Friday, March 25, 2011

All About Aviana

After I posted about Aviana's leg kicks, I was asked to further describe other ways in which she expresses herself ;o) So these are some off the top of my head....

She gives us, what we call 'The Stink Eye.' She throws one our way when she is mad at us. She also saves this look for when we have pushed her too far. It usually appears at the end of the night, when we are putting the mask on her, yet again. She also uses it sometimes when we are saying things, or doing things she doesn't want to hear, or do ;o)

When I lean down to kiss her, and my hair gets in her face, she shakes her head from side to side. Her goal is to get it off her face, as fast as possible. She accompanies the head shakes, with a definite sound of 'dislike.'

While eating, sometimes Aviana doesn't want to open her mouth all the way. If Rainey comes up, like she is going to take her food, Aviana opens her mouth wide, and leans forward to chomp on the piece. She looks at Rainey like she is thinking, "You best step off doggy, that's my food!" This trait is also similar to how she was before the accident, and with Kama!

I try to move Aviana all over the house. I don't like her sitting in the same place, all the time. I notice wherever I carry her, she looks all over the place, and lifts her head. For this reason, I will prop her on the floor against the closet door while I am doing my hair. I will sit her in her chair in the kitchen with me while I am cooking, etc. Like all of us, she needs to move, or be moved!!!

When we lie in bed together, I have long conversations with her. She affectionately stares deep into my soul. These are some of my very favorite moments with her. When I am telling her how amazing she is, and how hard she works, and how much I love her, she melts like butter. She is so relaxed, and is hanging on my every word, until she falls asleep. When I tell her more interesting things, like what our plans are for the weekend and such, she is much more attentive, and her eyes dart all around.

She loves it when I get her all dressed up, and do her hair really cute. She likes when I take her over to the mirror, and tell her how pretty she looks! It's sad how quickly her cute hair, and adorable outfit come 'undone' with her intense therapy ;o(

When she comes down the inclined floor, she often times cries. Once we pick her up, and read her a book for a few minutes, she immediately stops crying, and intently listens to the story.

Aviana startles throughout the day, almost every time I warn her about what I am about to do, like turn on the music, she relaxes, knows it's coming, and doesn't startle.

Often times, right when we say the words, "It's time to pattern, or is everyone ready to pattern?" She immediately closes her eyes, as if to say, "Ooops, I fell asleep, I guess we will have to wait until later...."It has happened so many times, that we know she is a faker ;o))))

Her favorite time of day is when we do anti-gravity....the one where we sling her around. She is amazingly content. The faster we push her, the more she loves it. That is exactly how she was before the accident. We are careful to never call it T~H~E~R~A~P~Y for fear she won't like it as much ;o)

Many times, we give her her sippy cup, and she whips her head from side to side to get it out of her mouth. She finally gives in, and drinks insane amounts of water.

Her very first bite of anything is extremely shocking to her, and she cries, and holds her head to the left. We have to wait a little, and tell her to chew it. She is then good to go.

When we ask her a question, she started to sometimes make the cutest little sound, like she is agreeing with us, or wants to answer. When all of us are in conversation, she sometimes makes sounds, like she wants to join in. These sweet little sounds are music to our ears.

When we pick her up, and carry her around the park, she is in heaven. She loves being held, hugged, loved, squeezed, and kissed. She loves the sun on her face, and the wind in her hair. She especially loves it when I carry her onto all different pieces of the playground equipment. Dave takes her down the slide too, and it makes her happy.

She is tense during the process of getting ready for a bath, but once in....she loves when I take the sprayer, and run it all over her. When I hold it on her knee, she looks at her knee. When I put it on her hand, she looks at her hand. She relaxes right into bath time.

She has a complete and total meltdown when we begin to brush her teeth, but then she is usually okay with it thereafter. She likes to chew on the toothbrush :o)

Her eyes dart all around when she is excited, or hears something intriguing, like kids playing.

She loves when we give her dessert. Cake is her favorite, just like her Mommy!  She also has a love/hate relationship with ice cream. It seems everything is shocking in the beginning, especially ice cream, and then she is pretty much fine after.

Sometimes when I take too many pictures of her, she looks at me like she is saying, "Enough already, okay?!!??" "Oh and by the way, how about fixing my hair first!!!!"

She is the sweetest, most cuddly, love bug ever. Most nights, actually every night, we keep her up way past her bedtime because we love to snuggle with her.

After writing all of this....I have realized a few things. I have been meaning to learn how to upload videos to You Tube, and then put them on here for you to see. I just haven't designated the time. I promise I am going to learn this weekend, as it would be so nice to share the 'real Aviana' not just the one in still pictures, and print. I am sorry I have not learned sooner.

Many times, I have been asked something that I thought I put on the blog, but hadn't. I think blogging is weird, because many times I am made aware of the fact that I have left the most basic, or obvious things off.

Please, please, please, if ever you are wondering about something that I have not talked about, or if ever you don't know what the heck I mean by something, ask, and I will clarify ;o) Don't worry about ever offending me, or saying things wrong. I have never been one to be easily offended, and I am pretty open. I don't have any trouble talking about the simplest of things, to the deepest, most heartfelt topics.

Whew!! If you got down here, I want to thank you for reading my unexpected book ;o) :o)


  1. I loved this post Jen! My conclusion after reading this is that Avianna sure does have the best Mommy and Daddy!!

  2. I know when you came back from The Institute this last time, you talked about how much Aviana's program changed. I'd be very interested in hearing about what her program includes. I think I've commented in the past that I worked with a little boy that was on the intensive program with The Institute also. Their programs amaze me!

  3. great post!! can't wait to see the videos.

  4. Jen,
    I am so glad that you told us all of the awesome ways that Aviana communicates! It is so wonderful to know that she is really listening and understanding. :)
    Even though her life is different now, I can tell that she still has a great life with the two of you and that she is a happy girl. I am so excited to see her in video! :)

  5. That was a fun read. It makes Aviana so much more real to those of us who don't know her except here. It's impressive how in tune you are with her.


  6. Love your post. Have you heard from Oprah?

  7. Jen! I LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE this post. Oh I feel like I know her so much better. I can't wait to meet her and have her meet my kiddos! Let's plan soon!!!!!
    Jen H

  8. wow Jen that post was amazing. I know we have all followed you but only can see pictures which don't show how Avi is interacting. Which I suppose in non of our business but we have all grown to lov eyour family and its amazing to see even tough she hasn't had the breakthru that we all hope for, but to see her and her personality.

  9. I am smiling SO BIG! I loved this post!! What a fantastic expressive girl! XOXOXOXO

  10. I love this post Jen. I love reading blogs but am not much of a commenter. I have never posted before but I have been following since you started the blog. I never know what to post but I love reading about Aviana. I think of her and your family often. Thanks for sharing.

  11. I LOVE seeing and hearing about the progress. Sometimes it may be hard for you to see yourself, because you are doing all the "hard work" along with Aviana, but for other's it is so evident. You have a special "little snuggle bug", and you both are wonderful parents doing what parents do!
    Always praying for your sweet family!

  12. YAY!!!!! i SOOO FEEL LIKE i actually got to meet avi! and hang out and get to know her!!!!

    Thanks for this special 'book'! i love the pictures & stories BUT i am eagerly anticipating your YouTube contributions!!!

    <3 ~j