Thursday, January 25, 2018

Life with 5p- Lately

How about something not related to chemo or cancer?

Life with 5p- syndrome...lately. Olivia turned eleven back in November. She's in fourth grade, mostly integrated into the mainstream classroom but pulled out for math because, duh, math is hard.

She's sleeping great these days. I can take her to her room, tuck her into her bed, kiss her goodnight, tell her I'll be back in a few minutes, leave the room and come back twenty minutes later to find her sound asleep. Can you even imagine? A couple of years ago I couldn't have. And here we are.

At the beginning of the year, she was coming home with 45 minutes to an hour's worth of homework every single school night. Today, we spend ten minutes on her homework. That included spelling and math. The difference is amazing.

She started getting pulled out for math back in September (right around the time of my surgery) and it's been amazing. Her new teacher is even trying different strategies to help her learn multiplication and division. At our last face to face meeting, though, we agreed that as long as Liv can master addition and subtraction to the point of being able to tell if someone is giving her the correct change, we'll be happy with her math education. We all know that we ALL walk around with calculators these days, so is multiplication/division really THAT important? Okay, maybe so, but perhaps not so much for Olivia.

Behaviors...well, she can have some attention issues. A lot of her reports from school are that she starts slow but builds up her endurance and almost always finishes her tasks by the end of the day. She has some stimming behaviors that we just deal with. She has to hope before she can sit down. She flaps her hands when she's nervous or when she's switching tasks.

Maybe the biggest thing is that she's a little (a lot!!) spoiled. She loves being the baby of the family. She's very indulged and, well, a little (probably a lot) lazy. She CAN totally feed herself and yet, she doesn't want to. Her hands work perfectly well, she can write quite legibly these days. But she'd much prefer to have someone shovel food into her mouth than to do it herself.

She's the baby of the family, she's quite charming and it's easy to baby her. And yet, I often remind her, she's ELEVEN. She has hands that work. She can lift a spoon to her own mouth. She fights this so much. It's an ongoing battle. She never reached that two year old stage where she insists, "I can do it myself."

She does like to remind us often, though, that she's not a baby. I like to retort, "Prove it, pick up the spoon and feed yourself that cereal."

She always just rolls her eyes and says with disgust, "Mom!"

What are you going to do?

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