A place to show my love for my granddaughter who lives with Cerebral Palsy and my passion for painting. In an effort of raising awareness for C.P. every painting brush stroke I make on raw canvas is a stroke of love, as I discretely paint a green C.P. awareness ribbon in every piece. Can you find them?
Do you know someone who would like to have a painting done? email www.harrold.janet@gmail.com

Friday, October 26, 2012

Hailey Strikes Up a Conversation!

What’s that you say? Hailey carried on a conversation? With who? How? Isn’t Hailey non verbal? Yes, she is non verbal and yes, she actually initiated a conversation with one of the teachers at school. For all of my typically developing friends and family members, let me pose this question to you...can you imagine, even for one day that you you can’t speak? You are hurting, but you can’t explain to the doctor where you hurt, or you are hungry and you cannot say, “hey i’m hungry, can we have pizza tonight” maybe you know all the answers when someone asks a question, but you just can’t blurt it out, you can’t even write it down. Can you imagine, just for one day not being able to express your feelings aloud (good or bad) How frustrating would that be? Maybe you need help, but you can’t ask for it. How scary? Can you imagine? This is only one of the many challenges that Hailey and so many others face every single minute of everyday. We definitely take speaking for granted. Over the years we have tried so many ways to be able to communicate with Hailey. We learned a bit of sign language, and that was helpful, but Hailey can not really manipulate her fingers, the way that you need to for signing. She does however do an approximation for a couple of words such as water , and ice-cream. All together I would say she has less than 12 words that she can sign or approximate. Every little bit helps to cut down on the frustration level, but the older Hailey gets. The more we think that she should be forming full sentences, and today she did just that! Hailey has a communication device that she uses predominantly at school, this augmentative and alternative communication product is a computer that allows those who are non-verbal or with limited speech to be able communicate with the world. The device has been customized for Hailey, with her family members names, t.v. programs she likes, food she eats etc.etc. At school Hailey has a personal aide to help her, this is a conversation that her aide said she had in the school hallway today! Posted on facebook by Natalie... PROUD MOMMY MOMENT!! Hailey doesn’t like to use her “talker” dynavox with us as much at home as she does at school and we think it’s because we understand her better, but today at school she spotted someone in the hallway that she didn’t know, seeing the puzzled look on her face her aide said “Oh, that’s Mr. Hugh”, the older kids gym teacher. She then went to the page on her talker where her teachers have been uploaded and noticed that he wasn’t there, she went back to a blank page and pushed it towards her aide so she would put his name in. Then Hailey pushing the appropriate icons said “Mr. Hugh I have a brother named Brody” (she formed this sentence herself btw!!) :) and I guess he said “Oh really, nice!” and she said “little brother” then she went to the page that allows her to ask questions and said “do you have any brothers or sisters?” It turns out he does and I guess Hailey got real happy with the response. Just knowing that she can have a conversation with someone she doesn’t even know is just amazing to me!! Needless to say, we were just ecstatic and for one split moment the roles were reversed and Hailey had left US speechless.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Hailey's Dance

For over 5 years now Meghan, Founder of Impact Dance Co.and best friend of Natalie has had visions of Hailey inspired dancers in her head. Within the first few times she met Hailey she fell in love with her. Being the creative dancer that she is Meghan couldn’t help but be inspired by Hailey’s uniqueness, by her quirky movements, her smile, her grace, her total sweetness. She just new that she had to show the world her vision, the way she see’s Hailey. She wanted to open the minds and the hearts of everyone who knows Hailey and even the people out there who don’t yet know her.
It was almost a year ago when Meghan invited us to her studio and showed us what her dancers had been working on. Before that day her dancers had only studied Hailey in short video clips. A dance was choreographed by the short snippets they viewed and I thought it was absolutely beautiful. Hailey in typical Hailey fashion watched their every move with her photographic memory, and to our amazement, after the music stopped and started again, Hailey dropped to the floor and started to copy their moves as if dictating to them how it should have been done. There wasn’t a dry eye in the room, that is except for Hailey who soulfully danced as if she was in charge. The dancers instinctively followed her lead and even tried to “W” sit the way that Hailey’s hip sockets allow her sit. After a lot of hard work and fundraising this magical evening is finally here, you wont want to miss it! The performance is in a black box theatre in with 150 seats for 2 nights. Friday Nov. 23rd and Saturday Nov. 24th both performances are at 8:00 p.m. The Green St Theatre (2nd floor) 185 Green Street Cambridge MA Tickets $20 for seats $10 for mat seating ( Suggested for children and students.) To purchase tickets Email impactdance2@yahoo.com Call 617-997-3527 *Limited amount of tickets available at the door.*