Gabe bought a couple of books for Avery a little while ago to help her feel good about the pending arrival of her wheelchair. Susan Laughs is a really cute little book, and I loved Avery's reaction to it! It's all about a little girl called Susan, and all the things she does, like laugh, play, get angry, make jokes, etc, and on the last page you see her sitting in a wheelchair. Of course, the purpose of it is to show that children with disabilities are just like other children. Avery loved all the pictures as we were reading it for the first time, and she kept on laughing or asking questions about the various things that Susan was doing in each picture. When we turned to the last page and she saw the picture of Susan sitting in her wheelchair, Avery asked why she was in a wheelchair, so we talked about the various reasons that could make a wheelchair a necessity, including the reason she was getting one. She listened quietly, and then, as I closed the book, she looked at me and quietly said, "I really loved that book, Mom!"
The wheelchair has continued to be a positive experience for her! Yesterday when she got home from school she told me about how her teachers turned off the lights so that she could show her friends how the front caster wheels light up. I spoke to them on Monday about how I hoped that they could help foster Avery's enthusiasm for her new wheels, so I was pleased to hear that they had been showing excitement about it. I wish I could say as much about Kristen, the school PT. She called me yesterday to "touch base" about the wheelchair, which you may remember she has been against from the beginning. The 3 things she had to say about it were,
- The front right caster doesn't tough the ground quite as firmly as it should. We had already noticed this, and it is just a matter of adjusting the angle.
- It doesn't have a seat belt.
- She saw Avery stepping onto the footrests to climb into it.
In other news, I am supposed to be registering Avery for regular kindergarten tomorrow, and the school she is supposed to be going to is probably the last school in Roanoke that I would ever consider sending her to. There's just no way. So we are looking into other options.