These last two weeks have left us very hopeful.
Thomas is generally feeling better, and he’s eating a ton, including foods that have caused reactions in the past year or two.
These include- eggs, zucchini, broccoli, cauliflower, and ghee! A drop of ghee made him sick for two weeks a few months ago. Now he eats it on and in everything with no issues.
James has also continued to improve! It took a little bit of time to recover from the plethora of new things we shouldn’t have given him all at once, but after a bit of a reset, he came back stronger than ever.
His cheeks are still just about clear of eczema (yay!) and the other patches on his arms and back are decreasing a little bit each day. He has also been eating much more than usual, which is so gratifying. Still limited foods on his modified GAPS diet (meat stock, chicken with ghee, avocados, homemade yogurt, bananas, blueberries), but we have nothing but time. Also can we talk about how much chicken he is eating?? He’s always refused meat, but cooking the already boiled chicken in ghee (so much ghee) has just made a world of difference for him.
The next new food is going to be a tiny bit of squash blended into the soup to see if his body can tolerate it. If it does, then we’ll see if he will accept small pieces of it that we don’t hide. 🙂
Also, a lot has happened these past two weeks in terms of behavior and progress!
- Outbursts—reduced dramatically. I would estimate about 75% reduction, especially in the last few days. And I’m guessing that many of the outbursts that he did have were because he was hungry, and we hadn’t figured out yet that he needed much more food than in the past. Transitions have been easier, he’s more flexible, and he’s more willing to try new activities. We have been lucky that he usually saves the more vocal protests for at home. He’s pretty good at holding it together in public. But I can’t tell you how life-changing it is to not always be on edge waiting for the next outburst.
- Mouthing- once again, significantly reduced. Maybe by half. In the past year or so, his mouthing has been out of control. We would walk out of a room and back in two minutes later to find him chewing on books, toys, furniture, just about anything. These past two weeks, I have barely given him his sensory necklace.
- School progress- After three weeks of vacation, James returned to school last week and had the best first day back ever. His physical therapist reported that he was understanding and following directions in school so much better. At one point, they asked him to sit in the red chair, and he responded, “no, green chair” and walked over to the green chair where a friend was sitting. They were so excited, they had the poor friend move to a different chair. So..maybe putting his own spin on the directions. But understanding and then interpreting them to his liking, for sure.
- Communication- We’ve heard more unprompted sentences these past couple of weeks, and so have his teachers! He has also been making more attempts at conversation both with us and with people outside of his family, which just warms my heart. It is my favorite.
- Gross motor- For the first time, when we were in the front yard, James took off independently and walked down the sidewalk, shouting, “let’s go!” He made it all the way to the corner. We joke that, “c’mon James!” is probably one of the most used phrases in our house. He needed no coaxing that day.
I remember one of his very wise therapists telling me when he was a few weeks old that we had to remember this was a marathon and not a sprint. My naïve, eager self half-listened at the time, but obviously remembered those words. I never thought the marathon would involve food and overall health, but thinking of it in those terms has helped a naturally impatient person to grow the patience muscle a bit more. And it has been and will continue to be worth it. God knows what we need to work on, for sure.