Sunday, May 23, 2010

In Which Connor Gets Undressed

Connor has learned a new skill.

He has been cultivating a habit recently of playing with his right shirt sleeve.  He'll grab the cuff of his shirt with his left hand and pull his right arm up and down inside the sleeve.  I believe it's probably related to his sensory issues; this is yet another way to "stim," as his therapists would put it. 

Well, today he figured out that if he pushed out against the sleeve with his left hand and pulled his right hand all the way in, he can get his arm completely out of the sleeve!

I have mixed feelings about this.  On the one hand, it's the first step towards learning how to undress himself, which would be a major step towards independence.  So I'm pretty happy about that.  On the other hand, he has no idea how to get his arm back in the sleeve, and he's now doing it all the time.  Once he gets his arm out, he'll fuss and whine until I put it back in for him, and then he'll immediately do it again.  That's right: it's become a game.  Horrors.  And there is nothing I look forward to more than constantly redressing my child-- particularly when it's extremely cold outside and/or we're in a public area.

I have similar feelings about his other new habit.  He has started grabbing the collars of his shirts, pulling them up and then licking them.  Hence the gigantic wet spot on his shirt in the pictures; he's just up from some quiet time so he had a while to work on this particular outfit.  The kid is extremely defensive about what goes in his mouth, so any voluntary exploring on his part in that area is amazing progress.  However, he's soaking through a lot of shirts, and he's really good at ripping off bibs.  Also he's tasting my shirts too, and on occasion my bare arm.  There's nothing more fun than watching a stranger who's trying to make small talk with you attempting to ignore the child who is blatantly licking your shoulder.

That's progress for you!



Kristin said...

I will maintain that its better than Connor trying to lick said stranger. :) Josh hasn't gone after strangers yet, but he does try to lick on of his teachers -on her face! poor lady!

but, great job Connor!!

Anonymous said...

I would totally let Connor lick my face.

Emmett has a thing for...wait for it...bra straps! He likes to rub it through the fabric of a shirt. I know he finds it comforting, but when I see him do it to doctors or therapists, I cringe a bit. I mean, it's okay now because he's small and cute, but what if he's still doing that when he's 12? At what point does it go from cute to weird?

As for the undressing, Emmett starting doing that with his socks. He'd pull one of and then bug me until I put it back on him. The was Big Fun! Finally, I just let him suffer sockless for a while. It was painful for both of us, but now he knows that unless we're getting ready for pj's or a bath, taking off the socks is not a good idea. I do encourage him to help undress - though only when it's appropriate!

-J O'C

Anonymous said...

*This* was Big Fun. I need more coffee.
-J O'C

Herding Grasshoppers said...

Okay, I'm laughing. With you, not at you :D

Hurray for progress! Even off-beat progress. He is completely adorable.


Niksmom said...

Oh, just you wait til he figures out how to get his hirt off entirely and throws it out of the middle of winter. Fun times!

The biting/licking stuff is actually a good development. :-) Have you tried to introduce a chewy tube (that's the actual name) for him to nosh on? We went through a big shirt-chewing phase before we got chewy tubes.

Good luck.

leah said...

I was going to mention the chewy tubes, too! We're looking into them because Nolan is constantly licking/biting his hand (not sure why he does this- he still doesn't have his 2 year old molars so maybe he's teething)... he needs to find something else to chew on, and I found those on google and thought they might help!

Good news on the development(s), though I do hope he leaves his shirt on when it gets cold! Keep up the good work, Connor!

txmoabite said...

Wow - Connor looks so big and grown up in these photos!
I'll call you this weekend and we can catch up. Happy Anniversary!

Wherever HE Leads We'll Go said...

Love it! Glad to hear Connor is making progress, although probably not a good habit to practice in the winter. As for the shirt licking - I can relate. Emily likes to suck on our shirts when we hold her. We cannot go anywhere without a big wet spot on our shoulders - it is very attractive!


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