I am growing up so fast!

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Amanda

Amanda's age

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God Doesn't Make Mistakes

For Amanda

Our three T21 princesses

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Happy 10th birthday Amanda!!

Amanda's morning hair wash, hugging her new toy, and two pictures  out of 100 where she actually looked at me! :) 

Miss Manda Moo is getting older, but not really growing much bigger. She is tiny! Just 38 pounds her last doctor appointment.

She is very healthy regardless of her size, she rarely gets sick, thank goodness.

Amanda spends her days moving from one activity to another, sometimes at a very rapid pace.  She rarely sits still.

She adores Signing Time video's, Barney, Disney movies, right now that means Frozen, yep, seen it over 1000 times by now,  but I will watch it 1000 more times if it brings a smile to Amanda, Kara and Meghan's faces!

Amanda loves playing with soft baby dolls and stuffed toys, she likes getting face to face with those toys and biting their noses, hugging them, licking them. She likes toys with big eyes the best! None of her baby dolls are allowed to wear clothing, she strips them nude as soon as she gets them.

Speaking of clothing, we cannot keep clothes on this girl. We have resorted to one piece swimsuits or leotards with button and zip Bermuda shorts, she wears footy pajamas  to bed and sometimes during the day. She cannot get those articles of clothing off yet.


 Complex.


That is Amanda in one word.

She craves attention and she does not care how she gets it; negative or positive is OK with her,  we try not to give her much negative attention...which can be extremely difficult to do when she is throwing furniture over or hurting her sisters. Deep breath, do not yell...

Amanda has mixed sensory issues.

She gets her feelings hurt easily.

She has the sweetest giggle.

Amanda can scream LOUD, it is a new behavior, oh, and I am not a fan.

She can duplicate many animal sounds with accuracy!

She has no expressive language, although she can say a few words consistently, she communicates through gestures.  She had a communication device that did not work for her, we are awaiting another appointment with language specialists to help pick out a new communication program for her.  She gets speech therapy once a week and has since we brought her home.

It is very challenging and disheartening not to be able to converse with Amanda. She cannot tell me with words, how she is feeling, however I have become very good at reading body language.

Amanda can eat with a spoon but prefers her hands. She likes to put her legs on the table too. She likes rubbing her hands all over her hair when she eats too.

She has the cleanest hair!

Amanda is considered severely delayed, but that label does nothing to describe how clever she is.  Her delays are from a combination of factors;  Institutionalization, Down syndrome, and Autism.

Amanda attends a virtual public school and is in the 4th grade. She has a special education teacher she has on-line sessions with 3 times a week, but mommy does the one on one teaching. Amanda is working on pre-academics.

Autism

A word I do not care for.

I am angry at autism for stealing away the life Amanda could be having.  It means people avoid her instead of getting to know her; her inappropriate behaviors make certain most parents keep their children far away from our sweet girl.  

Amanda is not unlike other children with Autism and Down syndrome, I talk to enough parents to know there are common struggles for the kids with a dual diagnosis, and for their families, who often feel very disconnected from their Down syndrome communities.  Kids with dual diagnosis are vastly different than children with only Down syndrome.

Amanda wakes up every morning at exactly the same time, she greets me with a huge hug and she giggles a sigh of contentment.

After she is out of bed,  she heads right to her chair to eat.

She eats at the same time daily. She prefers a set schedule but I feel that she is getting more adaptable to change. Her behavior used to get worse after an unplanned and off schedule outing or visit from family, it does not happen as often as it used to.

She goes to bed at the same time every night, she loves her routine!

LOVE


We love our daughter, she has been a family member for nearly 7 years. It feels like she has always been here. 

Adoption Day 2008
I think of Amanda's birth mother on her birthday and on holidays, I hope she knows that  Amanda is loved and cared for, that she is safe, healthy, and thriving.
 
 I am so grateful that we were able to adopt our sweet daughter. 

Happy Birthday Amanda!

My three little girls

My three little girls
Finally got all three to smile at once