During the Chinese New Year, relatives observed that Calder has improved. If you compare how he behaved the previous years, you would realise it's true. This time round, he could actually stay seated for quite a while. He even went up to relatives on his own to wave and say "hi". Previously he was the very restless boy who went up and down the stairs, who kept visiting the toilets and wanting to close their doors.
Recently, I also noticed that he is able to hold on to the "open" button in the lift to let people in. And he no longer fumbles with the tongue in his shoes. This morning, when he took the folded clothes, I thought he was going to throw them into the laundry basket like he usually does with the used ones. But he headed for the clothes cabinet instead and actually put the two shirts into the right drawers. And before leaving for school, he felt his bag and exclaimed "handbook!" (I had forgotten to put it in.) I was very impressed with the alertness of mind and ease of communication despite his limited vocabulary.
Little improvements like these remind me to stay hopeful. Though Calder learns much slower than other children, he does learn. After 7 years, he finally calls me "Mommy". After 4 years of training, he finally figured out how to gurgle. Yes, there are a lot more that he doesn't know, but I must believe with patient expectation that he will get there some day.