I commented many months ago, that I was looking forward to the day when I would not be aware on a monthly or sometimes even daily basis that Kenen has not always been with us ... looking forward to the day that our new normal would have become so much a part of us that we would wonder where the time has gone, and how we could have ever existed without him ... wondering if I would ever stop counting how many months he has been home.
We are still counting ....
We had our 6 month post-placement review with our social worker a couple of weeks ago, and she was amazed and pleased with all of the progress that he has made since she was with us 3 months ago. This was good to hear ... and good to be reminded of the many things that have improved. However, 3 months ago, things were more difficult that we could have imagined. So things are better ... but I am still aware of the very long road we have ahead of us.
After 6 months:
* He speaks English extremely well. Still confuses words on occassion, and asks "what's that" a lot, but he definitely speaks clearly, in full sentences and understands most of what we say (when he wants to.)
* He likes to hear himself talk, and when it is just the 2 of us home during the week, he talks and asks questions non-stop. I have to say "no more questions" ... often, as he repeats the same thing over and over.
* He has 2 friends in our neighborhood that he plays with. Even was invited to play at Cassidy's house. And invited to Enzo's birthday party. He knows what a friend is, and asks to play with them almost every day.
* He does not play well without me sitting right next to him, interacting with him. This makes it very difficult to get anything done during the week while everyone is gone. So I am working hard to teach him that his job is to play, and that Mommy has other jobs to do in the house. Though, of course, I do play with him ... often.
* He is still not eating a real variety of foods. I give him the same thing every day for lunch. 2 tortillas, black beans and sour cream. At dinner, he needs to try to eat what we are having ... though I usually still supplement with a hard boiled egg.
* He has started going to story time every week at the library. He is not shy. Calls out answers even when he doesn't know them. Though I'd say he is pretty developmentally typical compared to the rest of the group. Funny thing last week, was when kids were asked who wanted to come up and help her make the letter "M" ... he jumped up and down shouting, "me, me, me". She picked him, he boldly walked up, and then said, "What's "M""?
* He will start swimming lessons this week. He will not be afraid. I am most concerned that he will decide that he already knows how to swim and will just jump in when the teacher is not looking. He has told me more than once that he knows how to do everything.
* He is still sleeping in our room ... this does not please me ... I just need to get oldest son's room ready to receive middle son as his new roommate. Then K will have his own room where everything in it will belong to him. I think this will be very good for him. A place to call his own ... and I would like to have my room back.
* He still has trouble expressing his anger in appropriate ways, though this is getting much better. If I say yes to everything, then he is quite happy most of the time. However, that is obviously not a realistic way to live.
* He loves to play games, and does well with the rules most of the time. His favorites are Uno Attack, Candyland, and Sorry.
* He goes to Sunday School at church every week, and loves it. Sits through the grown up service afterwards and surprisingly, does quite well.
* We are visiting the pre-school that I hope he will attend next fall in a few weeks. Mommy is VERY excited for this prospect for him.
* He is still a great sleeper .... thank you, God!
Kenen's personality is intense, energetic and exhausting. We are learning to enjoy him more and more, and continuing to grow in love for him.