Michaela started pre-school recently so I figured it was a good time to write and update everyone.  Many things have changed in the past two years, but the basics remain the same.  Michaela is still the sweet, mild mannered, well tempered, social little girl we brought home from the hospital three years ago.  Fortunately she has been very healthy, no surgeries or major illnesses.  She had a bad case of the croup last winter and a couple of ear infections but that’s as bad as it’s been.

Michaela is still followed by several medical specialists including opthamology and  audiology but to date all remains normal.  Our biggest battles have been a persistent fungal / ingrown thumbnail that can get quite painful at times and constipation if we don’t keep a close eye on her diet.  She wears AFO orthodics to keep her feet inline.  Her occupational therapist is also experimenting with thumb splints to help limit her mobility in her thumb joint.  She has hyper-mobility in this joint due to an unstable ligament and it causes her to be less effective in her pincher grasp.  Unfortunately we are only able to splint the left hand because her right thumb is always so swollen and sore. 

Since Michaela is so social, communication is something she tries very hard at.  At the moment she has around 45 signs and adaptive signs that she uses both with cues and spontaneously.  She talks and babbles a lot but only has a few recognizable words.  Her big sister, Emily, did teach her how to whistle!  She will also use picture cards if offered to make her preferences known

Her other challenge she is conquering is walking!  Everyday she walks more and more and is more stable.  Her newest game is to stand and touch her toes, reach up high, and turn around.  It’s a very exciting time for her…and my back!  She walks independently throughout the house but needs to work on outside and distance walking.

As far as services, those too have changed and grown!  She is now attending a county special education preschool three times a week where she receives speech therapy and adaptive PE.  We are also waiting for an augmentative device evaluation.  She also receives physical, occupational, aquatic and hippotherapy all once per week.  Michaela enjoys her school and therapies but she also likes her downtime!  She loves to watch her videos (Elmo, Big Bird, Barney, Teletubbies, and Blue) and her new favorite—The Wiggles!  She loves the songs and learning the dance and hand movements that go with them!  She also likes playing with her toy phone, stacking cups, balls, books, and just exploring around the house.  She also likes to swing, but most of all she likes interaction!  She’s content playing alone, but engage her and then she’s really having fun.  I await with great anticipation how she will react to and interact with her new baby brother or sister due to arrive in March!

Wendy Mibach
Feb. 2001
MWMibach@aol.com

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She loves to watch her videos (Elmo, Big Bird, Barney, Teletubbies, and Blue) and her new favorite—The Wiggles!

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