Claire Wiegand's Story: 1990 - 1991
At one year, Claire still wasn't talking or imitating or walking. She was still a friendly, happy baby though. This was a busy year. Claire was evaluated by Riley Hospital's Newborn Followup Program at 12 months, by her pediatrician with a Denver screen at 13 months, and by Riley's Child Development Center at 17 months. She received several hearing tests, a vision test, a CT scan, an MRI and a urine test. Upper and lower gastrointestinal tests revealed a weak esophogeal sphincter and slow gastric emptying. She began physical therapy once a week, and was fitted for orthotic casts. At 19 months, her little sister Jill was born, and Claire showed lots of interest in her. She particularly enjoyed putting her finger in the baby's mouth when Mommy wasn't looking. Claire continued to drink high calorie formula from a bottle and had very little appetite for anything beyond some finger foods. During this year, Claire developed the ability to hug, point, push buttons, turn a page in a book, use sign language for "More," put simple puzzles together, take lids off and put them back on, and to play with toys appropriately. We see now that she peaked functionally by her second birthday, when she learned to walk independently and say two words: "Gog" (Dog) and "Aguh" (Again, as in "Please read the book again"). However, she was already starting to lose her happy demeanor and her interest in toys.
Copyright © Deborah Schilling/Thomas Bundy