Wednesday, February 9, 2011

katezilla: an update

I've talked here a few times about the support I get from the community. In short, awesome.

I regularly get asked, "how's kate?" so here comes my random (thankfully) post on the little monster.

Kate turned 6 in December and was diagnosed with PDD-NOS (Autism) in November.

We've now got a caretaker/nurse who comes to the house a couple of times a week to help out. We couldn't have gotten any luckier. She is awesome. Within days, we felt like we had known her forever and she has fallen in love with Kate. We couldn't ask for anything more. I'll call her CT for now on.

CT is just awesome. She has the energy we don't seem to have. It's a good thing too, she inspires us to be more like her. Of course, as she says, she gets to go home in the evening and we don't, we do want to do the most we can, be the best we can for Kate and Little Chet.

CT takes her outside every day, weather permitting. She's been working with Kate on doing somersaults. You'd think this is a basic kid function, but Kate isn't basic.

Up until very recently, Kate would bend over, put her head on the ground and one of us would grab her feet and flip her over. She sign "again" over and over and over and over and over. She loved it. Last week we had gathered in the front yard when I looked over at Kate, she had bent over put her hands and head down on the ground and rolled over, all by herself! She did this a couple of times before I barked at Kris to tape it. Like the Michigan J. Frog, she stopped doing it when the camera appeared.

We all witnessed it though. CT was bouncing off the walls. Kris and I were excited, but CT was excited. Gotta love it.

Along with CT, we've had a behavioral therapist coming in regularly. I'll call her PT.

Like CT, PT adores Kate. Although we had to wait for some time to really find help, the help we have found has been awesome. Others we have seen have been good, but there is no emotional connection, from Kate or us. We could tolerate no connection with us, but Kate won't. She demands it.

Along with behavior, she tries to help Kate with words. I can't make them out yet, but Kris can. Moms always can. There is one word she has learned though, "Up!" She'll walk up to me, "Up!" and simultaneously point towards the ceiling. Very simple, but so very cool.

I've managed to teach Kate something as well, how to get down the stairs. See, Kate still can't navigate stairs standing up, she crawls. Fast. When she gets home from school, I better not be on a call, she'll come roaring in and everyone on the phone is like "WTF is that?" "I've just been attacked by a monster, sorry." is my usual response. I have to take her back downstairs. If Kris tries to, she throws a tantrum. A giant tantrum. A gigantic giant tantrum. She has serious issues with separation...we've tried just about everything (from a behavioral approach), but it continues unabated.

Anyway, one day I decided to drag her down the stairs. You probably did something similar when you were a kid (or say, in college...), sat on your butt and slid down the stairs. We we got to the bottom of the stairs, she signed "again" over and over and over and over and over and over and over. Naturally.

A couple of weekends ago, she scampered up the stairs while I was downstairs. I could hear her complaining about 1, no one coming to get her and 2, not being able to get down. I yelled at her and told her to get down here right now. 5 minutes later, she appeared. She made it down the stairs for the first time ever. Awesome.

That's the long answer to the question, "How's Kate doing?"

The short answer is, "Awesome!"


hillbillytoad said...

Cute hat! Sorry I'm a sucker for pictures

Hope said...

Yeah Kate! Glad to hear she's getting good a CT/PT. Makes all the differences in the world!

Noons said...

Funny way of spelling "angel".
Yes, they do exist.

jpiwowar said...

Dude, that all sounds so *good*. So very glad to see you're all getting the help you need.

oraclenerd said...


CT/PT = angel: it is the justice alphabet