Brooklynn’s Story Written by her Mom Tamarah
Brooklynn Ann-Marie Alexander was born on a snowy February morning in 2005 by way of a caesarian section. Upon her arrival it was clear that she was in distress. Her chest was rolling and she could not manage an independent breath. OK, REWIND! BACK UP, PULL THE PLUG (Insert Scratching Record Rewind Sound Here!) Before I proceed to tell Brooklynn’s story, I think it is important that you know a little more about my pregnancy and how her health related concerns came as quite a shock.
Everything was normal throughout my pregnancy with Brooklynn. My doctor had previously delivered two healthy, happy, bouncing babies via Caesarian Section. Other than some basic math related to the circumference of my son’s head and my (HELLO), my children were fine. It was I who remained concerned and wary throughout my pregnancy. I didn’t “feel” the same. I began to feel “empty” inside. Cold, even. My doctor performed tests, measurements, sonograms and all of the things a good doctor should do and did not find any cause for alarm. It wasn’t until the delivery that our journey truly began and my “feelings” were confirmed.
Brooklynn was developmentally delayed and undiagnosed until she was 6. During our journey, B had a string of seizures diagnosed as “Infantile Spasms”, had an under-developed spine and we could not allow her to move very much, has had major digestive issues, has broken 37 pairs of glasses and is followed by many specialists and therapists. Our first conference came just 2 months after her initial diagnosis. It was amazing to meet families like ours. It was wonderful to see a dining room filled with parents chasing their children or trying to coax them out from under tables. We belonged!
Brooklynn has accomplished a lot in her 12 little years. She has learned how to walk, speak in small sentences, sign, go potty, bite, strip and so much more. As I type this now, my hands are marked with scratches since she possesses sensory issues and will not allow me to clip her finger nails.
Brooklynn has two families. She stays with her Dad and Step Mother for school while I travel for work. She stays with me every weekend and on vacations throughout the year. Somehow we find balance. It’s not always harmonious and peaceful and usually one of us is hanging on to the brim of the scale but we manage to find the strength to balance our worlds for Brooklynn and her siblings. We all have stories centered around Brooklynn, and some will stand the test of time. But, I would not be telling Brooklynn’s story if I didn’t share some of them with you!
- Brooklynn on the Run:
While Momma A was upstairs cooking, Brooklynn was to be playing in her room. All of a sudden she heard a panicked voice yelling, “Momma A! Momma A! Help Momma A!” April ran downstairs and found that Brooklynn had started the treadmill and didn’t know how to stop it or get off, so she kept running!
2. “I’m A Big Girl at School”
Brooklynn has many phrases that she likes to repeat. One is that she is a big girl at school. She likes to tell the Chick-Fil-A Cow, Santa Claus, the strange cat lady in line at the grocery store that she is a big girl at school. Being a big girl at school is synonymous with being a GOOD girl at school. One Friday, I walked into the school to pick her up. I was quickly informed that it had not been a good day at school for B and she had removed her clothes. Knowing this information, I walked into her classroom where she sat on top of a table wearing her undies and bra. Here pigtails were lop-sided and frayed and she had something pink smeared all over her hands and face. She had been crying and had clearly removed her clothes. She looked at me and said, “Hi Mom”, as if nothing had happened. I said, “Oh B!” To which she replied, “I’m A Big Girl at School.” Not so much.
During a total fit of rage in Walmart, a lady looked in disgust and actually stepped over B during her fit. I said, “Are you serious right now?” The lady turned back to say something, but when she did, she tripped and fell. Brooklynn cracked up laughing and at that point she decided her fit was over.
- FULL MOON
Yep. She does that when she’s upset. Pants go down, she rolls back and legs go up. She calls it “Baby Bear”.
- EVERYONE NEEDS A HUG
That means the man in line at McDonalds too.
- Ho Ho in the House!
Nope, not a rap song. I was changing for a wedding when B came into the bedroom super excited to tell me “Ho Ho in Howww”. I asked, “Santa is in the house?” She said, “Uh-huh!” I agreed with her considering she has a life-sized Santa in her room year-round. When I didn’t rush out to see Ho Ho, she grabbed my hand and said, “mere Momma! Ho Ho in Howwww!” Again I didn’t move, and just agreed with her. After three attempts I decided to go along with it, only to find she had let a MAN into the house. He had a red shirt and a white beard. I screamed and ran! I yelled for my boyfriend, got dressed and confronted the man. Fortunately, it was my boyfriend’s uncle. The man said, “She let me in the house, but I think she thinks I’m Santa Claus!” B nodded emphatically!
So our girl B has had some health scares and more than her fair share of meltdowns. Each day is a bright new day filled with hope. Some days are filled with hugs from a big girl at school while other days may include a Jaws Attack. I like to think of 1p36, and Brooklynn, not as a problem to be solved, but rather as a mystery to be discovered.
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