Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Special Olympics

Last week, Stephen was able to participate in his very first Special Olympics event.  It was a program geared towards children ages 3-7, with various levels of developmental challenges.  We had SO much fun!!!!  Grandma was still here visiting (she left today) so she acted as our class photographer.  Yes, this was an activity we did with Stephen's kindergarten class!!!

The kids participated in events like an obstacle course, soccer, basketball, throwing balls at targets, bowling, and using a big parachute to bounce beach balls.  The event was held at a local high school, and there were literally HUNDREDS of middle and high school kids there volunteering, either to supervise activities, or work as "buddies" for the kids.  Those kids were amazing.

So, without further adieu, here are some pictures!!!

A couple of cool things to mention - that woman crawling under the pool noodles?  That's their teacher - she's the best.  I'm working up something to tell you all about her, because she is truly an angel on earth.  She also made the cool black shirts with stars on them for all of the kids, because she said they are her "shooting stars."  The kids sat SO patiently waiting for their ribbons - we were the second to last school called! 

Something that we don't have a picture of involves Stephen's communication.  He was starting to poop out after a couple of hours (he didn't sleep well the night before), and wanted to be picked up to snuggle.  So we went to sit down, and he used his speech program on my phone to say, "I need a break."  This was a HUGE breakthrough, as he wasn't just asking for a snack.  I've been trying to figure out how to convey a change that has happened with our little buddy... I guess the only way to describe it is that he had a big leap forward in his maturity level.  This includes his communication, interpersonal skills, and play skills.  We are really pleased.

In other news, Stephen's dentist wants to put a spacer in his mouth so that his other permanent teeth don't migrate into the "hole" as they grow in the rest of the way.  In order to do this, he will have a semi-permanent retainer put in, and the first part of this process will take place May 15.  He will be put under general anesthesia, because he has such high anxiety about the dentist, and because of his age, so we decided to do some other procedures (deep cleaning and sealants) while he is under.  Then 3 weeks later, he'll have the spacer put in.  It seems like a lot, but I know that this all could have been much, much worse, and this will keep his smile handsome in the long run.