Even though Olivia hasn't returned to school and we're not back into our regular routine, it seems like things are returning to normal- compared to how they have been the last couple of months! Santa has been a little slower this year (due to OK's blanket of snow!) so he is coming to our house tonight. Unfortunately, it's a little anti-climactic, and I hope we don't have to do this again. It's a little less exciting to put reindeer food out 5 days after the deer have already come and gone!
Ian ended up getting his cast off on Dec 14th, which was great. However, his incisions (under the cast) had come open and he had experienced a terrible reaction to some of the casting material. He was covered in a rash, and although I had prepared myself for him to look shriveled with four long partially healed incisions, I wasn't prepared for the incisions to be open or for his body to be covered in blood blisters and other red sores. We were really taken by surprise and decided to check into the hospital for the night so the nurses and doctors could monitor it. Anyway, to make a long story short we were able to go to therapy the next day and went home that night. We continued full days of therapy the rest of the week (outpatient) and went again for two days last week, then left Wed for Christmas in OK. Fortunately, we were able to divide the drive into two days and Ian (and Olivia) did great. Actually, Ian did great the entire time we were gone. We have now been released from therapy but we are doing his exercises twice a day at home, and the hospital sent us home with a smaller stander than what we had so he is in that at least an hour a day. He is really doing great though. We were able to take the ramp going into the house down, and he is taking a few steps with a lot of help. We were told it may take up to a year to get to where he was before the surgery, which was walking short distances and wheelchair the rest of the time. Hopefully, this surgery will help but it's not guaranteed to. It was primarily done to alleviate future pain. Our return appointment is in March.
Another thing that has been going on with us is Olivia's adoption. Although she has been a member of our family since February 2008, we have not been able to finalize yet. The week before Christmas, while we were doing full days of therapy for Ian, we received a letter in the mail basically saying we needed a mini home study and that someone would be coming to our house on the morning of Dec 28th- two days after we arrived home from OK and the morning after we had Christmas here. I also had documents to gather, information to provide, and doctors' physicals (for all of us) to schedule. Because of the snow, we ended up getting home the night of the 27th, and did a whirlwind house cleaning to be ready for our appointment the next morning. I think because of these things, I am already saying things have returned to normal- because compared to the past two months, they have! Next is our court appearance on Jan 11. I should have happy pictures to post!
So, all is settled (except for having Christmas in the morning!) and I am really enjoying this time home with the kids. I always do like the period between Christmas and New Years. I find it relaxing that the hubbub of Christmas is over and exciting as we anticipate the things the year ahead might bring!
One thing I know it is going to bring is Ian being home schooled. I am excited about that. He loves to be home, and I think is much happier than at school. I am not expecting miracles (but I will be praying for them) as far as what he will learn, but I am hoping he can learn some daily living skills that would make him a little more independent. I have only committed myself to this semester, and if it doesn't work for us, he can always return to his regular school next fall. His teacher and the aids are very nice, and although I'm sure they will be in some ways relieved, I know they will miss him too. However, he hasn't been in school since the first two days of November, so really they're already used to him not being there. I feel like it's my gain that he will be home with me, and hopefully it will be his too. Ask me again in a month or two though!
So. . . now it's time to think about my resolutions for the coming year and look forward to what's ahead. I'm excited and feel renewed already!
Happy New Year- Leah