October is Down Syndrome Awareness Month. I've noticed in honor of this month and of their children with Down Syndome many other parents have posted a list of 21 things about their kids (21 being the set of chromosomes that our children have an extra). So, here are 21 Things About our Charlie:
1. Charlie is 21 months old this October. He was born 1/8/06, 11 days before he was due.
2. We did not find out Charlie had Down Syndrome until he was 2 1/2 months old.
3. Charlie's first diagnosis when he was a baby was a moderate bi-lateral sensorineural hearing loss. We found this out when Charlie was about 6 weeks old. It was supposed to be a permanent condition, and Charlie wore hearing aids for 10 months. We believe it is a true miracle that he is no longer hearing impaired.
4. Charlie does have low muscle tone associated with Down Syndrome. Although it prevents him from progressing in his gross motor skills at the same rate as typical children, he is progressing none-the-less. He learned to sit at 8 months, to crawl at 14 months, and we're hoping walking comes soon.
5. Charlie is often shy around adults, but is NEVER shy around kids. He goes to daycare a couple hours a day on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, and is very popular. His best friend is Molly. Molly's mom says Molly talks about Charlie on the weekend.
6. Charlie only likes to drink milk. He tolerates water, and hates juice. He thinks juice is YUCK!
7. Charlie will eat anything if he sees mommy and daddy eat it, even vegetables!
8. Charlie takes medicine for acid reflux three times a day. The medicine is extremely bitter, but Charlie 'takes it like a man.'
9. Charlie has many extra-curriculars. He sees an Occupational Therapist every Tuesday at 10:30, a Speech Therapist every Tuesday at 1pm, and Speech and Language Pathologist on Wednesdays at 4pm and on Thursdays at 10:15. His infant teacher visits him on Fridays at 10am. He enjoys each of these appointments.
10. Charlie has an unique tongue. Instead of one line down the middle, Charlie has two lines down the sides. His Speech and Language Pathologist says she has never seen this before. She thinks it may be due to the tone of the muscles in his tongue. We think it is pretty cute. Especially when he sticks his tongue way out to show it off!
11. Charlie both signs and says words. Combined he has about 40 words he knows. This is more words than some of his peers at daycare have!
12. Charlie loves music. He loves to 'help' his daddy play the guitar.
13. Charlie is very flexible. Sometimes he sleeps on his tummy with his feet up by his head. Don't ask me how. It looks pretty painful to me!
14. Charlie's favorite toys are balls. He can say and signs ball, and does so when he sees anything round. He likes to throw balls and crawl after them. If Charlie is feeling naughty he throws a ball in the direction of somewhere he knows he is not supposed to go, like under the tortoise cage where he likes to mess with the timer that controls Boris' heat lamp.
15. If you are eating something, Charlie expects you will be willing to share. He will ask you for a "bite" and will sometimes even say "please" (weee).
16. Charlie wakes up every morning at 20 minutes to 6. We can sometimes get him to go back to sleep for one more hour, but most of the time he is up for the day at that point. Did I mention that mommy and daddy are NOT morning people?!!!
17. Charlie likes hugs and cuddles. We will often take a short break from whatever he is doing to come climb into our laps for a cuddle.
18. Charlie adds his own sound effects when he plays with his cars--like a true boy!
19. Charlie does not have any of the more common medical issues many children with Down Syndrome face. No heart condition, no GI tract issues, no thyroid issues, and he has a healthy immune system.
20. Sometimes Charlie wakes up on the 'wrong side of the bed' after his nap and is grouchy for the rest of the day! Humpf!
21. Charlie is going to be a big brother this coming March! We think he will be very excited to have a brother to play with at home!