A picture's worth a thousand words, right?
This may not look like much, but Aurelia just started reaching and touching things in the last two weeks. She's very tentative with her reach, she rarely looks at the things she's reaching for (this is typical of CVI), and her favorite color to reach for is yellow. These are the first steps towards exploring her world.
Sometimes I feel like our apartment looks like a physical therapy gym. We have an exercise ball, a tummy time surf board, mats, and all kids of equipment to encourage Aurelia to tolerate tummy time. As we learn more about her vision and sensory needs, we adapt to help her. For example: Aurelia gets overwhelmed when there is too much to process. If she's working on tummy time, it's hard for her to work on vision. Therefore, I never put Aurelia on her tummy on anything that's not a solid color (she prefers bright blue). I only offer her one toy that is either black and white or a solid contrasting color. And she loves tummy time on the exercise ball. She fully extends her arms, has great extension, and even laughs. Again, we're on our way towards achieving our goal!
This is where we're having the biggest strides towards goal accomplishment. After I figured out the texture, temperature and taste that Aurelia prefers, she no longer chokes on her food! We have a nice little routine that we do every time she eats, and that has helped her anticipate the spoon (which she can't always see). She's still figuring it all out, but she's figuring it out quickly. Oh, and she loves pears.
Ok, confession time. We found a loophole in the sleep goal. The actual goal states that Aurelia would sleep in her crib for 5-6 hours at a time. Two weeks ago she fell asleep in our bed and I didn't have the heart or energy to move her (this is what comes of 7 months on 2 hour increments of sleep for Mama Hawk). She slept for 7 hours. Since then, she's been sleeping in our bed for most of the night. The past few nights she's been getting up 3 times again, so I think I'm ready to transition her back to the crib. This would be the goal that seems the least attainable to me.
I feel like every week I'm amazed at how far this little lady progresses. She's doing so well at working towards her goals. She's also getting closer and closer to sitting unsupported (she loves to arch back when she's sitting up, but it's getting better). She is on track verbally with all kinds of consonants. She babbles b's, m's, d's, y's, g's, and I think I heard a p today. Joey is convinced she said "Dada" to him over skype the other day, and I'm pretty sure that will be her first word. She loves blowing raspberries and making noises with her mouth. Her specialty therapist and I did a milestone assessment for children with visual impairments and moderate disabilities yesterday and she does almost all of the 0-3, about half of the 3-6 month milestones, and even a few 6-9 month things. It's nice to look at milestones on a scale that better fits her needs and takes the CVI into account. All in all, I feel like we're making lots of forward movement.