Finding His Voice

Here are some recent sayings from the world o’ Bean:

Quick! I have to send an email! (Dashes to computer and starts jabbing keys manically, translated from Mum’s, “I just have to send this email quickly.)

There’s not anything you can do! (You can’t make me.)

I won’t take my hands away from my nose. I won’t. (Held hands over nose with iron will during NG tube insertion.)

I have to go to my ‘pointment now.

Hi! I’m Evelin and this is my Swiffer. (He is very taken with Evelin, who cleans for us sometimes. Okay, weekly. Gav brandishes the “Fiffuh” con gusto.)

No! Don’t carry me upstairs!! (Bedtime)

Here’s my luggage. I’m going to Florida now on the plane.

I want to stay here forever. (This is said wherever he happens to be and having fun. We can never leave anywhere within 20 minutes.)

Of course the rest of the brilliant things he’s been saying elude me just now. Many of his sentences seem to begin with I don’t want to… which can be SO annoying, but I’m trying to give him choices at the moment, although it sometimes means doing things he wants to do for quite irrational reasons.

This week has been eternal. Sunday night I was happily watching the Oscars at a friend’s place when I received a text from Craig telling me that Gavin was feverish and barfing. Damn. After a brief chat and call to emerg to let them know we were coming, I left and met Craig on a street corner en route to Sick Kids. Gavin said, I not feeling well and have to go to hoffital.

The ER was mayhem, many very ill kids lolling around the waiting area. Our frequent flyer status helped us bypass the line and get into an isolation room quickly, as Gavin continued to vomit. The on-call fellow, Kevin, came to see us soon and accepted the challenge to try to get us into a room in less than seven hours. (And he came through!) We got up to 8B at 3:00 am, so it only took about three hours, which was a new record in speediness.

Obviously, it was a long night and Monday was a tiring day. I went home in the afternoon for a rest, so that I could do the night-shift. Gavin was pretty perky that day, no more fevers, but still vomiting a bit.  Our night went pretty smoothly, but Tuesday was a very LONG day in hospital. We had to get a new NG tubey in the morning. It was quite traumatic. Gavin always seems to think that he will be able to stay calm, but ends up shrieking at the top of his lungs and clapping his hands to his nose. (See above) We had to finally pin his arms and do it, but he was consoled by the treasure box afterwards.

Later in the day, one of Gavin’s lines became blocked, which meant we had to go to x-ray in what could have been naptime to check placement. Bean is an old hand at x-ray, so it didn’t pose any problems, and later we discovered that placement was fine, and were able to unblock his line with something called TPA. Phew, disaster averted.

Another drawback of this hospital stay was that we had two important appointments this week, and one of them was our neurosurgery follow-up on Monday morning with Bean’s neurosurgeon, Dr. Dirks. We have not been able to see Dr. Dirks since roughly last July, as we are always inpatient and miss our clinic appointments with him. So yet again, we had to miss it as Gavin had been up all night vomiting on the Sunday. When I tried to reschedule I was told that they are booking for MAY. Groan. He was meant to pop up to say hello but his days very quickly get filled with emergency surgeries, so we didn’t connect.

The other important appointment was Gavin’s assessment at Bloorview. (Rehab Centre) It was Wednesday at 1:00, and we had waited two months for it and wanted to make it. Thankfully, we were discharged on Wednesday morning. After the usual running around and packing, we were off and actually made it to the appointment on time. (More on this later.)

The other BIG news of this hospital stay is that Gavin no longer needs oxygen overnight! They did a sleep study on Tuesday night and he didn’t desat at all while sleeping. Hip, hip, hurray! He has yet to be cleared by “chest” though so we will wait for our appointment next week for the official word. For now he still sleeps with his “prongies” on. He has come so far, it is truly wonderful.

Our last appointment of the week was yesterday with a speech pathologist who works with Toronto Preschool Speech Services. This agency works with preschool age kids who have speech issues for a wide variety of reasons, and help them communicate better before beginning school. In the waiting room, Gavin found a toy drill and went around fixing all the chairs and furniture. He was having so much fun he didn’t want to go into the appointment. There was a slight glitch but eventually we met with a very nice woman named Pam.

Of course, the moment we went in with her, Gavin shut up completely and barely said a word. OKAY. This kid has been talking my ear off for the last two months straight. He literally never shuts up. So it was kind of amusing when she was asking me if Gavin speaks in sentences of three or four words and if I knew how many words he has. Admittedly, he has been through a lot and it wouldn’t be surprising if he was delayed in this respect. I guess he’s been given the gift/curse of the gab like his mum. There are a couple of things that I’ve been worried about with him though. He cannot pronounce s-consonant sounds like “spoon” or “smoke.” He says “foon” and “foke.” He also struggles with “th” and other consonant combinations. Sometimes he has a hard time finding his words, and gets stuck.

Anyway, he came out of his shell after eating a few Oreos (!) and cooperated with Pam, grudgingly. In the end she said that there is no concern on her part about the things he’s doing right now, but if he continues to be doing them at the age of four, then we will become concerned. It is nice to know that he is still doing as well as the majority of his peers in this area.

After our appointment Gavin insisted on staying in the waiting room playing for at least 15 minutes. When I asked him if he wanted to go, he said, No, I want to stay here forever.


3 responses to “Finding His Voice”

  1. deborah spencer

    Obviously Gavin is a clever little fellow. Despite his trauma, he continues to astound the doctors. He reminds me of his Mama at age three. So with it! Perhaps a little biased because I am his Bubby, but I know he’s not behind in any way. Do not worry, he is remarkable!

  2. Auntie Melanie

    Oh you make me laugh Erica!!! – I’m so thankful and he doesn’t have to have oxygen at night! xx

  3. Kelly

    I love his “I want to stay here forever” comments. Just divine!

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