When Jacob was little, he did have playdates. As Jacob grow older, the playdates became fewer, and fewer. The kids wanted to run around, and Jacob couldn't keep up. Being sick and in the hospital or recovering from an illness prevented Jacob from playdates. His daily medical care prevented us from finding time in our schedule for a playdate. In addition, the gap between Jacob and his peers have grown larger over the last 6 years. In reality, we were not asked to have playdates any longer. And I was fine with it. I got it. It wasn't as easy to play with Jacob as with his peers. He has his friends in school, and gets a lot of playtime and social time with his buddies in school. I was fine.
So, when one of the moms in Jacob's class e-mailed me to inquire if Jacob and her daughter could have a playdate, I was thinking why not? This particular girl has taken a liking to Jacob from the start, and she is incredible in including Jacob in class, and she deeply cares about him. When Jacob missed school for 2,5 weeks due to his recent cold, she missed him a lot reported her mom.
It had to be at our house, since I would then have all of Jacob's supplies in the house. I was thinking how the playdate would go, and had planned out some craft activities for both of them to work on as well as some books that I thought I could read to both of them. Little did I know that I wouldn't need to prepare a thing! Miss S walked in to our house and went straight up to Jacob. She gave him a black heart that she had sewed for him. She asked me to put Jacob in his school chair, so she could play a game with him. I immediately put Jacob in his chair, and she pulled out her game. She made Jacob choose his color for the game by showing him two choices, and Jacob picked "yellow" with his eye gaze. She then went through the game by making sure Jacob had a turn each time, and helped him to pick a color every time it was his turn. This little 5-year old girl never ever made a choice for Jacob. She every time gave him a choice, waited for him to show with his eyes what he wanted, and then helped him to implement his choice. Jacob came in 2nd on the Monkey game!
Miss S discovered Sarah's barbie chest and doll house! She was in heaven. I thought that the playdate with Jacob would be over...She would turn to the barbies, and I would entertain Jacob. I was 100% wrong. Miss S decided that Jacob and her would dress up all of Sarah's barbies, and they are many! She gave Jacob a choice for each barbie's shoes, pants/skirt, top, and hat. Whatever Jacob picked, she put on the barbie. Jacob and Miss S dressed barbies for hours!
Jacob had occupational therapy this afternoon as well. Miss Jill included Miss S. in the therapy, and Jacob did so much better when he could do it with his friend! As Miss Jill was sitting on the therapy ball with Jacob, he decided to hold up his head on his own! This is a rare thing these days, but he wanted to do it, so he could see Miss S. at the same time as he was working on the ball! Our little boy can if he wants to :-
Jacob and Miss S. played for 5 hours straight! Jacob didn't show any sign of being tired or disengaged. He just wanted to play, play, play! It is very seldom we can get five consecutive hours of engagement from Jacob, so I was so impressed with him and Miss S.
Miss S. is a very special girl. She is only five years old, but is a smart, self-confident, safe, motherly girl with a heart bigger than herself. She simply loves Jacob for who he is, not for what he can't do or what he doesn't have. She is unbelievable in reading Jacob's cues in what he wants and doesn't want. We are already planning out the next playdate, and talking about going swimming together this summer.
Jacob has a true friend, not a friend of our family or sis Sarah. His own friend. His own Miss S. We love her to pieces for bringing happiness into Jacob's life.
And yes, I have taken the "big" step to leave caringbridge for blogpost! I was ready to start incorporating photos into the blog entries, and having a bit more options with Jacob's blog. Thanks to Joakim for copying over 315 (!) posts from caringbridge to blogger!
You can easily sign up to follow Jacob on blogpost by entering one of the options on the right side of this blog post! I will also add photos and more details in the coming weeks. I just have been swamped with work, Children's Hospital, Miracles for Mito - and yes, a playdate!