Tuesday, July 5, 2011

One year.

Today is July 5th. A year ago today, Joon was admitted to the hospital. A year ago, we knew something was seriously wrong with her, but no one had any idea how serious it was. After three days of taking her to the ER and being sent home, we finally got someone to listen to us. Unfortunately, she suffered in the military hospital for a week with a doctor ignoring her before we managed to get her transferred to the Children's Hospital. She was hospitalized for an entire month, before she was stable enough to be released.

It's amazing what a difference a year can make. A year ago, Joon was like a newborn. She couldn't eat, drink, talk, walk, stand up, sit, or even hold her head up. All she did was lay there and cry. A year later, she's back to normal. You can't tell she was sick at all. She has made a complete recovery.

She regained everything she lost while she was sick. While she was being treated in the hospital, she slowly learned to sit up on her own, then stand, then walk. She learned to eat, and finally, after almost a month, she learned to drink. After leaving the hospital, she went to Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy, which helped her with her continuing recovery. With their help, she rebuilt all the strength and skills she had lost.

When she left the hospital, she still couldn't talk, but learned to talk about gradually over the next few months. She never did get the Speech Therapy that the Children's Hospital had recommended, because she managed to learn to talk again by the time the insurance approved her evaluation. She was about 38 months old when she was evaluated, and she tested at a 48 month level. So clearly she did not need speech therapy at that point.

She continued her PT and OT through the end of December. They re-evaluated her, and her motor skills were all good for her age level. Her strength was a little behind, but they said all she needs is something like a dance class or karate. There's a 3-year-old beginning dance class at the community center near our house, so we signed her up for that.

She has finished her first year of preschool. At the beginning of the school year, she wasn't talking at all, and I thought maybe she wouldn't be able to go. But after we met the teacher, she said she didn't think it would be a problem, and we should let Joon try it out. I'm glad she did. Joon did wonderfully in preschool, and I think it really helped speed up her recovery. She started out very shy and didn't want to interact much with the other kids, but by May, she was doing great. Her class put on a holiday program in December, and another program in May. Joon didn't participate much in the December show, but she did during the May show.

Here's a video of Joon's class doing their last show:

July 4th, 2010:


July 4th, 2011:


We took Joon to see the fireworks last night. This was particularly exciting, not just because it's always fun to celebrate with family, but because Joon had to miss out on the fireworks last year. She had been looking forward to watching the fireworks, but we were in the ER all night on the 4th. Of course while Joon was so sick, we were not at all concerned with missing the holiday. But now it's super awesome that she's back to normal and we were able to celebrate what we missed last year.

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