Saturday, September 10, 2011

Aurelia's First {Play} Date

We knew that little smile would cause us trouble.  We knew she'd cause some heartaches.  After all, she already has several grown men wrapped around her tiny little finger:

Six day old Aurelia being held by Nono for the 1st time
Walt Tehan singing her Irish lullabies
Uncle Juan
Uncle Paul
Uncle Ben, it was hard to pick a picture of Ben and Aurelia because they are all TOO precious
And Papaw
Even Cousin Jaron slows down enough to ask, "Can I kiss her?"

Although there is one guy who is definitely number one in her heart:

And she's had play dates with kiddos her age:

Deklan, Aurelia and Padraig
Aurelia has the gross motor skills of a 6 month old, not a 1 year old.  This makes playing with other kids her age difficult.  Social interaction is such an important part of development.  Aurelia has a hard time keeping up with kids her age, especially now that they are all crawling and walking around her.  Playing with Cousin Padraig usually consists of toy grabbing and vision loss.  Padraig usually tries to show her how to play with the toy.  He has good intentions.  We've found that the best Padraig and Aurelia play activity is supervised swinging.

We thought we had a little time before we had to worry about that sweet little smile winning any hearts her age.  But then she met Owen:

Um, I think Owen is totally checking her out.
Owen is my dear friend Bethany's son.  They live in North Carolina.  Despite hurricanes and busy schedules, we were determined to spend some time together.  Owen was born at 26 weeks.  He is now 14 months old, thriving, and at around the same developmental stage as Aurelia.  And Beth and I had no idea how much our special little kids would like each other.  Aurelia has never responded to another baby they way she did to Owen.  And the feelings were definitely mutual.  It was almost like they knew, "Hey, you get me."  Both of these babies are NICU graduates.  Both have been through a lot of pokes and prods, tests and scans.  And both of these babies continue to exceed their doctor's expectations.   

There were a thousand precious moments like this one.

We hoped that they would be able to teach each other a thing or two.  While Aurelia still struggles with rolling over and being on her tummy, Owen struggles with speech.  Aurelia has always been very vocal (although she hasn't said any words yet).  And Owen loves tummy time and rolling over.

Owen demonstrated rolling over, and we had to tell them to keep it rated G.  

It was also great for Bethany and I to compare some mom notes.  Our two little ones do so many of the same things.  We felt encouraged to know that someone else is on a similar track.  And we were able to talk about a lot of the processing we've gone through as parents of such special kids.  

Needless to say, our little ones hit it off quite well.  And I can't tell you how neat it was to see Aurelia and Owen play with each other.  It's hard that her new little friend lives so far away, but I know we'll make a point of getting them together as often as we're able.  


Erika said...

That is about hte cutest thing I have seen on the web. What a special connection! How beautiful it is when they connect to other babies!

Anonymous said...

Precious times, there will be plenty more up ahead!