I’m sure it goes without saying, but I want to shout it from the mountain tops: I am SO thankful for my kids. Kids? Yep… these two light up my life with their silly acts and best hugs and snuggles. You know Addie, but who you may not know is our first baby, Carter. He is a Catahoula rescue from Tennessee, where he was due to be euthanized at 6 weeks old! He came to us when he was 9 weeks and we’ve been in love with all 70 pounds of him since the day we saw him online. Don’t forget to tell those around you how much you love them, too… maybe the tickle monster or a Kong of peanut butter would say it best!
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My dwarfism tidbit of the week is actually something that came up in a forum last night, though there isn’t much printed information about it… the tongue! A lot of kids with achondroplasia have tongues that stick out- eventually (for most kids) this changes, but in the toddler years, it can be seen daily. Addie doesn’t have this particular trait, but she does have focus tongue, which leads me to this: Your tongue and stomach muscles are connected! Did you know that? When you’re working out and your tongue sticks out, it’s a related reaction. In children with dwarfism there are many other reasons, including a smaller mouth, crowding, a lower palate, and most common to achon children, low muscle tone known as hypotonia. All the ways one muscle or reaction effects another so far away (in relation to each other) is pretty cool… but can certainly be scary, especially if other children are developing differently at every turn. As long as the child is cleared by their geneticist, or specialist, there is no need to worry about the tongue sticking out!
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And my random isn’t random at all… it’s amazing, fantastic, wonderful news. It’s a brag. I cried after watching her progress just over the weekend: Addie is walking! Not cruising or walking and falling… she’s upright! She can change directions, wobble and regain her balance, pick something up while walking, get up while holding an object and has learned to climb down off our bed (which we just lowered for that precise reason!)…
ADDIE IS WALKING!!!!!
Ok… That was my celebration. My random act from some higher power who gave Addie all the tools in life she needs to succeed: determination. THIS is the milestone chart for achondroplastic children… and my sweet lady is blowing it out of the water. I prepared myself for another year of a less mobile baby- bending over, back breaking and, to be honest, a little heart wrenching to see everyone around me watch their children run while Addie just crawled. But no. That’s not for us. Standing at least 4 inches shorter than lots of her friends, Addie is right there next to them, holding her own. Somehow we went from army crawling and holding onto walls to walking, and walking fast (!), in about 3 weeks. Congratulations to my baby girl for standing on her own and taking a few steps (8/23/13) to spending her first full day walking (9/14/13)! I don’t know how we were randomly picked out of ~40,000 to be the one family for Addie, but her sheer power of self persuasion is teaching me to reach farther, push harder and achieve my goals, because there is no reason, no piece of paper or medical study or person of any knowledge, that can tell me I can’t.
Have a wonderful week, Reader!