If you were curious about who wins the "Most Incredible Mom Award" then I can answer that. It's Annie. She sealed the win today when she put Nate's trach back into his neck while standing hunched over in our van on the freeway. Somehow Nate's trach popped out while we were heading to my parent's house and as you can imagine, the situation needed to be handled fairly quickly.
And yes, I was pulling over to the shoulder but she got to work right away and was done by the time I stopped the car.
This last week we spent some time in Utah. I was going to say we were on vacation in Utah but vacation felt like it didn't convey the sense of exhaustion and manual labor that was our permanent companion. Can you really have a vacation with a 5 year-old? I would submit that you cannot. That doesn't mean it wasn't a great time though.
For example, we had a really great time up at Snowbird. We were able to participate with a charity called Wasatch Adaptive Sports which helps kids like Nate have a day of fun activities in the mountains. Nate was able to ride a sled, go on a mountain tram, hike a little and even do some fishing.
The most delightful thing about 5 year-olds you ask? That's easy, it's their sense of humor which consists of doing the opposite of whatever you tell them and thinking it's the funniest thing ever. For example, asking Nate to look at the camera for a picture.
Hey Nate, it's only funny when grown men do this to their wives.
We did some hiking first. Or at least Annie and I did. I don't know what the heck Nate was doing. Maybe he saw a bear?
No big deal, just two cool dudes taking a walk.
"Hey Nate, look at the camera. Very funny, now stop closing your eyes and look at the camera. Nate! Open your eyes and look at the camera buddy. LOOK AT THE CAMERA OR SO HELP ME I WILL LEAVE YOU AT THE TOP OF THIS MOUNTAIN!!!"
Next up was Nate's second favorite activity. The Alpine Slide. He was nervous at first but Nate is an adrenaline junky at heart and we knew he would love it. You are able to control the sled with a throttle. I asked Nate to tell me when to go faster or slower. Every word out of his mouth was "faster!".
Then we got to go on a sled rollercoaster thing. Nate was not very patient on the way up to the top of the hill. He saw someone else (roughly were we are in this picture below) hit the part where you finally start going down and picking up speed and his comment was, "He's having fun, let's go where he's going." We did, and it was fun.
Nate on the tram. Every time we hit one of the tram towers it would speed up and Nate would melt into a pile of glee.
Finally it was on to fishing. Nate loved, LOVED, the Alpine Slide but when fishing came around, he found his true love. After having the pole in the water for about 2 minutes Nate had caught his first fish. I can't tell you how excited he was. It was hands down his favorite activity. I'm glad he likes fishing because it's something he can do since it only requires sitting on the shore for hours holding a pole. If a fish ever took his bait he would lose the pole but my experience is that fishing is a government scam to sell licenses since I've never actually caught anything. In fact, I don't think fish even exists in the wild.
This "fishing pond" for example is loaded with fish that they TRUCK IN every spring. We could have just as easily caught a fish at Walmart.
But the bottom line is, Nate had a blast.
Until the fish got too close. When the fish wasn't moving he was fascinating but as soon as it starting thrashing 2 feet from his face...he wasn't so sure he liked the up close and personal aspect of catching the fish.
He did however want to sit by that pond all day with his pole in the water.
It was great but exhausting. We love doing things like this but I wonder how much longer we will be able to. Most of the things we did required me to be able to man-handle Nate and the 3 bags of equipment that always have to accompany him. He's getting bigger and heavier and I hope that we can keep finding ways to keep out in the world and experiencing these things.
This was a lot of fun and we are so grateful that organizations like this are out there. It does a lot to help kids like Nate to do things they wouldn't otherwise be able to do. Not only does this organization provide the basic activities that we had fun with but they help kids like Nate do things like biking and even skiing. I hope we will always be able to keep Nate active and involved in the world around him.
Wasatch Adaptive Sports is worth checking out http://wasatchadaptivesports.org/