Friday, September 19, 2008

Full Steam Ahead with New Theme Song

It is good to get back to posting again after a long week of concentrating on getting out of statistics. I would rather be blogging about my son than to be doing statistics.

John continues to meet our expectations and also sometimes surprise us with his abilities. We are seeing more and more that genetics is more of a factor in defining John than Down syndrome. While we continue to see trademarks of Ds in him, they are overshadowed by the same traits and characteristics of his family. From his facial features to his discontent of being still, it doesn't take long for one to tell that he is a Hill boy. As a matter of fact, people comment on the way he looks like his siblings much more than they comment on his having Ds.

Joys family tends to be short and my family is average in height and tend to be on the smaller end of the weight scale, so all of our kids have been average of below on the growth chart. John comes in at 50th percentile on the Down syndrome growth chart for height and weight and between the 10th and 25th percentile for height and weight on the "typical" growth chart. These measurements are pretty much in line with our other kids.

We continue to work with him on head control, although we are not as intense as we have been. One reason that we are not pushing as hard is the fact that he is a very active baby on his own. He is better able to hold his head up when he is in a sitting position and on his belly which uses the muscles in the back (extensors). It is much more difficult for him to move his head from back to front which uses the muscles in the front of his neck (flexors). I don't believe that it is because he can't perform this but he probably doesn't have as much of a chance to do this. So we have been trying to give him more opportunities to do this. Also, we have chosen a workout song for him. If you remember the song entitled Hold Your Head Up from the 70's. This seems to be appropriate for him. You can listen here.

He really responds well to music. So we sing and dance to CD's which he loves. It is a wonderful feeling for me as a Dad to dance with him in my arms while we listen to a CD and he focuses on me so intently as I sing to him.

As for the gagging episodes that was discusses in the last post, they still happen but they come less frequently as long as we get all the burps up after he eats. They also seem to come when he strains which causes him to reflux. For us, since we have some control over how often these episodes occur, it is not worth using medication at this point.

1 comment:

Jeanette said...

We worked with my daughter as well on her neck muscles. It all works itself out. She is also following along the family trait lines as well. We are continually commenting on her getting "this" or "that" from both her dad and I. BTW, I agree on posting is WAY more fun than statistics.