Hiya,

Monday was a Public Holiday, so Dad was home for the day. Despite this, however, we didn’t see much of him as he was buried in his books studying for his TOGAF 9 certification. Mom and I kept pretty much to ourselves to allow Dad uninterrupted study time. In the afternoon, as it was Aunty Kim’s birthday, we went there to celebrate. A prawn braai was on the go, and we ended up staying quite late. I even bathed at their house, under the watchful eye of Granny and Tammy. We arrived home to find Dad shattered and red-eyed.

Dad was still home on Tuesday, as he was on study leave. Mom and I decided to evacuate the house to keep things quiet for him; so we headed off to the stores to do some shopping. I promptly fell asleep en route, so Mom brought me back home to conclude my snooze. In the afternoon, we headed to Delta Park for a play. Back home Dad was looking very harassed from all the studying, and very worried. He was scheduled to write the next morning. Mom and I convinced him to watch some TV and then go to bed, which he did. I heard him getting up at 4 o’clock in the morning to do a final read through of his mind maps.

Wednesday morning we bid Dad good luck for he’s exam and set him on his way after a hearty breakfast. Mom and I kept our fingers and toes crossed the entire morning. Even during my music lesson I tried to keep my fingers crossed, although it did prove difficult. Just after midday Dad arrived home looking completely worn out. I rushed to him to ask how it went, and he did mention it was very very tough indeed, but that he was on the shy side of ‘confident’. The best medicine for Dad then was that I crawled into bed with him and we had a nice long Team-Led snooze.

Later in the afternoon Dad did a little bit of admin and discovered that Mom’s credit card had gone shopping in Nigeria, without her. Dad called the credit card company and stopped the card. A short while later Dad filled in a form to point out the fraudulent transactions, running into the thousands in value, and emailed them back to the credit card company. A short while later the transactions were reversed and a new card was ordered for Mom.

On Thursday Dad was back to work, but fortunately it was a ‘short week’ for him, thanks to the Public Holiday and his study leave. Mom and I didn’t do too much in the morning, and in the afternoon we headed off to see Nicoletta for a general check up and to discuss some matters that are affecting me. I felt so bad for Nicoletta as she looked completely overworked. Our appointment ran behind schedule owing to a hectic morning. It did give me lots of time to play with everyone though! After leaving there later in the afternoon she was still inundated with patients waiting in reception.

The appointment itself revealed the following. It is now fully confirmed that I suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome (PTSS), from my stay at the hospital. Recent research has confirmed that babies as young as 8 weeks are fully cognitive of their surroundings and emotional aspects going on around them. Furthermore, I am happy to say that clinically I do not have a sleep disorder, but it is the effect of the hourly nightmares from the PTSS that wake me up. On regular occasions Mom and Dad find me crying or even screaming a little in my sleep, without necessarily fully waking up. There is no ‘cure’ for this, per se, just that I need to work through it, together with the love and help from Mommy and Daddy.

Other information confirmed by Nicoletta is that I’m generally on target at the moment. My vital statistics are that I’m now 87cm tall (34¼in), weigh in at 12.5kgs (25lb), and that my head circumference is 47cm (18½in). This last measure for me is a very important one, owing the complications of the AVM in my brain.

Speaking of the AVM, you will recall that from my last MRI it was suggested by my medical team in Pretoria that I go for my next brain procedure in about 2 years, or when I am 4 years old. Mom and Dad have not been to keen on this delay, as each surgery causes me to regress in some way and I forget how to do some things. For example, before my last surgery I could say ‘Daddy’. Now, since my surgery, I can only say ‘Da’, even though I want to say Daddy. It also took me a while to remember the difference between Mom and Dad – I would call both Mom and Dad, Mom.

So for this reason, we all feel it would be better to do the surgery sooner, when I am not at school, where I will be labelled as ‘slow’ by our wonderful teaching fraternity, owning to having forgotten some words and actions after another brain surgery, probably my 8th! Needless to say, peers can also be a bit harsh, and I am a sensitive guy, so I’d prefer to avoid that. Mom and Dad are therefore going to motivate for my next procedure to take place sooner as opposed to wait.

Another, more crucial reason why Mom and Dad are nervous to wait that long is that on previous occasions we were told to wait up to a year for further procedures. You will recall that this resulted in my losing my one venous drainage system, and after Mom insisted on more regular MRI’s it was revealed that my AVM was regressing and causing major problems in my brain. As there is no precedent case for the severity of my condition, Mom and Dad feel a ‘wait & see’ strategy is way to risky.

Mom also shared with Nicoletta the positive news from Lauren’s assessment, which thrilled Nicoletta. It was further confirmed by Nicoletta that in fact it is the OT’s responsibility to check my development, and not the neurologist’s, Lippert. So from this I can deduce that it was a great waste of time and money going to see a neurologist that just wanted to see if I could put coins in a money box. I could do that at 12 months! Not only was it a waste of time and money, but the negative impact the doomsday news from the neurologist had on all three of us was devastating.

Unrelated news from Dad on Thursday was that he had passed his TOGAF 9 certification exam the previous day, with a nerdish 88%. Mom and I were thrilled for him; needless to say Dad was ecstatic when we saw him later that afternoon.

Friday morning Mom and I popped into Cresta for some shopping, and in the afternoon we visited Colleen and Mathew. Claudia and Ryan were also there, and we all had a good play together. Dad was already home when we arrived back.

On Saturday morning Mom was originally supposed to have a BabyGym class, but it was postponed to next Saturday at very short notice. As a result, Mom took Nina up on a date to visit Moema’s for some indulgent cup cakes and sweets. Dad and I went to Yeesh in Bryanston during this time where we played up a storm. Mom found us both later snoozing arm-in-arm on the bed.

In the afternoon the Roos’ popped up for a visit which turned into dinner. The boys bathed me and the girls dressed me!

Sunday we took Opa for breakfast at Walnut Grove in Sandton City, to celebrate his birthday. Aunty Birgitt and Uncle Wayne were also in Jo’burg, so they joined us at the breakfast too. It was such fun having a little reunion, and as always it was awesome to see my Opa.

In the afternoon I help Dad with some DIY, which I always enjoy, but this time even more so, as Dad was making something for me. He had bought a huge piece of hardboard which Dad then primed with primer. Once that was dry he sprayed it with chalk-board paint. I was thrilled! It was turning into a massive chalk-board for me. Next Dad started cutting out a frame for the board with he’s mitre block. It started to take shape beautifully. Soon it was mounted on the wall on the study patio for me to use to my heart’s content.

Another project, which is still underway, is that Dad is making a similar sized white-board for me to mount on the study patio. That is taking a little longer as the paint is much thicker and glossy, so it takes longer to dry. I guess Dad will finish that during the week.

Well, that’s about it for this week, but before I go I want to share some of my new talents with you.

  • This week I said my first full sentence: Here you go, Mom! when I handed her something. Mom and Dad were thrilled!
  • I’ve also started to fake sleeping, complete with snoring, hence tonight’s blog title. Mom and Dad get hours of fun out of my fake sleeping.
  • Mom often claps and sings ‘I won’t go to Missy anymore, more, more’. I now clap with Mom, and when it comes to singing ‘more, more, more’, I sing it too!
  • My running is coming along nicely, to the point that I ran to people for hugs now.
  • Last but not least, I now also stand in the shower. Normally I would sit in the shower with the shower head, now I simply stand.

Ok, bye for now, ’til next week.

Love,

Jarrod

Video 1: Blowing Bubbles (click here)

Photo 1 Some early morning play

Photo 2 Manoeuvring . . .

Photo 3 . . . and climbing

Photo 4 After bashing my head really hard a milky-bottle and ice pack is very soothing

Photo 5 My new thing – drawing on the windows

Photo 6 Some more window art

Photo 7 Loving bath time

Photo 8 Practicing my driving

Photo 9 Holding on for dear life . . .

Photo 10 Standing in the shower

1 Comment on Snore-a-saurus Rex

  1. Ag jinne. I just love photo #9. Too beautiful! Congrats on your test… or daddy’s test 🙂 I must say I’m impressed but not surprised about the PTSS – babies are a whole lot more human than we give them credit for. Such a brave little boy.

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