So we've reached 18 months of Rowieness. It's that age old quandary of not quite believing it's been a year and a half already, but at the same time how has he not always been here with us? This little boy with more sparkle and joy than a unicorns toenail, and that's saying something.
I thought that I might manage to squeeze in a little update, to try and record the way he is now. I know that it's been so quiet over here recently, but I so want to try and capture this moment in time and record all that we love about this special little boy.
Things are obviously still so different to how we thought they would be, in fact I just went back to look at some old post's of when Theo was a similar age, and how different it was. He was hurtling towards toddlerhood, whilst Rohan is very much still a baby. But compared to the beginning of the year, these past few months have just been so much better. Looking back at photos it's so hard to believe he got as poorly as he did. I guess because it was a gradual thing, him just getting hit by cold after cold slowly wearing him down. Of course I feel so guilty that perhaps we should have got help sooner, but when it's your everyday sometimes it's hard to take a step back and really see that it's not quite right. So after a shaky start to his first year on this planet, I feel like he's finally doing ok.
Last month he finally had his PDA closure, third time lucky and all went really well. He recovered quickly, and as it was only keyhole we were home by the next morning. We've not had a follow up yet but when we do it will be interesting to see how its effected the function of the heart, but so far so good. He has been hit with another cold it seems, as he's been pretty snotty once more, but fingers crossed it seems to be on its way out now. He's been cutting teeth for what seems like months too, with four at the bottom and now two making an appearance at the top.
In terms of development we're still working on the whole moving thing. His sitting has improved dramatically and we've been practising our physio daily making him more balanced and in positions where he can try and move. Whenever I have him on my lap he's wriggling and lunges or scoots his little bottom to try and get to something, so eager to move. But when you put him on the floor he's more than happy to just sit. He can roll over and over now, each way so gets himself about in that way, and is getting so much better at propping himself up on his front and supporting himself and using his arms to play. I feel like we're (hopefully!) on the brink of some sort of movement, but at the moment he just seems to get so tired when we try our physio. I think it's because his little muscles have to work twice as hard as normal (due to hypertonia and mobility) and all those normal movements just take it out of him. But nevertheless we will persevere and get there one day! I'm just happy that he seems so much more interested in his surroundings and toys. He loves picking toys up, turning them over, passing them between his hands, taking things in and out of baskets, banging toys especially his glockenspiel and anything that makes noise. He loves a good maraca and whenever he shakes it he turns to look at you to see if you're dancing. This boy also LOVES praise, so whenever he does something well we somewhat over enthusiastically say 'yey, well done!' and his little face breaks out in a massive smile.
He's getting better at communicating what he wants and doesn't want, as well as being interested in other people and children. He shakes his head, pushes things away and throws things if he doesn't want them, and will lunge and reach and grab for the things he does. He's getting better at choosing options, but more often than not the toys will end up being chucked on the floor, and he'll have a little look to see where they've gone! He makes gurgling sounds pretty much all of the time, he sounds like a little cooing dove and we ALWAYS get comments whenever we're out and about. People generally think it's a sweet noise and comment on how happy he sounds, and whilst I do love it, it is constant. It also reminds me that the noise isn't completely normal and am pretty aware that by now Theo was starting to say a few words and Rohan is nowhere near and we're not even sure how much speech he will have. It's just one of those things that we have to daily go through, and whilst the comments are always positive and it's lovely that people are so interested, I feel like I'm constantly putting on a bit of a fake smile as I guess it's still a bit of a sore point. But we'll get there.
He does love other people and children though, Theo of course being his favourite. He loves to just sit and watch Theo run around, and he loves a good bit of slapstick. If anyone is doing falling, jumping, bouncing etc he will sit in fits of giggles watching them. It really is the sweetest thing! If there are other babies near to him he will learn and reach over to them and try and grab them. I'm trying really hard to make sure he's being a bit more gentle as he is very much in the grabbing and pinching stage and it actually really hurts! (I can't really wear my hair down at the moment as it's just too painful when he pulls!) He's also obsessed with glasses and anyone who wears them as he likes to pull them off! He's just learnt how to give kisses though, and now whenever I pick him up I'm met with a big open mouth slobber on the cheek or lips. He likes to grab your head and pull you in too and its very cute. I love that he wants to show his affection! He's also a very good cuddler and will properly snuggle his head into your shoulder when you're carrying him. He likes to reach out to other people too and have them give him a cuddle. This boy is affectionate.
I just love how much more he's interacting with everyone and everything. He is obsessed with cups, glasses and bottles of water. If he spots one on the table then he'll lunge and try and grab it, so much so that he can now manage his own open cup really well and has great control when lifting it and tipping it the right amount. He still manages to dribble lots of it down his front but is so much better at drinking it and controlling it when he puts it down too. He can feed himself well too, but I think I might have to save feeding for a whole other post, as there's a lot to say.
So there we are, our little Rohan. I think it's easy to say that without a doubt the number one thing that gets commented on is how happy he is. He gives everyone winning smiles and is usually pretty contented, if not getting slightly frustrated that he can't move!
Happy 18 months Rowington, you are very loved.