A Rohan update

So where to begin...over the past few months I had been slowly adding to a big long update post and was just ready to publish when I did something stupid (when I thought I had the text backed up) but managed to wipe the whole thing. So here we are, back to square one.

I’m so desperate to keep this blog alive, to keep recording but sometimes I do wonder whether it’s dying its own death on its own. Self-sabotage. Maybe that’s something that’s happening to blogs in general. I mean this blog has never had a huge following but I guess it’s had a steady amount of readers who like to check in, and for me it seems like a much more permanent (aside from my most recent error!) form of recording than an Instagram post. I tend to do much shorter updates over there, but I do like being able to expand a little more but perhaps I should try and keep it to shorter sections here as to not make the task of writing a massive post too daunting and therefore taking me MONTHS to complete.

So, let’s talk about Rohan’s development, or really if you want to get technical, his gross motor skills.

I can’t remember really where he was when I last updated but suddenly it seems as though he’s really clicked with walking and wanting to be on his feet. At the beginning of the summer we were given a walking frame by his physio which, like most things with Rohan has taken a little while for him to get used to. It started ok, he was keen and liked being congratulated but we only used it for really sort tester periods at home, but he still preferred to bum shuffle about and even started crawling more often. There were moments where he frightened himself a little when it became unstable when he lent against the back of it and therefore became a little resistant to using it, but we persevered and I started to take it with us to his nursery settings to try and get him used to using it in as many environments as possible. 

I guess I should add that one of the things that changed with his walker was that I became a little more confident in taking it out with us. It's such a massive and bright obvious thing and it screams for attention, and it's not out of embarrassment but me being self conscious. I didn't want an extra thing to make us stand out or to mark us as different so it's really taken me quite a few months to build up that confidence to take it out in public. We started just by taking it to our local park where I know most of the people who go there, and therefore they know Rohan too and whilst I know that else where people would either be curious or well meaning I perhaps wasn't ready to have to have the conversation as to why he needed the walker or what it was for. I spoke a little about this on my instagram and it's so true that sometimes it's just exhausting to always have to have answers prepared, to have a little script that you default to and it just felt like another thing I needed to build up to and add. Sometimes I just dream of going out without feeling like I need to be armed with all these things, sort of just needing an invisibility cloak or a shield to just be able to blend in a little more. But then slowly things shifted and I knew we needed to incorporate Rohan's walker into our everyday to encourage him to use it more and get him used to being on his feet and walking places instead of being carried (also my back will thank me) so it became more important than any of my own hang ups.

And really since then we've not even had to have that many conversations, I've had smiles and comments of how sweet he looks from adults and innocent questions from children, and actually you know what, I'm so proud of Rohan just being able to be around and do things that other kids are doing, with his walker alongside him. I think it's great that perhaps those kids will go home and not think twice about it or the next time they see another child using one, and actually the more open and using it in public the better as the more normal it seems.

We also started to encourage him to walk with us holding his hands, which probably isn’t the best for him to practice balance, but in my head, it was getting him used to the idea of being on his feet and taking steps instead of being on his bottom, and this mixed with him using his walker has hopefully helped him build confidence with being on his feet more. He’s been pulling himself up onto furniture for a while, from kneeling then standing and then experimented with a little cruising. Now he’s fully able to cruise around furniture, and even taking little steps (whilst still holding on) between gaps. I’ve seen him take a few tentative hands off also and balance on his own for a few seconds too! All exciting stuff. He's become a master stair climbing now too, after a month or two of practicing, which I was actually surprised at how quickly he picked it up! We've now had to install a stair gate as he became so ninja like at climbing them that a few times we had no idea he'd got himself up and found him half way up the stairs! Whoops...He's not mastered going back down them yet but I guess we'll figure that one out. He also decided that he doesn't mind crawling on all fours and does a mix between that and bum shuffling, to be honest I'd rather he crawled so he didn't ruin so many pairs of trousers as they all eventually get massive holes in the bum. 

The thing is with Rohan, is that he is developing. Every day he seems to try or gain confidence in his abilities but it’s just at such a slower rate, it’s like everything is protracted or in slow motion, and it’s like viewing things through a magnifying glass. What with Theo may have taken a few weeks takes months and months with Rohan which means we notice every single detail and little change, which is amazing actually as you can really see the process it all goes through.
I feel like we’re heading in the right direction, I just hope that he continues working on his confidence in his abilities and becomes a little more daring at what he’s willing to try.

His fine motor skills are coming along pretty nicely too, he recently discovered his pointing finger and I don’t know why but I find it the cutest thing ever. He’s started to point to things a little and know taps on things like my phone with it, which means perhaps we can start playing a few more games with him like that. He’s got pretty good hand control and can pick up most objects and use a pincer grip, he can also feed himself and knows where his mouth is, he can use a spoon and fork also and is really working hard to load them himself too. 

I think it's all so promising and it seems like only a matter of time before perhaps he will take a few steps and I just can't wait for that day! It's so strange, I've had a few dreams where Rohan has taken steps, or said his first word and it all seemed so natural and normal and the feeling was so joyus. It feels weird to wake up and remember after dreams like that, like I almost have to check that it didn't happen for real. I know he'll get there in his own time but there's still a part of me that is impatient for it, I want him to suddenly one day just get it and start walking and whilst I know that's not our reality I would be lying if I wasn't impatient sometimes. I just have all these moments and pictures in my head that I can't wait for; him to toddle over to my open arms, him to walk by my side holding my hand, him to run around the park or play on the beach. I know it's all there waiting to happen, but sometimes I want it to be now.

But for now we're so proud of how far he's come!