Still Talking About Not Talking
36 Weeks, Oh My God

He Still Has Green Paint All Over His Hands & I Couldn't Be Happier About It

I sometimes struggle over what constitutes an entry here...what's an important enough development to put into words and demand your eyeballs and indulgence, or what I should just post on Twitter, or maybe email to friends, or just file away in my own memory.

So this one is just for all of Noah's virtual aunts and uncles and cheerleaders, those of you who never. ever. fail to leave wonderful comments about him and your own children and family members, full of ideas and suggestions (to Liz, who suggested supplying Noah with word choices to encourage him to talk about past events [i.e. did you eat pizza or hamburger buns for lunch? did you go on the slide or hang out with those no-good ruffian beatniks at recess?]: THANK YOU. I gave myself the world's biggest forehead slap for not ever once thinking of trying that, and surprise! It works! Most of the time. I don't THINK his teacher's name is Ms. Pinky Dinky, but maybe I'm wrong).

I picked Noah up from school today -- his first Thursday class ever, and was greeted by his teacher, who was ECSTATIC. He'd had a great day -- his BEST day, thanks to a few new classmates who are a tad less "exuberant" (as she put it) than some of the Monday/Wednesday/Friday kids. Noah seemed less overwhelmed and was happy to play quietly with them throughout the day, following his calm little friends to circle time and snack time. He stayed focused and didn't wander away from the group constantly like he always does. I guess the hyper-verbal and in-your-face kids would bother him and trigger one of his little sensory-overload fits where he needs to step away and flit around the room while reciting scenes from The Incredibles and just...you know, generally be weird for awhile.

People, he FINGERPAINTED today.

His teacher smiled when she told me, and nodded extra-knowingly at my shocked, slack-jawed reaction, because...FINGERPAINTS?

It turns out that in addition to having one boy with PDD-NOS, his teacher ALSO has a son with SID. Mild, like Noah's, but enough. Enough to raise red flags and eyebrows and make you feel like you're constantly strapped on a roller coaster while blindfolded -- are we headed into an upside-down loop-dee-loop or just one of those times where you get turned a little sideways and whipped around the track for a bit?

"I've been through it," she said, "I get it."

Anyway. I'm really happy that Noah will be there five days a week now, and that it was even an option for us -- there were three full-time spots left and a set of twins snagged two of them just hours before I decided to sign Noah up. The money is...well, it is more money and it is more money than I'm probably going to find in our couch cushions...but it's just something we'll make work because we need to make it work.

This blog is going on five years old now, and while I couldn't even count the number of dumb entries I've started and deleted and even published and deleted while trying to figure out what was vaguely post-worthy, I don't think I ever imagined that one day I would sit down to tell the Internet that MY SON FINGERPAINTED, in all caps, like I expected the ceiling to open up and dump balloons and confetti on us.

But here we are. It might not seem like much, just another mother blogging all her insignificant little dreamy dreams and the sort of thing that makes people yell that NO ONE CARES ABOUT YOUR KID, GAWD, but I know a lot of you DO care, and that means so much to me, so fuck everything and bust out your party hats because Noah had a kickass day at preschool and even if tomorrow sucks and I call for that private evaluation next week and end up crying about it and he never touches the fingerpaints again, today was a good, good day.

Comments

Margarita

Fingerpainting is awesome! :)

clarabella

Congratulations on the wonderful day! Some of us really DO care and realize how momentous it is that Noah actually STUCK HIS FINGERS IN PAINT! Wow. here's to hoping the good days continue!

Ariel

Sometimes the small things we take for granted are big things for other people :) Enjoy. Frame it!

Ariel

And take a picture of the painting too!

She Likes Purple

I'm so, so happy for such a good day for you both. And, seriously, his teacher sounds phenomenal.

Christina

Exactly! Its your blog and we come here because we care. Good Job Noah! If I were as pregnant as you are I would say this is an occasion that calls for an ice cream outing, assuming you put your feet up today and your shoes fit....

HeatherPride

Well I am thrilled for all of you then - congrats on having an awesome day!

(totally post-worthy, btw!)

Tina

Congrats!! I don't even have children, but I can totally understand that this was a big event for all of you. Thank you for sharing!

divrchk

Yeah! Fingerpainting is a big deal. That is fantastic. It's also great that someone pointed out the obvious. Even with kids that have no issues, they need prodding. Who was the line leader? Who did the weather? Who was the caboose? It helps to know what happens at school so that you can ask direct questions with specifics. Any kid will have problems with vague ideas and questions.

Sannagrace

Today was a very good day! I am so happy for Noah, and for you. Nothing , absolutely nothing, beats when our kids break out of a shell, try something new, or give us a "milestone". Fingerpainting is HUGE. Good for him!!! Consider yourself balloon'ed and confetti'd.

And everything is blog-worthy. Thanks for writing everything that you do! I'm pretty sure you could blog about a brown paper bag and it would be awesome.

Lisa

YAY for good days at preschool! It IS important. We'll celebrate with you.

gabby

Hooray for good days! I am so happy for both of you. Yay, Noah! And don't worry- I love reading about your good days and sympathize with your bad, and I bet most of your readers feel the same. That's why we keep showing up, right? :) So let's break out the confetti and celebrate!

diane

Yay for fingerpainting!

I was thinking about having a glass of wine when I got home, now I definitely will to celebrate Noah :-)

bad penguin

Hooray for fingerpainting and good days!

Backpacking Dad

Excellent. I want to yell from the rooftops whenever my daughter climbs up on something else that is rickety and dangerous.

Lindsey

Oh I'm just so happy for you...and for Noah. As the mom of two boys, I relate to a great deal of what you write about. And the difference in my oldest son once we started sending him to all day preschool was UNREAL! His verbal skills shot through the roof and his behavior is so much better I can't believe it. I know what you mean about the money - but this is money well spent. You'll make it work because it is beyond worth it. Congrats, and bring on the confetti.

Ariel

::Ceiling opening up and tons and tons of balloons and confetti come flittering down::

Sorry about the mess but I couldn't contain my excitement!! That's awesome Amy! Congrats! yippie! ::does happy dance!::

Ivie

Yay, Noah! :)

Shelley

Yay Noah!!

Kim

Yay! For Noah! Good job!

Cursingmama

Coming by the $ may be hard - actually near impossible; but in the end you won't regret it. I'm paying private HS tuition for a kid that will likely never attend a 4 year college...and yet I don't regret it at all because I know he's getting the help he needs.

ashley.marie

I just clicked on some ads for you.

I want you to send Noah to preschool and not worry about it. :)

zeghsy

yay! this makes me happy for you. :)

Chris

We care so much! I am so proud of Noah and so happy for all of you. And I cannot wait for the new little one.

Jessica

YAY FOR FINGERPAINTING!! (just continuing the all-caps theme here).

Congrats to Noah and right on! good job! hi five! I hope tomorrow, or at least every Tuesday and Thursday are as good as today was.

And hooray for you as a mom for being excited enough to blog about your son's fingerpainting fun.

chiquita

that's great. I can relate b/c I was so proud last week to hear my daughter napped 3 hours at daycare. She napped! and didn't just whine incessantly all day, making me feel guilty about working.

M&Co.

Yeah!

CP

My son (now almost 12- sob) was a lot like Noah in many ways. Perhaps he had some delay issues that we didn't address? He wouldn't speak until he could break out complete and full sentences (no parroting at all) and wouldn't touch anything messy for a long time. Also was obessessed with closing doors, etc. Not sure how much was being a toddler and how much was something we should have looked into. Fortuntely, all is good now and he's in a competitive prep school, playing sports, etc.

As for the fingerpainting, I actually had tears in my eyes when I read what you wrote. My son wouldn't touch fingerpaints at any cost. He would, however, stand at the table and direct all of the other kids as to what color to use and where to put it on their papers. Although it killed me that he wouldn't touch the paint himself, I still smile when I think of the preschool teachers describing his "management" of the other kids' art projects.

You and Jason are amazing parents and Noah is such a wonderful little boy. Your new little one is going to just make your family that much more full of love and happiness.

Betsy

GO NOAH! Excellent news; so glad you posted it.

Suzanne

As the mom of a kid with SPD, I am cheering for Noah!

I know what you mean about not wanting to bog down the blog with all of this stuff. We're further down the road with Gameboy, but we still have nearly daily issues.

A friend suggested writing a book when I wrote an open letter to Michael Savage on my blog a couple of months ago. A book so that parents who are new to this whole Autism/ADHD/SPD/OCD hell could know that they're not alone.

The idea was a good one, but seriously? A book? Like I've got time? I processed the idea in the way that you're offering speech options for Noah. Maybe not a book, but a blog? Blogs I can doo. I kept it private, so that if someday, there's enough worthwhile stuff, I have it all ready to go.

And so that those milestones that Gameboy makes? They're in one easy place for him to see someday!

Sheryl

Woo hoo! Hooray Noah! And having a teacher who really gets it? God send. I predict he will progress by leaps and bounds because of her tools and awareness.

Kim

Yay Noah! Good for him. It must be a good day today because my son did a SOMERSAULT!! The little boy who constantly says, "No tak you. I watch" at his gym class whenever they ask him to do ANYTHING where his feet leave the floor. Today, he let those little feet off the floor and rolled. Aaahhh the joys of the small triumphs. Go Noah!

Jill (CDJ)

Woo hoo Noah!! I have two friends with SID, so I know what a big deal with this! And I'm guessing he just kind of looked at you like, "Yeah, of course I fingerpainted, what's the big deal, lady?" Like every kid does when you think they've done some earth shattering (because they have) but to them it's just another day at preschool.

And it's good that he has some days in school with a better mix of kids. It is amazing to me the dynamics of a preschool class.... how things and children can differ widely depending on the energy level and personalities present on any given day. My son never had problems at school, acting up or anything, until he started at this new school when we moved. And he was just a pill... talking all through nap time, sassing back teachers. I was really concerned, until one of his teachers told me that it's really only a couple days a week where it's a problem because of the "mix of kids" on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Little lemmings, they are... for better and for worse. I'm glad Noah has found a comfort zone and that you have too!

Stacy

Thanks for making me smile! I hope you'll share the masterpiece with all of us! It's the simple things in life that make it so sweet...

Kate

I'm resisting the urge to dump out an ink bottle on my desk and fingerpaint myself to celebrate. Instead, I'll throw you an internet terrorist fist bump. Keep the stories coming - nothing is small when it means progress!

Leaf, probably...

I care about your kid! And WooT! Fingerpainting!! Trust me I'm throwing handfuls of glitter your way :)

Brooks

Sometimes poster, most times lurker, father of an MR daughter, fan of Amy, and cheerleader for Noah here. I understand your concerns, I share in your dreams, and I revel in Noah's accomplishments. Small steps to be sure, but all moving in the right direction. What, no picture of his masterpiece hanging on the refrigerator?

Tirzah

Awesome job Noah!!!!

Jill (CDJ)

I meant I have two friends whose kids have SPD, by the way. Not two adult friends with it. Proofread, Jill, proofread!

Stacy

Awesome! I am so glad you shared this little tiny but also HUGE milestone. Yah!

Galsaturday

That is so fantastic! What a huge milestone for Noah! I can only imagine how excited you are. My son smiled at my husband for the first time a few weeks ago, and really, you'd think he'd landed on the moon the way we were ranting and raving. THIS though, is really big, and I'm so excited for you, AND Noah!

@tiffany

The best thing about internet confetti and balloons is that you don't have to vacuum later. :)

Megan

I'm so glad you shared that! Fingerpainting is a big deal. You should never feel like you have to justify why you write something. I love reading your blog BECAUSE of those kinds of seemingly insignificant stories. So glad it was a good. Hope tomorrow is even better.

Jen

Fingerpainting is DEFINTELY entry-worthy :) Go Noah!!!

Nicole P.

Forget the trolls. We know a milestone when we see one. Noah fingerpainting is a milestone and worthy of celebration. Thank you for sharing it with us!

Solmaz

Oh amy, of course we care! How can we not?
And it is a BIG deal, capital letter big.

jami

Whoohoo!

Alicia

YUPPEE!! Way to go Noah!! That is soo excellent!

Carolyn

Hooray Noah!!!!

Meg Beverly

I've never commented here before, but I wanted to let you know, "I get it." I have a son on the Autism spectrum and I so get it.

Fingerpainting ROCKS!!

To encourage it, you could try letting him fingerpaint/use forks, paintbrushes, sponges, etc. with cheap-o shaving cream on a baking tray. Put his plastic toys in there to encourage him to get his hands in it. Worked like a charm on my son.

And yes, I just about kisses our autism therapist when she showed me that one. Baby steps.

Missie

Way to get your Paint On, Little Picasso!

jive turkey

Well, three cheers for a good day. Don't worry about tomorrow or next week - just allow yourself to be damn happy about today. Yay.

Kelly J

Awesome. Fingerpainting just made me get all chill-bumpy and I may or may not have gotten a little teary over here...

Cate

Fingerpainting is a huge deal for kids with SID. Go Noah! Hey - my oldest (now 13) was a SID kid, and we did the weighted vest thing for a few years at school. It really helped him. Have you tried that with Noah?

Chad

I just want to let you know that I follow along here every day, and I have an admission to make.

I am in a situation where 2 (count them 2) 8+ year relationships turned into nightmare situations.

Hence, I have not had the opportunity to have any kids of my own (yet...I'm working on #3).

Anyway... the point is... I read every day, and follow along with Noah, and it makes my heart soar when you have success.

We care... All of us who can't or don't have our own love to hear every little detail.

Keep up the good work! And post some of the paintings.

nonsoccermom

Yay for Noah! Excellent news, and such a big step. I'm so excited for you guys. And I still think it is just totally awesome that his teacher has REAL experience dealing with SID and PDD-NOS.

So anyway, WOO HOO!!

Jamie AZ

Congratulations! As a friend of a mom with a 4 yo SID child, putting your hands into goopy stuff is quite an accomplishment! Confetti and balloons for all!

Rebecca

Noah is Awesome!

Burgh Baby

Yay! for Noah and YAY! for you! Do you know how fun fingerpainting is? OH, IT'S FUN!

Loth

Hurray for Noah and the fingerpainting! And in the same vein, to my big lump of 10 year old son who finally managed to tie shoelaces! Sort of! I'm thinking of commissioning a commemorative plaque

just beth

Yay for you and YAY for Noah! I totally relate, too... my twelve year old was diagnosed with *almost* aspbergers five years ago... like you, its tough because he's not QUITE all the way there... anyway, this year? HE JOINED THE FOOTBALL TEAM. And IS PLAYING. With OTHER KIDS. On a TEAM.

So fingerpainting? Yeah, I totally feel you.

Here's hoping tomorrow is AT LEAST as fabulous.

xo

b.

Irma

Congratulations, that really IS fantastic news. Glad you decided to share.

starrynite

Go Noah! Every little story you tell always makes me smile.

Maxine Dangerous

GO NOAH! Yaaaaaaay! :)

sheilah

Yay, Noah! What a sweetheart. This added a little brightness to an otherwise drab day.

Lora

Yay, Noah! My heart is full for you right now...this is fabulous!

all things BD

Boo-yah for fingerpainting!

I about died when I was able to brag that my 7 year old went two days in a row with no consequences (bad behavior reports) at school. TWO WHOLE DAYS! Not so interesting to the general public, but for us, HUGE.

So celebrate away!

Lisa

Fingerpaints! That's wonderful news (and totally blog worthy)!

Rachel

Yay Noah!

An aside:
My little brother would come home from pre-school when he was 3 and 4 and tell us tales of "I went on the swing with my friend, I colored with my friend, and I sat next to my friend at circle time. I love my friend." And when asked what his friend's name was his response was always "I don't know." Sometimes boys just don't care about the details!

Ulla

=0) I am happy to hear. He is such a beautiful little boy. If I was still three years old I'd sooo have a crush on him!

Nothing But Bonfires

Noah had the Best! Week! Ever!

Just like Britney Spears last week! Except he's about seventy thousand times cuter. (And I'm assuming he's better about wearing underwear.

Sarah

That is awesome! And no, don't feel ridiculous, these are the days you need to help get you through those days when you want to rip your hair out. That being said, WOOT! *throws confetti* :D

christina

Sounds like the new teacher is gonna get more than an apple this christmas. She is fabulous. And...Go Noah!

Kristin

That's great news!

Janna

Oh dear. I've been lurking for almost 5 years? Yes. Weird.

Jackie

That is so Cool. My 14 year old son, has Aspergers. He has SID also. Yay! Yay! Yay! for your son. Have you read "The out of Sync Child" by Carol Stock Kranowitz. Great book, must have. Glad you have a teacher that gets it.

amy

This sounds like a great day for yr family. I am really happy for you!

susan

Isn't it amazing how just taking a few people out the equation and adding a few others to it and he acts totally differnt? I am alot like that too, overly loud people make me shut down and run away. I am so happy for you two!!

Kim

YAY Noah! What a great day!

I'm celebrating with you, Amy! Whoohooooooo!

(Hey, I posted last Wednesday about my 11-almost-12-year-old coloring! By herself! For the first time! EVER! It was monumental ~ to me ~ and so very blog-worthy!)

meghan

If Noah ever needs a fingerpainting buddy, I am SO in.

heels

That's one helluva fantastic teacher that she is able to not only understand what an achievement that was, but also be excited about it. Sounds like the 5 day program is really a good move for Noah. Yay, good teacher! Yay, happy mama! Yay, NOAH!

Daisy Duke

GO NOAH! Keep making that Mama of yours cry (the good tears!)

rebecca

i am incredibly, INCREDIBLY happy for you.

Anna Marie

Hooray for Noah! My son has severe SID and I totally understand where you are coming from. YAY! for fingerpainting!

Sara

Right on, Noah! This calls for some CHIPOTLE! Heh. ;)

wordnerd

Small victories, big tears. What an awesome day -- for Noah, for you, and for those of us who follow your journey.

Just in case you haven't thought of it duh yeah right? Do you know how lucky you are to have that teacher???? Do you? (I think you do...)

Starbuck

I don't *always* comment, but I always cheer for Noah and I cheer for you and Jason for being the "we're gonna do whatever we can to help our son" parents that you are. It means so much and will make such a difference for Noah.

Liz

Yay Noah! Fan-freaking-tastic! Everybody involved in this story is awesome.

lizinsumner

Way to go, Noah!!!!! Rooting for you up/over here in Washington state!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Anne Glamore

Hooray!! That is totally post-worthy because we want to know how he (and thus you) are doing. Hey, ALL of parenting is a good day here, a shitty day there, so celebrate the good ones. And smart suggestions on Liz's part.

Dr. Maureen

Go, Noah! Go, Noah! Go, go, go Noah!

And, Amy, that teacher sounds heaven sent. I'm so happy for you and your family, and I think I speak on behalf of all of Noah's internet aunts and uncles. (Granted, they all seem to be speaking for themselves quite well.)

Emily

YAAAAY! Fingerpainting is very blog-worthy. My nephew did not get a time out in kindergarten today. I think that's fantastic, too. As is the fact that my bro ditched my phone call to go play tag with his boys. Good stuff!

Kristin

That is incredible! Progress on so many fronts for your little man! Woohooo

lisa

uh no offense amy we like your words and all but i think i speak for all the internets when i DEMAND to see the masterpiece!!

Jessica

Yay for good days!! You keep me riveted with your words no matter what they're about. Thank you, as always, for sharing. And go Noah!

Leah

So proud. Of both of you.

ali

We DO care, you are quite right. And we do so appreciate all the updates on everyone's favorite boy with unfairly perfect eyelashes.

Jody

Yeah, Noah! And "Yeah, Mommy!" while I'm at it. Every day is so different with these wonderful little people, and you definitely should be celebrating all the wonderful things about today.

aly

YAAAAAAY NOAH!

(and please dont ever NOT post something b/c some of us are trolls. some of us are not! and adore noah! and adore the fact he's fingerpainting! we're there cheering right there with you-- just let us!!! :))

Superfantastic

As someone who has worked with lots of kids with SID, I know that fingerpainting is a very big, very exciting, celebration-worthy deal. Go Noah, with your bad squishy-stuff-touching self.

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