My youngest daughter is such a sweetheart. All of my girls are, and I really am proud of all of them, but I don’t talk about my little six-year-old Anna enough.
She’s a charmed soul. She has wit, humor, intelligence, beauty, kindness, and a natural empathy. She’s a people pleaser and a caretaker. She makes me smile more often than not, and is so sensitive and sweet that it’s very touching. She’s hardworking and helps with chores without having to be asked. She’s always thinking of others. I admire her, and I think I would admire her even if she weren’t my child. Of course I’m biased and I recognize that.
I wish I could take credit for raising her so well, but I think she’s turned out well in spite of me. 🙂
She’s in first grade, which is her first exposure to having to be in school all day. She loves it. She does her homework, she works hard, and she gets up bright and early to get herself ready. She even helps get her big sister Gracie ready since they ride the bus together this year.
She’s been having a little trouble with her speech, though. We were told to wait until her front grown-up teeth came in and they have, but she still has the speech issues so I requested an evaluation to help her out with some therapy. During her parent-teacher conference it came up that her reading and writing aren’t quite where they should be although she’s doing a great job in both. We thought that it was connected to her speech patterns since she has to spend more time deciphering words and how she thought they would be spelled based on how she’s been pronouncing them.
Several days ago she told me that she realized her eyes were seeing things fuzzy. It struck her because when she’s sick, things are fuzzier but that things are always fuzzy… especially words and letters. She has trouble seeing the board at school and doesn’t participate as much as she should, and this could a huge piece of the puzzle. We’re getting her eyes tested during the holiday break next week and she’s really excited about the prospect of getting glasses so that she can see clearly. She keeps asking when her eye exam is because she wants to see clearly NOW and wear glasses to school NOW. I’m hopeful that this help her a lot.
And it brings up something else too. Every year when the girls get their annual physicals the pediatrician does a basic eye test with the chart where the kids stand so many feet away. If they’re too young to read letters then they read symbols instead. There’s always a margin for error where the nurse says the kids are still within normal range and not to worry about getting their eyes tested by an Ophthalmologist.
I call bullshit. It’s always bothered me because I keep track of how many my girls get wrong during that basic eye test and they always get more wrong than I’m comfortable with. The pediatrician and nurse always both say, “It’s fine, it’s within normal. They saw the hardest lines and symbols, and they saw the majority.”
Listen. If you have any doubt then get the kids tested by an Ophthalmologist. And once you do, get them tested annually. Especially if a need for corrective lenses runs in the family and on top of it either you or your child’s other biological parent (or both of you) wear glasses. Don’t wait for the pediatrician to say, “It’s time to get their eyes tested.” Just do it. I’m likely going to get Juliana and Gracie’s eyes tested after the New Year when things settle down. Anna is simply more urgent with her eyes right now, especially since she’s also complaining of eye aches and headaches that I think may be related to eye strain.