Wordfilled Wednesday – Peyton Update

It's been a while since I posted an update on how Peyton's doing, so I'm going to take a few minutes to brag about her. Each day as I watch Peyton and all the new things she's learning (and saying - yay!!!), I am just so incredibly thankful for how far she's come and how blessed we are to have her. It's a good thing no one can see me writing this because I'm already balling and I'm only in the first paragraph. :)

Anyway, this fall Peyton started her second year of ECSE preschool through the St. Michael/Albertville district. She absolutely loves school and really enjoys being with other kids. Her favorite little friend at school is a Carter - she talks about him ALL the time. I think it might be her first "crush"!! I've enjoyed getting to know Carter's mom, Stacey, and am thankful to have a friend who is also a "special needs mom". Peyton goes to school 4 afternoons a week, and on the days she doesn't have school she's begging to go. That makes Daddy proud! At school she's still receiving speech, occupational and physical therapy. All the therapists say she's doing wonderful and making great progress. We also have four private therapy appointments each week with Peyton - we have 2 speech appointments (at different places), 1 occupational therapy appointment and then 1 music therapy appointment. I think of all the appointments we have, music therapy is by far Peyton's favorite. She's a music girl!! I love hearing her sing songs and get excited to do the motions to various songs, etc.

Peyton's speech is coming along - slowly, but surely. Her vocabulary has exploded in the past 3 months. She's now saying 3 word sentences on a regular basis and you can pretty much carry on a conversation with her about how her day was, what she wants to do, etc. Many of her words are still difficult to understand, but just the fact that she's attempting to say so many new words and phrases is encouraging. It's pretty typical for apraxic kids to have speech that's not completely clear, so this may be something she has her whole life...we'll just have to wait and see. Besides her speech issues, she's pretty much a typical kid. She LOVES playing with her brother and anyone else who wants to play. Her favorite thing to do when Daddy gets home from work is "wrestle"!! :) As I mentioned before, she loves any kind of music - and she's a dance machine, too. Some evenings we just sit and are entertained by the kids dancing together - nothing like cheap entertainment, huh?

We're still working on potty training with Peyton. She "gets" it and has been wanting to do everything Carson is now that he's potty trained (for the most part), but I don't think physically she's quite ready. The apraxia affects motor planning, which includes all aspects of movement/coordination. I'm not sure she has the coordination yet mentally/physically to go on the potty at a specific moment. But we continue to keep trying! Her preschool teacher, Mrs. O, is working with her on this, too, and so is our daycare provider. So when everything finally does fall into place, Peyton will be all set! At least for now she's got her routine and she's getting support in this area from all sides.

This summer was a big one for Peyton. When she came back to school this fall the teacher and therapists said they couldn't believe she was the same kid!! Her confidence grew immensely and physically she became much stronger and learned how to do so many new things on her own. She learned how to pump on a swing, put on her shoes, pants and backpack, ride a bike, label colors correctly, climb on the playground all by herself, hop on one foot, count to five, play t-ball, do the monkey bars (with us spotting her, of course) and ride a scooter, just to name a few. The biggest change people keep commenting on is her speech improvement. Hooray for speech therapy!!

We're so thankful to all of you who have helped Peyton over the years whether you're a family friend, teacher, therapist, para, family member, etc. We can't thank you all enough for the love and support you've given us and Peyton!! Thanks especially to everyone who has been, and continues to, pray for our family! God is good and we're so excited to see where he leads up from here. We know God has amazing things planned for Peyton!

Here are a few video clips of Peyton...one of her singing her ABCs (she always starts at the beginning when her fridge toy is half way through the song - then she tries to catch up), one of her swinging, and one of her playing t-ball (notice her "little miss independent" attitude - shouting "I do!" as Daddy's trying to help her...and Carson barking out orders/directions). Enjoy!!


Sarah said...

How wonderful! And I can only imagine how weepy this made you to write!

Jo said...

That was a good update on Peyton..I'm glad she's thriving and moving along in all of her development!

PhilandTheresa said...

It has been amazing to watch the progress she has made. I feel like it was just the other day that you came to church all excited that she could say her name, and to think of how far she has come since then is amazing. Peyton is such a gift from God and He has such a special plan for her life. I really admire what a good job you and Chad do with her. I can tell you shower your kids with love- it really shows. I am lucky to have you as a friend!

Lindsey said...

What a wonderful entry! You and Chad are, without question, justifiably proud of your little girl. What incredible achievements!

Katie said...

Nice update! I'm looking forward to seeing - and HEARING! - her on Friday!

VanHoorik's Zoo said...

You brought tears to my eyes. I am so happy to see Peyton doing so well and just being so happy. She's so wonderful!

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