that Nicholas, (David's 7 yr old brother), had called her in to see what David was doing in his playroom. Alone on his matress on the floor he laid reading his book, this was not new, but this time, he was pointing to the words and attempting to sound them out! When we left, he had three sounds, mmmmmmmm, umh, eeeeeeeeee. David had lost his 75+ words and phrases when Autism set in 3 years ago. This was wonderful! We didn't actually hear him do this til later that evening. I held the phone to my ear with great anticipation as I listened to him, to my son's voice. my son had found his voice!!!!!! I heard, da, ti, th, ga ma, di, ra, ta, coming from a voice that had not changed in the least in 3 years! I held that phone with all my strength, my knuckles cramping, never wanted to let it go, to just let those beautiful sounds embrace me forever! Tearing myself away for just a second, to call Nick to the phone to hear, listen, experience. His reaction was the same, a smile as big as the sun washed over his face, also not wanting it to end, ever. My mom got back on the phone to tell us David had been playing with a car earlier & that a commercial had come on the TV, (which is now forever "broke"), he looked up from his play and said "a car"!!!!!!!! This had been his first word 3+ years ago! We wanted to immediately run home to work with him, instead we stayed to finish the classes. Here is briefly what happened when we arrived home.

David said:

August 26 - Car
August 27 - (we arrived home) - Pooh & Mom
August 28 - Two, cheese, juice, broke, dad, mommy, ball, apple juice, Stuart, (as in Little).
August 29 - Right (this after me saying pointing to a ball & he telling me right!), eight, go, nose, bye.
August 30 - David requested an apple! Ready, go, Elmo.

All of these words were said when either refering to the object, person or used when playing. For example: Gerd said, "Ready, Steady, Go", during a game, and David in the middle of the game initiated the game with the word!!!!!!

Our in-home out reach began August 29 and ended the evening of the 30th with Son Rise teacher Gerd. It was like having our own individualized mini Intensive and Start Up. We learned so much in those two days. Nick went from a quiet, apprehensive joiner to a Three E'd dad within 1 1/2 hours! I was praised through feedback on my playroom fun! And coached to put words to my feelings and actions! We wanted to kidnap Gerd!

This morning our home is quiet again, yet buzzing with energy of this new day. We have also decided to run a part time Son Rise program for Nicholas to help him through his ADHD, & ODD.

I learned that I had taken for granted a gift from David, I didn't think I would be ever do this again! He has been self initiating for a long time, I just didn't know how important that was, silly me! He has always been very independent. When thirsty he would get his cup from the fridge, when hungry he would get something to eat, when playing he would interact. This is a big door I somehow missed! I must go now as it is playtime! There is so much more I want to share and will, as for now, it's PLAYTIME! More updates soon!


Love & Peace Always!