Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Gymnastics Class

This is not an inspirational post or a controversial post or a writing exercise post. This is a tiny glimpse into our morning because it was kind of a big deal.
This morning was Addison's VERY FIRST
gymnastics class.
I got her kind of worked up about it (OK fine, I sang Wheels on the Bus over and over and over to get her to smile for the camera)
But I was excited to see how she would do....
And to be honest, I almost walked out of the class with her after 5 minutes. She didn't want to sit on the mat. She didn't want to stretch. She didn't want to pretend to have butterflies on her head. She didn't want to do ANYTHING that she didn't think up first. Her physical therapist met us there, and I finally gave the PT Carter to hold, and I held Addison in a firm grip on the floor and waved her limbs and such myself looking sheepishly at the rest of the class eagerly following the teacher's instructions and realizing that this was the first time that Addison was put in a class situation that didn't entirely revolve around her.
But as we got rolling (pun intended) into the main part of the class, things got better. No she wasn't able to do everything the rest of the class was doing. No she wasn't any happier about following instructions. No I didn't calmly sit in the corner sipping coffee while she performed mad twirls on the hand bars bragging to everyone that she got her talent from her mother (insert stubbornness for talent and that sounds about right).
BUT Addison did start doing some of the actions the second time around each obstacle course (she even attempted a roll all on her own!). AND she really seemed to enjoy the big room full of fun stuff. She was always extremely curious and wanted to explore EVERYTHING.
At the end of class, Addison's PT (pictured below) and I decided that if Addison did this every week, she would become better and better at not only gymnastics, but following instructions and fitting into a class environment.
All in all- a win
(She was allowed to keep her shoes on because of her orthodics)
and something that would be really good for Addison (although a LOT of work on my part to teach her to be involved as politely as I would expect Carter to be if he was this age and in his first class). If we put in the sweat and tears now, maybe her preschool transition will be easier???? 
I don't want to say the rest of her life "Oh, it's OK that she's poorly behaved because she's SPECIAL" (see yesterday's post). I really think that Addison has the capability to behave just as sweetly as the other members of the class. Can she DO all the same physical activities on the gym equipment? No. But she can learn to wait her turn, to not run circles around the room, to sit when she's asked to sit, and to follow the class to the next activity.
So I guess this class is my first chance to truly practice what I preach. (-:
(yes, she DID walk on this balance beam the second time we tried it!)
(she's walking on a trampoline here)
And she wouldn't jump into the pit, she wanted to gently place herself down in...lol...so cautious!
So yeah, I'm exhausted and both kids are sound asleep. But I'd say that the first gymnastics class was a success! Wish us luck for next week!!!

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