Monday 14 May 2012

Cleft Lip and Palate Awareness Week

I have to admit I wasn't aware there was an awareness week for the reason I started this blog. I guess they're not doing such a great job! If anyone ought to be aware I should be...I suppose as it seems less of an issue nowadays and life is just life, maybe I'm not looking out for things as much as I should. Whilst we're realising things, I just realised it's been very nearly four years since I wrote this post the morning after Jake's (not that he had a name then) cleft had been diagnosed. I have to admit I'm pretty pleased (and a little bit proud even), that I'm still writing it. So much has happened in four years which have gone by in a flash. Operations, new jobs, house extensions, learning to walk (him not me), a new baby, holidays, speech development, hearing tests and the rest of life and so kind of makes you forget some things, take others by granted and perhaps become less appreciative of what you have. We have Jake, who is a healthy and happy little boy full of life and his face, whilst showing some reference to the cleft, is perfect as far as we're concerned. So having a Cleft Lip and Palate Awareness Week seems like a good idea; I remember so clearly when we got our news and there was less on the interweb then than there is now, especially blogs...our first port of call was Clapa's website and then a random mix of articles and medical sites but we always came back to Clapa. So it's only fair I help this awareness thing and link back to them. And for anyone reading this for the first time and is all over the place with worry, take 10 minutes or so reading the original posts from 2008 and then so you can fast forward to beyond Jake's nearly 4 years, check out this great post by a fellow parent blogging about the experience they had with their daughter. Can they fix it? Yes they can!

Tuesday 8 May 2012

Jake at 3 years 9 months

I always think it's funny when adults talk about how old their kids are in the same way kids do. That half a year or even the extra month is so important we specifically mention it. I suppose when kids are so young the increments are all the more significant but when someone asks me how old Jake is, I'll say 4 in September or 3 and a half, yet I'm 36 not 36 and one week (since you ask). Anyway, the reason the post is called '3 years 9 months' is for anyone who's just turned up here after recently receiving a diagnosis of a cleft or who's just had a baby with a cleft. I remember when that was us (which genuinely seems like 5 minutes ago), I wanted pictures and context. It's pretty difficult to get that context of how your unborn or brand new baby will look at 3 years and 9 months. The fact is that the cleft affects us so little these days, to the point where you have to force yourself to consider it separately and it's easy to forget how much of an issue it seemed at the time. So, for anyone new here's a few photos to show you the transition. I hope you don't look at Jake now and see only a cleft repair, but I understand if you do as you've never seen him before and after all, you're here as you just got some news. I understand that as much as I know that in a while (not as much as 3 years 9 months), you too won't see or be affected by the cleft related issue which has lead you here! Take care everyone, have a great Tuesday. James