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A Leg Up One Leg At A Time

Dressy bessy
Who remembers Dressy Bessy and Dapper Dan?

By Kim Rossi

I thought we could all use a bit of good news. Yesterday, my daughter put on her pants independently. Most would read that simple sentence and imagine a young Mom proud of her toddler wriggling into a pair of Osh Kosh B'Gosh pants. My daughter is over 18. I'm over the hill.

Dressing is a safety issue.  A beautiful woman who can dress herself is a beautiful woman who is not naked twice a day in front of anyone. 

We've been working on Activities of Daily Living for a long time. Since the COVID shutdown, I've been her teacher on top of everything else. And as challenging as distance learning by ZOOM calls was for her staff and my daughter and me, it forced me to follow a curriculum for her. It taught me how to better teach her. Her teachers helped me gain new skills. We've had success in part because I was not rushing to get her sisters ready for their day program at the same time, not making lunches, not packing backpacks and not watching the clock for transportation. Our mornings have been laid back, at least by our standards. I was able to take as much time as needed to help my daughter motor plan dressing.  Next time you put on your pants, count all the steps. It's more than you think.

We'll keep working until we master bluejeans. Hint: the jeans are stiff enough that they stay "open" so that she can insert her leg. I found that if I sit her on a low  bench, she can reach her feet better than if she is sitting on her bed. There's less reaching forward. Less motor planning. So many pieces and parts. This is huge progress for her.

Pants. On. By herself. Osh Kosh... oh my Gosh!



Thank you Kim for sharing this news and reminding me how much I fail to appreciate something so simple. I need the reminders.

Angus Files

Well done you both.

Pharma For Prison


John Stone

Well done Kim!

Cathy Jameson

That is huge! Congratulations to both of you!

Grace Green

Interested in what you say about having more time to teach during lockup. One of the reasons I decided to home educate (many years ago!) was I worked out it would take less time to give them a couple of hours of quality one-to-one, than dress them up and take them out, then home again, twice a day. They themselves spend less time traveling, leaving more time to study. Plus, no visits to the school to argue about all the propaganda they're being taught! Hope you keep enjoying it.


Congratulations Kim!A wonderful success your daughter, after lots of hard work. I'm so happy for you both.

Beleaguered Autism Mom

Bra a! For your daughter and her new found skill. Bra a! To you for teaching her and admitting you needed to be taught and needed enough time to teach. None of which was easy.


Congrats Kim!!! A lot of inadvertent benefits of this lockdown ... perhaps for many more of us as well ...

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