Tuesday, April 10, 2012

And some days, it all just works out...

Thankfully, today was one of those day!

We all got up and going this morning about 6:30, and by 7:20 Michael left to bring Kristopher to school and Lynae with him to the church until KAD (our mom's morning out program) started.  By 8:30 I had all the other kids ready to go and was, myself, ready to get moving.  We had two sitters show up... one to stay at the house with Emma and Wesley, and the other to go with me to the dentist with me +4.

After leaving the basics of the day with our sitter at home, we hit the road before 9am... in time to grab breakfast for ME and get on the road to downtown Orlando.  We made it to the dentist sans difficulty and got in and registered.  Then, I got to start up the 4 pages of paperwork for each of the 3 kids that were about to see the dentist for the first time!  After doing this twice last week for Aleksa and Emma, it wasn't so difficult to fill out all the forms for Brianna, James, and Micah today.  I was VERY glad, already, that I'd been able to have an extra 2 hands come with me so each of the kids got a trip to the restroom before we were called back... after being in the car for an hour :).

As I finished the paperwork, we were called to the back to a room with 3 dentist chairs in it.  Hmm... ok, which ONE did they want us in??  The nurse says "one in each, are we ready?" And I must have looked at her like she's crazy as I said, "I don't think that's going to work..."  The doctor came in just then... the same doctor (different nurse) that was with me last week with Aleksa and Emma, and she said for us to all go to one end and asked who I wanted to have go first.

Brianna is the easiest going of the three, and listens pretty well, so she was the best first candidate up.  She did great!!  I stood nearby and she either listened... or just told them 'no' then listened when they insisted :).  I think the nurses may have thought they were all going to be that easy after her.

Then the same nurse that was setting up directions earlier suggesting they all go at once, pointed at James and said "Let's do Micah next."  I replied with "Ok, and started getting Micah up (since he IS who I wanted to go next!).  She said, "no, the 5 year old."  I replied with "they're both 5!"  Micah went next :).

Micah cried through the entire thing, starting with putting the brakes on when I took him from my friend's lap and put him in the chair.  He pursed his lips together as much as possible and used his strong little tongue to get the dentist as far away as possible... but in general he still did ok.  I sat at the foot of the chair... after the same nurse as earlier (there were two in the room...) protested that SHE would hold on to Micah because I was... um... (she didn't want to say pregnant??).  I waited until the doctor was there then said "I'll just sit by his feet if that's ok?" and she replied with "Just like with the girls last week?"  "Yes" "Ok" And I sat by his feet, held on to his hands, and off we went.  He struggled, pulled away, but in the end his teeth were cleaned and there weren't any problems :).

Next was James.  If you can picture trying to brush a neurotic cat's teeth... you're probably close to picturing what the experience was like for James.

I first put him in the chair and sat by his feet, then I sat him 'criss cross' and put one hand on his ankles.  Then I folded his arms and held his wrists.  Very gently, of course!  They started cleaning his teeth... and we were shocked at how great he did!  Then... they turned on the suction machine and my grip got tighter as he attempted to dislocate every single joint (he can do this... it's not like he was hurting himself...) to get FREE.  So... in an effort to not have him climb the walls so often, they opted not to use the suction machine much :D.  This was a good idea.  Even still, he would all the sudden flip out and try to stand in the chair and lean backward over the side of it all at once on several occasions and only my grip on him kept him from flying away.

We then had 2 nurses along with the dentist in there.  One holding his head, the dentist trying to work, and the second nurse holding and handing over the equipment.  And me, doing what mommies do, holding on to him and trying to keep him from going overboard with this experience :).  In reality, he actually did GREAT since he calmed down between 'episodes'.  I thought that was great!!

Before we left, the doctor made sure to mark in the boys' chart that I was to absolutely go back with them in the future.  I don't understand why most dentists have issues with parents going back with their kids.  There's really NO WAY I'd send my nonverbal kids to go in to a room where they may or may not be restrained by strangers in order for them to be able to have their teeth cleaned.  No way, no how.  Brianna... maybe.  She can talk, and she sits well, and she really wouldn't be any fuss.  The other 5 w/ Ds and CP? No way!

We were DONE at the dentist in just 90 minutes! The same amount of time it took last week for Aleksa and Emma to be finished as well. YAY!  We hit the road, got a super non-healthy lunch at McDonald's (well, chicken anyway... not SO unhealthy unless you watch those pink paste things on FaceBook...) then got back on the road by 11:45 to get home.

We got home early, in time for me to save Michael a trip home from the church to bring Lynae home from KAD, so I swung by home, picked up Kristopher's karate clothes, dropped Micah off with our one sitter so he could start on a nap, dropped off our sitter that went with me so she could have some time before she had to get to the college for her afternoon class, and headed up to the church.  On my way I realized that Brianna had gone to karate last week as well so I called Mike to see if he was planning to have her do karate this week as well.  He was, so she stayed at the church for the afternoon, Lynae came home, Mike didn't have to leave work, and when he picked Kris up after school, he wasn't going to have to come home at that time since both the little boys were home with me already (their class naps at 12, so I don't send them to prek after 11 or 11:30 if they're out in the mornings!).

Our sitter at home hung out for a while until her ride made it, and I then spent the afternoon working on a scholarship application for Kris next year.

There are enough days that things all go CRAZY, and nothing works out right... so it's always REALLY nice when days like today happen when, though busy, they all WORK!

So thankful for a day when things go right, and for the help of both of our sitters that helped it all to work out just right today too!!


  1. Brianna is doing karate? I don't have many people I feel comfortable asking... and you don't have to take the time to answer. BUT... I teach martial arts to kids. And sometimes I do get students with DS or other differences. I haven't had any problems with it and I personally don't find it awkward at all. Challenging sometimes, just trying to make it work for them, but certainly fun and engaging. I am not wondering so much about what the children themselves need, because that can't be answered in a broad way (at least not any broad way I haven't heard). But I AM wondering about what the PARENTS need. What do you and/or Michael most need and want from coaches and instructors for Brianna and the others? Is it any different than what you want or need with your kids who don't have DS or CP (though truthfully, we almost never have kids with CP come through at our martial arts school because until I took over the kids' program last year, we only had a few kids and there is another school in the area with a class specifically for kids with physical challenges). I almost feel ignorant asking, and I'm not sure I'm asking with the right words to say what I mean, but... I'd rather ask than assume.

  2. Hi Jenn, In general, I think we probably want the same that we want for our other kids. Brianna's not "in the class" yet, she's just trying it out for a few weeks and see what happens. She's REALLY enjoying it though!

    I think if anything, not necessarily expecting perfection, but expecting cooperation and improvement are something that is likely different then what one might look for for other kids. Making sure to include them is the biggest-- and not "let them off easy" but actually challenge them and spend the time to help them improve just like the others in the class.

    The last thing, is that kids w/ Ds may have other health issues, and for one thing need to have x-rays of their necks periodically to be sure the vertebrae spacing isn't too large that neck and spinal injury can occur. Tumbling and that type of thing should be watched a bit more carefully for kids w/ Ds however with screening, you can know whether the spacing is a factor for them or not.

    Brianna needs the screening, so we aren't letting her do tumbling yet :).

    If you wan to chat more, feel free to email me at MeredithCornish@Gmail.com :)