Sunday, August 8, 2010

So much to write about...

Where to start, what to write? There are so many things to share. Should I start with the Summer from Hell, or should I skip that part and simply go back to Zoé's daily life and routine? I think the latter seems rather better. I do need to let you know that Zoé lost both grandfathers, her Papy Moustache in France on July 21st and her Grandpa Larry in NYC on August 5th, two weeks apart. As Grammy Gina says, they "will both meet up in Heaven".

I grieve for our respective families, I did not lose just one but two fathers, as Zoé lost her two grandfathers. It is hard to know what to say to a two-and-a-half year old girl. I did tell Zoé that they left on a long journey, and that when we see a ladybug or a rainbow, that is them saying hello from above.

There are 7 stages in the grieving process, I guess I'll weave my way through denial, anger, pain, reflection, depression, guilt, loneliness and hope. The process will be a long and arduous one. I need to let time take its course. The biggest helper in this situation is my Zoé, who has the wisdom to know that after bumping her head on a table, she must go on.
I know that is what my father would want me to do anyway. It is just too hard and too soon, and no words can alleviate the pain right now. Also having an amazing family, 4 loving brothers, a strong mother, a circle of close friends and a support system will help me along the way.

So I will fill you in on my Zoé. She has been a trooper through it all. I was gone one month in the course of two and the last two weeks were the hardest. She knew I was on a "petit voyage", but nevertheless it came to be a bit too much. Thank godness we had Maud at home, who did a tremendous job, looking after Zoé, David, the household and holding up the fort.
I came back last Tuesday and didn't even see David as he flew to NYC.

Before leaving for France Zoé had started a new set of therapy across the Bay, on the Peninsula, at a place called Starfish Therapies ( ASTONISHING! AWESOME! Stacy, Zoé's new PT is truly amazing, like all the PTs that have cared for Zoé so far, but she is also one of a kind.

She uses a special piece of equipment called the Universal Exercise Unit (UEU).It is a pulley and weight system that allows to isolate muscle groups that need specific strengthening. It also combines a suspension system, which allows for functional movement and balance training. It works on the vestibular system or inner balance . For children like Zoé who have a hard time adjusting to their environment because of muscle imbalance, this piece of equipment really helps. Zoé has abnormal muscle tone and always needs to compensate, unfortunately, she often wipes out. She has a good defense mechanism in place though, for she always knows to protect herself by placing her hands down first to lessen the severity of the fall.

I do believe we can help Zoé gain strength. I am willing to drive an hour and half round trip for her to improve. I was told by two surgeons that kids like Zoé don't need physical therapy, but I refute such talk. If I hadn't taken action as soon as I did (Zoé was 4 months old when we started early intervention) I know she wouldn't be where she is today. I don't want to credit myself too much, for Zoé is an amazing inspirational little girl who has immense drive and resilience. But I have played a part and still am in her progress. I have to admit some days, I wish I could just sit down and read a book and not think about our next appointment, what to pack for the trip, as well as our ETA in order to avoid traffic on the way back. But this is my life, our life and I am proud of how much we've accomplished so far. From the early days of excruciating tummy time to now when Zoé runs down the hallway to my room to give me a hug!

Other than that, we spent a few days at the beach so far, Zoé and I both went swimming. She loves the water. We've been going to the pool at the YMCA as well. While she had the cast on, we couldn't play with the water table so it became the rice table. A diversion from water and good means of developing sensory input. I believe I have become an Occupational Therapist and need to do my coming out!
Voila for now dear friends. Till our next post we send you love. Also a big thank you to all of you who have shown support and loving during these trying times.


Bio said...

Looking good kiddo. She'll be swinging from the chandelier any day now. We missed you guys out here this weekend, but hopefully we'll all catch up in the fall.

Anonymous said...

You are amazing, I cannot tell you how much admiration I have for you. You are an inspiration to us all, and a force of nature, and little Zoé is your fawn. I send you, David and Zoé tons of love and good vibes, love, Véré

Anonymous said...

It is simply amazing how are you dealing with so much pain and sorrow but beautiful Zoé is helping you!
I have tried to reach a few times in Deolen but it was difficult.
I spoke to Sybille and told me you were on the train ;-(
I hope we can talk soon. Next week I will have internet at home, can we skype on the weekend?
All my love

Anonymous said...

Fantastic Zoe!!! Je pense bien fort à toi Sarita.
Loads of Love to you 3.