Today after school, as we were walking to our car, I told Janey I had a treat for her in the car. She said "Wow! What is it?" And that, my friends, was one of the best moments of my life so far. To have Janey casually say that, a totally appropriate response, in a completely "regular" tone of voice, was nothing short of a miracle to me. She has NEVER EVER said anything like that before. I don't think she's ever asked me a true question before, to say nothing of one about something that "normal" to want to know. It was fantastic. I was able to tell her special ed. teacher right away, as we were passing her, and she understood what a breakthrough it was, and said they had been working on that kind of question.
That capped off a few great days. Janey has been cheerful, talkative, just a lot of fun to be with. School is going extremely well. She seems eager to go each day, and happy when I pick her up. She is happy at afterschool, so much so the principal took pictures of how happy she was and sent them to me, which I very much appreciated! Both her teachers seem to get her, and care for her, and want her to do her best. I know enough not to take that for granted, from so many other parents I have heard from, but in my own life, that kind of teaching has been the norm, and I am very lucky for that.
I'm always unsure exactly what causes things to go well, just as I am unsure what causes them to go badly. I think a little success breeds more success. A few other moments lately have been making me think about how important even a little communication ability is. In the CVS the other day, Janey picked out a big bag of Funions (the crispy onion things) and wanted them. She was so cute with it I had to get them, although they are not really a food stable I like. But it made me think how that's the very thing of it---if she hadn't been able to get it across to me she wanted them (in this case by picking them up and handing them to me) I never would have gotten them, or realized she even liked them. She would be more subject than she already is to my guesses as to what she likes, which I am sure are often wrong. The other day, she wanted to watch Kipper on Netflix. She can say "I want Kipper" well, but not the episode she wants. Sometimes she quotes a line from the one she wants, and we guess, but more often, we put on the wrong one and she throws a fit, and we all get frustrated. This time, she said, slowly and a bit painfully as she often says new things "Head in a box". We had no clue at first---it sounded a little horror-filled. Then we looked at the little pictures that go with each episode, and one showed Arnold, Kipper's little pig friend, with his head poking out of a box---part of a magic trick Kipper does to him. It was exactly what Janey said---a head in a box. Tony and I looked at each other in amazement, and put on the episode. Who knows how long that had been the one Janey wanted to see?
It makes me happy she is learning how to ask for things she wants, but it also makes me a little sad, thinking of how often she can't, and of the many, many other kids out there that can't share what they are thinking or what they want.
A PS to this one---Tony just came over and hugged me, and Janey said "Give me a hug too!" Another amazing thing to hear.