Friday, October 3, 2014

31 for 21: Jaycee's Deer

Continuing with the 31 days of blogging for Trisomy 21 (i.e. Down syndrome), today I bring you photo Friday with a story.

These are my nieces Gabby and AJ. For a birthday party last year, they created costumes to entertain the crowd. Gabby, on the left, was a deer complete with pipe cleaner antlers. AJ was a dog. When they made their grand entrance, Jaycee missed it; she just wasn't paying attention. 
Then she got up close to Gabby and noticed the costumes. She tried to wipe off her black nose. She signed "deer" and "dog" again and again. She made noises that seemed to indicate that the costumes bothered her. But, then the costume time was over, and it seemed like Jaycee was fine.
Then, the next morning came...Jaycee signed, "deer, dog, scared" meaning that she was scared. Then she would type into her communication device, "Gabby" and sign "deer." She brought it up over and over.
When we saw grandma at church two days later, Jaycee told her how the deer and the dog scared her. She brought it up over and over again. This was really the first time that Jaycee ever recalled an event and brought it up like this. She had never initiated a conversation with someone about an event in her life. So, while I wasn't happy she was scared, I was happy that she was talking about something that happened in her life on her own. It was really a big milestone for her!
It's been almost a year and Jaycee is still talking about Gabby the deer. She has stopped talking about how she's scared. She just refers to Gabby as "deer" in sign. It's cute.

Here's cousin Gabby signing deer on Jaycee. Everyone in the family knows when Jaycee signs deer now, she can only mean one thing...Cousin Gabby! 

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