Little Steps Back and Little Victories

Yesterday was a parents and teacher meeting at Malachi’s school.  I’ve been so anxious to know what he’s learning and what is taught in Kindergarten here.  This last week Chi has been speaking more Spanish at home….when he talks to himself or when he’s playing with his brothers and sometimes when he talks with us.  I had been really encouraged and then yesterday we went to this meeting.  First of all, it was packed with parents….the meeting was at 9am and Paola, his teacher, spoke with superfast speed….we (Brian and I both went and the E’s watched the other two boys) needed superheroe ears to understand.  Well, we did understand a lot of it, but our brains were completely fried for the rest of the day for focusing on fast Spanish for an hour and a half.  SO basically, this class of 14 get along really well and are very democratic when making decisions and are really unified.  It all sounds so wonderful, but as other parents spoke about their kids and as Paola talked about specific kids and things they’ve said and their curiosity….it hit me, My son is pretty much only learning Spanish right now.  He can’t display his curosity about subjects through questions right now….he’s learning commands and vocabulary…..and I suddenly teared up in the middle of this meeting and had to keep myself from crying.  They’ve been doing a lot with plants right now, growing some and talking about respiration in plants.  Malachi had told us they were growing plants and he had some homework a few weeks ago where he had to draw a house plant and label the parts.  I suddenly felt very overwhelmed again, I really need to focus on how to supplement what he’s learning in Spanish and also talk about it in English.  I’ve been thinking more about how to teach him to read in English too…..I know so many different ways to teach it…but was wondering what you all have found to be helpful with your kids.  I really appreciate any suggestions.  =)  And in all of this is a small death of my expectations….I’m mourning because my son has a different experience than what I grew up….it’s not better or worse just different and there will be many more of these deaths over the years. In all of this he is so courageous and doesn’t ever complain about not being understood, he just tells us that if talks like he is talking right now(in English) his friends at school can’t understand him.  He doesn’t ever say anything negative, and so I am very thankful for that.   I still don’t know what else they will be learning….I don’t think they’ve really even started anything with letters yet and I wonder when they start to learn to read.  On top of all this, I’ve been doing some more research this week about snoring.  Malachi has snored for a while now and we always knew it wasn’t a good thing for kids to snore.  But it seems to be getting worse and all my research says that kids who snore will have learning issues and often display characteristics of ADD or ADHD, but it is because of the lack of oxygen and restful sleep that cause these ADD like characteristics.  So everything says to have tonsils and adnoids out.  We are looking for a pediatrician or ENT and really hope to find someone soon.  He has a small mouth and small throat and his tonsils are swollen….it makes the passage way for air even smaller and then when you sleep the passage air relaxes some and that’s why there’s snoring.  And he takes forever to eat….which is another symptom if this that I came across for the first time a few days ago.  So….I want those things out!  It just feels like another obstacle in learning another language and learning in school that we just need to get rid of sometime in the next 6 months.  No one in my family ever had tonsil issues….please share anything positive or negative you know about this surgery.  =) 

So onto some positive little victories.  They aren’t personal victories, but I feel them and are very encouraging to me.  Jil has been driving the car (5 speed) around for several weeks now—moslty on the small and not so busy streets around our houses.  Yesterday afternoon she picked me up to go to the office to have CPC(accountablilty) w/ Deb.  Afterwards, she drove onto the street close by that has A LOT more traffic and parallel parked to pick up her clothes from the laundry service(they’ve been doing lots of washing to get rid of the ringworm).  And then she drove me home.  This is a BIG deal—-it’s a small step of freedom and independence and courage that just screams to you…”Okay, I CAN do this. I can drive and shift and park with lots of other cars around.”  SO hopefully someday soon driving a stick will be the sameway for me.  It will be a BIG victory for me when that happens. 

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7 thoughts on “Little Steps Back and Little Victories”

  1. Wow! I almost teared up reading about your feelings about Malachi’s school. There are so many things to deal with for you and the educational and emotional needs he is dealing with. I will be reminded of this as Mckenna is starting elementary school this fall and be in prayer for you guys! My good friend’s daughter (4 1/2) just had her adenoids and tonsils out a week and a half ago, so I know some of what she has dealt with and could answer some of your questions (or ask my friend if I can’t).

  2. I never knew all that tonsil stuff before.  My tonsils are huge and I get tonsil rocks in them all the time.  Someday, I’m going to have them out and it’s going to be fantastic.  Thanks for sharing all your thoughts about Malachi.  I understand the “loss of the dream” part.  I have that with Miles all the time.  And I know that he’s going to be fine and great and all that, it’s just not the experienced I imagined.  And I’m glad that you’re letting yourself feel those emotions.  You’re doing an amazing job and God has his hand on your lives down there.  We miss you. 

  3. Oh wow, lots to pray for. I teared up over the different experience Malachi will have and how foreign that must feel right now. Sounds like he is being amazing through all of this which is fantastic! Sounds like you know your stuff about his snoring issue. We will be praying that your questions will be answered and the problems will be solved.we love you guys and miss you!

  4. Tara, you have so much to adjust to right now, and I can feel your mother pain and concern for Chi as he learns about living in Argentina and school and friends.  He will be so strong because of this, and God is right there with him during school, helping him understand and learn.  We’re praying for you all!  As for as the tonsils thing goes, our oldest Tobi, who is now 7, had her tonsils & adenoids removed a year ago January.  She had two colds the fall before and her tonsils stayed swollen (I think they were enlarged before that already).  She would snore loudly when she was sleeping and even breathed loudly awake when she was concentrating on a task, and sounded rather nasal.  Tobi didn’t sleep well at night either and had darker circles under her eyes, and it was hard to get her up and going in the morning, probably because her sleep was so interrupted and restless.  We wondered too about the ADD tendencies for Tobi. Her breathing was obstructive, so the Dr. decided it was time to get them out.  It was an outpatient surgery, she was home by noon that day, and recovered quickly.  Even with my nervousness about the whole surgery thing, I was amazed at how quickly she bounced back to her normal self.  She loved having popsicles and ice cream and jello whenever she asked =0)  If this sounds anything like Malachi, and it seems kind of similar, then I would recommend the surgery.  Tobi sleeps so much better now & is able to start her day fresh and rested (if we could just get her to sleep earlier, she likes to read in bed a lot). She doesn’t snore anymore, and the dark circles are gone.  Gosh, this is a really long post, but I hope it’s helpful as you try to figure out what to do for Chi.  We’ll keep praying & we love you guys! 

  5. Thanks for taking the time to post this.  In my American ignorance it did not cross my mind that he is learning so many concepts (science etc) in Spanish for the first time.  And maybe not learning somethings until he does know lots of Spanish.  And you know he will be fine, even great, but your heart still aches a bit I’m sure.  Yeah for Jil driving.  You guys/girls can do this thing.  We are praying for you. 

  6. @summeravey – THanks so much.  That’s so good to hear.  He had an xray this last week and his adenoids are enlarged.  We are making an appointment with and ENT this week and hoping to get these things out!

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