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Thursday, July 12, 2007

Ellie's first REAL beach day

Today we went to the beach. That simple enough statement represents a HUGE accomplishment on our part! It's Ellie's second time at the beach ever and my second time going since before she was born. That's something considering how much I love the water and as a former surfer. It was an amazing afternoon of firsts for me and Ellie. Thanks to Linda forever and ever for making this happen. I would have never found this lovely beach or been able to go without you! Since it is a fact that I am on the verge of going bonkers home bound on crutches and under doctors orders not to drive you have done a great deal for my tenuous grip on sanity as well!

We went to Nataskit beach which was not crowded and accessible albeits crumbling cement, storm crushed ramps. Crutches and stroller made it to the sand alike. Beautiful, hard packed, lovely fine, soft sand. Ellie enjoyed feeling the sand on her feet and we played where are Ellie's feet a lot. She would reach down and grab a handful of sand on her feet and get excited and throw it everywhere! It was GREAT. And I was impressed that she just reached down to touch a thing she had not seen for a couple of years - sand. The water in the tidal pools abandoned by the outgoing surge was warm as a bath and placid as one too. She reached down to pull up handfuls of wet sand. I wish we could of just sat her in it to play. We couldn't however because we were really concerned about getting sand in her g-tube. I did wrap plastic wrap around her belly but I could see sand getting underneath it. The last thing you want going into her tummy is sand. Next time I think I will cover her entire tube and dressing with duoderm and make a tiny slit over the feeding port and then cover that with duoderm again so that I can access it to feed her. (see the things we deal with that no parent in their right mind would ever consider!)

If anyone has a kid with a g-tube can help in this matter I would dearly love to hear what you do to keep the sand out.

At the beach, ever a learning opportunity, we discussed the Atlantic Ocean and who lived there including shrimp, crab, lobster, whale and fish. Ellie saw waves and reached down to touch them. She even got a little sun on her face for the first time - the slightest of pink blushes which I think is already turning a golden brown. She definitely inherited her fathers' great skin!

We finished up the experience by taking a look at the horses of the carousel. Ellie was not bothered by the music which was also not too loud (more evidence of the good work they are doing with her at New School). Though we didn't ride them this time (because I don't want to do too much too soon considering her sensory integration issues) she was happy to go up to the horses and pet their bejeweled and painted necks. I think she really liked them. We will go for a ride eventually, baby steps but certainly in the near future considering Ellie's smile at petting the horse and the fact that she was nonplussed by the environment. I can't wait. I love carousels and haven't been on one in years!

I am happy too to have found a local beach that is so pretty and so accessible. No more sitting around sweltering in summer's cauldron! Thanks Linda for a GREAT day!

6 comments:

Lisa said...

Wish there were pics; your day sounds lovely.

catherine said...

that sounds fantastic. i hope you get to go back lots and lots.

Eliza said...

My youngest has a G-tube...my strategy so far has been to put one of those tank-style suits with the floaty panels on them CAREFULLY (I imagine if you caught the button pulling the suit up it wouldn't be pretty). The top part comes high enough up and is form-fitting enough that they'd have to deliberately pull that out with one hand and shove sand in with the other and I keep really close when we're anywhere near water anyway, and the legs go almost to the knee so I don't worry about them sitting in the sand, either. It's not watertight but the gut's not sterile and being a toddler mine doesn't want to go into the water above knee-level anyway (nor are they anywhere near the water without me). This is also nice because it provides a rigid covering that disperses any impact so I don't worry about a ball or frisbee hitting the button, either. I don't know if Ellie would be able to wear one of those since they require that the child's trunk be able to stay fairly straight (also they make the kid about twice as big around so the straps on her stroller, etc. would have to be let out or something)...hope that helps!

Kathryn said...

Hi Lisa,
I wish I had pics too but was too overwhelmed with it all to bring the camera - just one more thing to keep track of. But now being on the other side of experience it's coming next time so I can show y'all my bathin beauty!

Catherine - me too!

Eliza - that is really helpful! Ellie keeps her trunk pretty straight most of the time. I am going to look for one of those! There are these great tidal pools that are only a few inches deep and I have a vision of her sitting between my legs playing in the sand! I really appreciate you sharing what you do with yours! Thanks!

Retired Waif said...

Hooray for you and for Ellie!

I love the beach, and have been wanting to take a trip out there all summer...

Jacqui said...

now, if only you could ditch the crutches and go and have a surf!