J has been very angry and has lost some of his signs. I suppose you'd call this "regression," but I think it's more that his mom hasn't been picking him up and carrying him about. I'm surprised at the number of forced snuggles the kid must have gone through in his lifetime, because of all the times in the day I *know* I would have just ignored his whiny protests, lifted the kid and smooched 'im.
I'm starting to see, now that I CAN'T lift him, that the interaction I've had with him before has usually been me chasing him down and finding something to *make* him attend to. Here's a book. You ARE sitting on Momma's lap and we are reading. (Usually this works, when you hold him tight enough and deal with a little "protest.") Here is your drink and food. You ARE going to sign. Do you want drink? Sign "drink." There you go.
Now that it is not possible for me to chase him down, lift and carry all the time, I worry more for him. Even mealtimes are much harder. He can be buckled into his booster, but if he gets upset enough he CAN topple himself. If he gets too upset, you need to decide whether to just give the kid what he wants or make him leave the table hungry. Either way, long-term he loses.
And where before, I'd be rolling him around and giving him octopus noogies and he'd still bang his head on occasion... well, now he does it much more frequently. He has bitten a chunk on his tongue. He has bruised his legs jumping off the couch constantly despite Patrick's best intervention. Our therapists would call this "seeking sensory input," but of course us old folks would call it "acting like a barbarian."
I have spoken to our services coordinator for First Steps and she's so great. I now am going to have the "play therapist" coming out once a week as well as the speech therapist. These things had to be put on hold as D is not comfortable having charge of all the children, food, cleaning AND therapies. He has limits. My limits are just a bit different.
I have moved (with of course, Patrick doing the lifting and carrying!!) J's bed upstairs and he will sleep in what used to be S/girly's room with D 'till he's a bit older. Girly will be in the master bedroom with me. So D and I can't share a room yet, but at least we're on the same floor.
I would feel very guilty about J "regressing" except for the fact that S has not. She is making some distinct vowel sounds now. She looks at people and can tell "family" and "not family." Woodjie has a preference for Patrick right now because Patrick lifts him, but he has never NEVER protested at being left at church nursery like S.
The very good news is that J's speech therapies start again tomorrow. The OT comes on Thursday and the play therapist on Friday. Hopefully we will help convince J that things are "OK." He has only in the last few days been a bit less angry with me for not picking him up, and will very occasionally crawl into my lap for a game I call "push-push" where I rub him with a pillow as the OT therapist showed me. That is supposed to decrease his "sensory seeking behaviour" (banging his head and giving himself carpet burn) and he seems to like it. Plus he's so soft and cuddly and I can sneak a little kiss in sometimes. Aww.