Monday, June 07, 2010

Dear Son's Make a Wish Trip-Day 5-Disney Photos!

Thursday, May 20, 2010~Day 5
Each day of our trip was really fun. On Thursday, we got up early for Disney Character photos at Julie's Safari Theatre (see above photo), which is located right in the middle of Give Kids the World Village. By Thursday, Dear Son was really getting into the whole trip idea. We started every day right after Dear Son finished his breakfast via his g-tube in the room. This meant I had to be up pretty early to get his feeding done on time. I typically tell him what the plans are for the day while he's lying in bed getting his feeding. Once I told him we were off to see Mickey and Minnie Mouse, he was pretty excited. He had a big smile on his face. Mornings are Dear Son's best times because he is well rested and has the most energy.
Character photos are taken on the stage.
Dear Son with Mickey and Minnie Mouse.Looks like Dad is having a good time with Minnie Mouse!

The family photo. As we waited in line inside the theatre, a young mother started talking to me. She had a little girl that looked to be around three years old or so but very tiny. She was clearly frustrated. She talked about how difficult it was because the little girl cried all the time. She talked about how hard it was on her marriage and how much work it is to take care of her daughter and other children. Throughout the week, we had several opportunities to speak with other parents and you could really see how difficult it was to care for these children. I felt sorry for this woman because she was so incredibly stressed out. It was really sad but illustrated just how challenging it can be caring for these children.
By now, Dear Son is really enjoying himself!
Dear Son acting cool now...

God bless these people in these character outfits. It was so hot that morning that the heat nearly knocked you over when you went outside. I can't imagine being in those costumes for even a minute!

It was so hot that we decided to take the day off and relax. Dear Son was quite exhausted at Sea World the day before and with the heat being so hot I was a little worried that Dear Son might overheat (He wears a Scopolamine patch to dry up secretions to prevent aspiration; a side effect is that it doesn't allow him to sweat so he can't cool off.). We headed back to our villa for a few hours of rest and relaxation.
After lunch, the boys headed out to Bob's Sparkleberry Nature Trail, which is right on the premises. It was great that so many things were located right there. It really felt like a vacation when you got to go out and do things every day versus stay at home. Here's a scene from the trail.

Another pretty view~reminds us of the trails at home around the golf course!

More views...

Some excitement in the water!

Looks like someone caught a fish! Not sure who since I wasn't there but this lady thought Dear Son might enjoy it.

After that, the boys headed over to the Ice Cream Palace. Ice cream is available every day from 7:30 a.m. until 9:30 p.m. There are giant ice cream bowls outside that you can sit in. I kept thinking these would be great for softballs teams in the summer. The best part is that everything at Give Kids the World is wheelchair accessible! Yay!

Here are some people enjoying the ice cream. One little boy wanted three scoops of ice cream. His Dad said two would be fine since they could come back every day, lol!

Dear Son looks a little worn out about now. Dad's getting his ice cream.

After the boys came home and rested a bit, we all headed out for the pool. It was the PERFECT day for that since it was so hot. While we were there, we met other families who did the same thing we did. Everyone stayed home from the theme parks and met at the pool!
One of the great things, sort of, was seeing other parents like us. Mothers and fathers taking care of their special needs kids. The parents at the pool, all looked a little bit tired and a little bit worn out. I could see by their faces that we all walked the same walk. On the other hand, it was pretty sad. Each child was there because they had a life threatening condition. One family had four kids, the youngest was three. She had cancer. In the photo above, you see the father carrying his special needs child. The lack of water wheelchairs was a big issue that week. On this day alone, there were three families other than ours that needed them. Dear Son was the oldest and largest child however everyone needed them.
I had a few pictures of Dear Son in the pool with us however I didn't think I needed to overshare pictures of Mom and Dad in their bathing suits at the pool. I hope you'll understand. We are middle age people by now. One thing that did work out great was Dear Son's life jacket. We got a new one for the trip and it had a zipper down the front. Since it was difficult to get on, I had a a side zipper added which made putting on the life jacket a breeze! What a great idea!
But the best part of our pool time was Dear Son. As soon as he got back into the deeper water, I would hold the wheelchair and Dad would hold Dear Son. His head would lean on Dad's chest and Dear Son tried to move his legs in position so he could float. It was really encouraging to see him try to move his legs and get his legs out in front of him and relax. It was also good that he remembered how to do this. We had a great time that day.

I love this picture of him relaxing near the pool. What was great was that after Dear Son went swimming, he tried to talk. When he's really happy, he'll try to say, "hi" and then repeat it over and over again. He kept saying "hi" so I knew he was happy. He has only spoken around six words in his life (hi, Mom, yah and I love you.) and it's really a blessing to hear him talk. I dream of a day when I could have a five minute conversation with him. I tell him if he could talk for one day, I wouldn't say anything because I'd just want to listen to hear his beautiful voice. His eyes light up and he smiles when I tell him that.

Dear Son looks like a model in this recliner. Pictures like this look like nothing is wrong. He looks so relaxed. What a beautiful child.

He took a little nap while we took turns going in the pool.

We came back to the pool on Friday as well and could have spent the whole week here. They had many events in the evening, including pool parties however Dear Son was typically done for the day by dinner or so.
By this time of the week, our vacation seemed to be going by so fast! We hated to say goodbye to this pool however. After the pool, we went back to the villa and ordered dinner in-it was great not to have to cook at all and I generally enjoy cooking most everything from scratch. Instead, I was thankful for all of the pampering from this vacation; I remembered how many days back home when I was so exhausted I could hardly do another thing that day. Giving meds every six hours plus being up a lot at night is exhausting over time. I decided for this trip that I would enjoy everything the trip had to offer and I think we did. I know Dear Son was really enjoying the trip as well.


Susan said...

I am overjoyed for you that this vacation was so relaxing for you and enjoyable for DS!! I was so excited when you said he was talking, amazingly wonderful. I am so happy for both of you (and dad too).

Ashley's Mom said...

Such beautiful pictures. They bring back great memories for me from the time we took my dear Ashley there for Make A Wish.

I have a strange question for you - what size G-tube does your son use? I'm finding a definite lack of sizes available for Ashley, and don't understand why. She is a teenager soon to be an adult. I know they must make adult size G-tubes...

Dream Mom said...

Thank you both for such nice comments!

Ashley, Dear Son has an AMT (Brand Name)Mini button (as opposed to a Mic-Key). His size is 12 FR x 4.0. It's a low profile button.

There are two types of Mini buttons by AMT: a Mini button and a Mini-"One". I use the Mini button which is really easy to hook the extension tube on it; I don't care for the Mini-One-it's a universal button that can use both AMT extension tubes and Mic-Key extension tubes. AMT pushes the Mini-One; it's my understanding that they were losing market share to the Mic-Keys so they developed a universal button that can take either extension tubing. I found the Mini-One very difficult to hook the extension tubes in whereas the Mini was a breeze!

Ashley's Mom said...

Thanks! My Ashley has the Mic-key, and I thought your's son's looked a little different. I will check out the AMT brand.

Anonymous said...

I have totally enjoyed looking at the trip photos. Dear Son looked like he had a blast. What makes me so happy is that you and his dad got to witness his happy time together with him as a family...

Flygirl1 said...

I love the pictures of your DS by the pool. He looks so relaxed and happy in them. They really are great.


Kristin said...

I love the pictures. You guys looks like such a nice family

Anonymous said...

I just wanted to say that you are such an AWESOME Mom and Dear Son is very lucky to have you as his--and you're very lucky to have him as your Son! I don't remember how I came across your blog, but have been following it since. Thanks for sharing Dear Son and your life with him. I'm so glad you had a wonderful (and much deserved) vacation. I keep both of you in my prayers . . .

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