Here we are again, a new school year and already facing Halloween! My oldest son and I were talking about the new school year and he asked me, “Mom, what did you used to do when you started school?” It got me thinking about the old essay topic “What did you do this summer?” So, I thought I would honor that back to school tradition, and share with y’all what we did this summer!
My husband Cesar helped coach Romy’s t-ball team and they made it all the way to the championship game! They didn’t win but it didn’t matter… The kids were just so excited to be getting a trophy! I wish it would always stay that way. I was so proud of my son. He really surprised me with his sportsmanship. After most games, if we happened to walk by a player from the opposing team, he would say “good game Pirates” or “good game Cubs”. I asked him why he did that and he said, “Because Mom, if we lost, that’s what I would want someone to tell me.” I tear up even now thinking about it. It’s these little things that your kids do that validate that they are listening to you! Now don’t get me wrong, he’s not perfect and he still cried if a play got him out, but, he’s starting to understand “do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” It’s something that will always apply to all areas of his life.
We started taking everyone to the pool this summer. It has been so much fun teaching the babies to blow bubbles in the water, kick their feet, and paddle their hands. I have to say their favorite part is jumping to mom and dad! After we swim we always play on the playground before heading home. Everyone has mastered the “BIG” slide this year! I can’t believe two years ago, we were still getting intensive therapy from the Infant Program so that they could learn to crawl, walk and even eat different textures…all their milestones. It amazes me every time I think about all the progress they’ve made. Early intervention works!!! I see it’s effects on a daily basis! Now if only those pesky legislatures could see my babies going down that slide, maybe they would think twice about cutting the early intervention funding!!!
We took our first family vacation this summer! It was a lot of work for my husband and I but it was also a lot of fun! We made lots of memories! We had to get creative with our hotel room. Most hotel rooms are not equipped for 6 people. So, we took a really nice air mattress for the kids. They loved it of course. Our hotel made it really special for the kids. On the first night they brought them milk and cookies. The next day, they brought them each a backpack with fun activities and games. The triplets went to the beach for the first time! They loved the water and they loved playing in the sand but they hated that the sand stuck to their hands and feet! I have to say, I don’t like that either! We also visited the Texas State Aquarium. I loved to see the amazement in the kid’s faces when they saw the giant turtles, sharks, jelly fish, and fish!
So, here we are, back to school. My six-year-old is now in first grade. He loves his new teacher and his new class. The triplet’s school sent me a letter saying that it was time, the babies will be moved up to a PRE-SCHOOL class. I know this sounds ridiculous, but it took my breath away! They would be going to the bathroom by themselves, no more diapers/pull-ups, and they would be serving themselves during their family style lunch…WOW. I really wanted to cry when I read about their new routine. So, if that NICU doctor had told me when my babies were in little incubators learning how to suck and swallow with tubes and machines hooked up to all of them that in two and a half years these little guys and girl will be swimming in a big pool, going down a big slide, potty trained, talking up a storm and going into a preschool classroom, I would have never believed it! Maybe you’re a parent of a premature infant or have a toddler with developmental delays, please consider having your child evaluated by an early intervention program. The sooner the better because it does work!!!
Sonia Salas, Asst. Director, Easter Seals Greater Houston Infant Program