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Popeye Arms, a.k.a. I Yam Wot I Yam

Posted Dec 12 2008 3:49pm

So. How do you get your kid to want to use her arms? Am I pushing her too soon? Too much? After surgery?
I mean, I've read the chapter on arms in Gross Motor Skills in Children With DS, but how do you get your child to do the exercises when it's like she has an aversion to using her arms for anything other than limbs that guide her hands to her mouth or to her dangly toys? She just seems so frustrated. On her tummy for at least 3 months she's pushed and pushed with her legs only to do a faceplant because her arms don't cooperate. Lest she grow up to have a rug burned forehead, this isn't gonna' work.

Her legs are super strong, but she shows no interest in using her arms. Although, as I write that, I am realizing how she is just starting to bang on stuff--tables and whatnot. But she's not about to start trying to balance when she is upright. Which she'll have to do on her knees since her little arms are so short. And yet, when she pulls on things, she's a strong little bugger. But those push-up-y looking things in the book? She doesn't think that's such a hot idea. In fact, she doesn't really like me to straighten her arms to even attempt them. I mean, will these skills develop "on their own" if I keep doing tummy time stuff with her but don't necessarily do the whole Susan Powter work out routine?

One thing that the gross motors book emphasizes is having a  desirous toy just out of reach of the baby so she'll want to reach for it. So far, Georgia likes her toys, but none of them so much that she's gonna' like, WORK for them. I guess I wouldn't be as concerned about it except that I saw a picture of one of G's little buddies propped up on his arms and he's a month younger! (God, why do I do this to myself??? And then ADMIT it???)

O.K. O.K. I know G's going to have delays. I can deal with that. But what can I do to assist in this situation? EI was here yesterday and we did this little check list thing and it turns out for many things Georgia is right on track. Ahead in many cases. But we didn't do the gross motor stuff because the woman wanted to save that for the actual PT (this was one of those initial assessment people since we are new to VT). I really liked the woman, she had good info. We are having a PT and OT out sometime soon. It was the first time though that we had ever gone through any kind of checklist. I wasn't discouraged by it, in fact I felt relieved. But then the arms things. And the fact that she's BARELY rolling over. The EI lady also mentioned that aside from the DS G's 4 hospital stays would no doubt contribute to any delays and that only makes sense. Let's see. In less than 6 months she spent 27 days in the hospital! That's almost a month! That reasonably would put her at 5 months development instead of 6. And like I said, she's doing so well in so many areas. But still. Ya know?

Why am I such an ass?

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