Thursday 18 March 2010


So, after just 18 months, my boy looked up at me and said,


That was last Sunday morning as we were in bed and Clare was opening her Mother's day cards. The irony of it all!

I've been waiting patiently. Clare's mum has been repeating dadadadadadadadada for the last year or so. He's been saying mamamammamamama for ages so to finally hear him say it was awesome, if long overdue.

He went for his hearing test last week and aced it. They were also happy with his speech development and told us to keep a list on the fridge of the sounds he's making and what we think they might correspond to. Sure enough those words are starting to make sense. Narna is banana, rack-or is tractor and dadda is daddy. So he can talk and his speech is developing nicely. Ever since he sailed through the second operation, this bit is really the only thing we need to worry about regarding the cleft between now and when he goes to school and we monitor possible bullying and then when he's 8 or 9 for the last operation. So it's good he's on the right road.

Separately, I had some nice comments from a lady in Australia who'd found the blog after having had her unborn son's cleft lip diagnosed at her twenty week scan. Whether you're in Oz, Guildford or outer Mongolia you'll immediately go to the web when something like this happens to suck up as much information as possible. It also proves Google works! The longevity of this tome combined with how blogs and search engines work mean that typing in anything from '20 week scan', 'cleft lip and palate blog' or 'probable cleft palate' will usually display What Now?! somewhere near the top. I'm really glad that someone who was searching found something they could take from all of this. It sounds a bit wanky that, and if we hadn't been through all of this, then I'd take the p*ss out of anyone who said such a thing but I do remember the afternoon of our scan vividly. All we wanted was information, before and after photos, and it was all consuming; but for all the medical sites and reports available there wasn't (or at least not when we first had a look around) a personal account of the experience from start to finish. I think we'd have got something from that and I'm pleased to have been able to help in some way.

I've mentioned a couple of times the friend of a friend who emailed me photos of his boy at 18 months after both successful operations. Those were a great help and whilst I didn't know the chap, his empathy was worth so much more than the sympathy we got in spades from all the people we did know.

It's funny how whoever you are, whatever you do, life just circles on. I'm sure the guys who just read this will be passing their experiences on to others in the same situation they're in right now in 18 months' time.

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