He will be 6 years old at the end of July and as with any child, each stage of his life presents with a different challenge...just in different ways and not always age appropriate. Although, he is 6 years old, he is more on a 3 or 4 year old level for learning, communicating and ADL's (activities of daily living).
He is going to preschool (non-special needs) and has been going to the same one for about 2 years now. He has made many friends there and he names them by name and gives them hugs and they give him hugs. They miss him when he is gone and really treat him like any other child there.He is expected to act and obey just as the others or else he gets put in time-out just like the others. And John has risen to the challenge and has learned that he doesn't like time-out and he knows that he needs to obey to avoid time-out. He can count to 5 and can recognize most of the ABC's, although you have to get his attention for this to happen...and this is a lot of the challenge. His attention span isn't very long, but it is getting better as we are working with him on staying on task.
His recent achievement is keeping his underwear dry all night. He has been wearing underwear during the day for about 9 months now but just recently asked to wear underwear at night, so we were willing to let him try it but told him he had to keep them dry. It has been about 2 weeks now without any accidents. And when he needs to go in the night, he will wake up and come tell us he needs to go potty. He won't go to sit on the toilet without asking us to help him, but that will come. I'm just glad and thankful that he is potty trained.
Since he has not learned all of the ABC's or numbers, we have decided to hold him out of kindergarten and they will allow him to stay in preschool another year. We will be praying that he will be ready when he is 7, but if he's not, then we are not going to worry about it and do what is best for John. In the past 6 years, we have learned that John is on his own time schedule and his schedule or abilities cannot be sped up. This does not mean that we don't try and teach new things, but it does save us a lot of heartache from him not reaching the milestones at the age other children learn them. We have learned that he will reach that milestone eventually...and he has met every milestone thus far, just at a different speed.
Thanks for reading this blog and John's story. We love to share his story and how the Lord has protected him and blessed this family by giving us John. It hasn't been easy and I don't think anyone with a special needs child will tell you that, but if you hang in there with them you will find that they are part of the blessing that our Heavenly Father wishes to bestow upon those of us that allow them to come into our lives.