Jello, Spiders, Weddings, Zombies, and other Fairy tales.

Yes, zombies and  fairy tales.  A has finally decided that stories are a necessary part of her nightly routine.  Truth be told I never thought she would sit for a story once let alone several nights in a row so I’m ecstatic.  The zombie part is just how my week has been.  Even though we have ironed out the bedtime routine, removed stuffed buddies from her bed, and tweaked other issues, A still only slept all the way through the night twice in the past week.  This means that I am running on caffeine and caffeine!  So consider yourselves warned, things could get a bit strange!

So, I have still been attempting to add foods to A’s diet without much luck.  She still cries and throws her sandwich off her plate since the egg salad debacle, so those are on the back burner for now.  But I have learned that A has developed a strong affinity for Jell-O.  Bizarre, right?  Think about it, a child who is orally defensive and strongly dislikes any kind of smooth, squishy, or remotely slimy type texture, loving Jell-O!  Specifically, purple grape Jell-O but she’ll eat others if she has no other choice.  Still hates pudding, but loves her Jell-O!  Sadly, I only had 1 box of purple so she is having to live with red for right now, but at least it’s not yellow!  (Never give her any food that is yellow…it requires too much clean up!)  Still, someone needs to invent a Jell-O maker machine…just to make my life easier.  You know, something that has both boiling hot water and chilled water and mixes them with the Jell-O mix then dispenses it into little serving size containers you can put in your fridge and doesn’t require much clean-up.  I would buy that.

Moving on…A loves to be outside.  In her mind there is nothing better than spending the day rambling around the backyard, so I had the brilliant notion that maybe she would eat more if she were outside!  Sounds fabulous!  Put child a kiddie-sized picnic table outdoors, present with new food, and HEY!  she’ll take a bite or even eat all of it!  Right?  What could go wrong?  Oh yeah, let’s start with everything.  Don’t get me wrong, once I removed the small, offensive bit of burger (homemade mind you) from her plate and wiped off the baked bean residue things were great!  She ate her Jell-O and yogurt and nibbled on here graham crackers and was so happy she tried to pet a spider.  Yes, a spider.  Thankfully it was only a smallish spiny orb weaver, but still, who pets a spider?  (Besides my child) If you’ve never heard of a spiny orb weaver, it looks like a very, very small crab without pincers.  They are really common around here and are basically harmless unless you happen to be a mosquito, fly, or other small insect.  I don’t mind her love of Nature and all things in it, some days I just wish she was as brave at trying new foods as she is about petting animals, both bizarre and normal. 

I think our biggest triumph so far was this weekend.  She didn’t eat anything new or different, she just ate while we were out, in an unfamiliar place with lots of people, lights, and noise.  We went to a wedding and actually were able to stay for the whole thing.  Usually, A doesn’t handle loud noise, lots of people, and strange surroundings well at all.  Think fall down screaming kind of not handle well.  Amazingly though she not only made it through the reception, she had fun.  I’m sure a lot had to do with having her brother there, but she sat in her seat and ate the food I brought for her (wouldn’t touch anything there, even the crackers).  Then, she followed her brother and the other kids out onto the dance floor and “danced” with them.  It was amazing to watch my little girl who, six months ago would have been a complete wreck, interact with children she had just met, not only tolerate the loud music, but dance to it, and allow people she hadn’t seen since she was an infant pick her up and hold her.  It was so amazing to see and we were completely blown away and beyond ecstatic at the same time.  It was fantastic.  I know, I’m repeating myself, but can you blame me?

All in all it has been a long, tiring, trying, fantastic, amazing, and surprising week.  We have learned that Jell-O is good, sandwiches are not so good still, A will try to pet unusual animals (insects) when she is happy, and that we can occasionally take her to noisy, busy family affairs and she will be okay.  Yep, just another ordinary, plain and not so simple, typical, everyday week in Sensory Land.  I may not always know how to handle my daughter’s issues, and I may feel like she is not moving forward some days, but at least I know that whatever we are doing is leaving us with some sort of positive progress over time and that is worth remembering.


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Juana Bee
    Feb 21, 2012 @ 23:15:33

    I chuckled… I pet my spider (tarantula!) from time to time! And when I was a kid, I *loved* jello sandwiches! A cube of jello, smushed between two crackers so it would ooooooze out between the holes and out the sides! Jello has a unique texture, too – it’s not *just* squishy and mushy, it has a firmness to it, too, that let’s you know it’s really there. I almost want a jello sandwich now! 🙂



  2. Kathy
    Feb 21, 2012 @ 06:05:58

    Saturday was a giant leap forward for A and a great BIG affirmation for you. She was in a room filled with friends, family, and a lot of love. It does wonders. 😀
    Love you.



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