The First Five Years- Here and Gone…

I can’t believe my baby boy is no longer my baby boy!  He isn’t even a toddler or preschooler.  There’s something about getting past that 5 year mark that seems so grown up.  Six years! Where did the time go?!?  Bryce celebrated his sixth birthday with the family on December 2.  This is really the first year that he’s understood about birthdays and Christmas.  He knows his birthday now if you ask him, and he’s very good about telling you how old he is.  Although he still says 5 and then corrects himself to say 6.  Old habits die hard :) 
Every day he works with his therapist to decide what to tell me about his day when I pick him up from school.  She started with a script, then started giving him a choice between scripts, and now has moved on to just giving him visuals of the day and he chooses what to tell me.  Most of the sentences are in his own words, and he’s doing great about stringing the words together properly.  On his birthday he told me, “Today, I got to play on the computer, because IT’S MY BIRTHDAY!” It’s so great to see him understand what he’s saying and desire to communicate with us! His ABA therapist is just so amazing- a huge blessing!  She truly likes him and loves to work with him.  She has even offered to barter ABA for piano lessons over the summer!

The experts say that the first five years of a child’s life are critical learning years.  That is the case with a typical child, but especially with any kind of disability.  I used to be so worried that we lost so much critical time by having his diagnosis delayed for so long.  He was three before he started getting really consistent help and training.  But after seeing the amazing progress he’s made in just one semester of kindergarten, I’m not worried at all.  I know this is still a critical time, and we’re going to cram everything in that we can, but it’s not the end at all- it feels like just the beginning!