Yesterday Freya picked up her box of watercolour pencils and drew a lovely sketch of a gum tree. She used various shades of brown and grey to recreate the contours of the branches and bark. Not a remarkable effort for most girls, but for us it's something we were delighted by. For one, it is the first time since her surgery she has shown much interest in art - she has not had the concentration or interest to do any drawing, something she previously enjoyed and was very good at. Just as heartening is that the drawing is further indication that Freya's left hemisphere is reorganising to take over the tasks of her disconnected right hemisphere. The right hemisphere is responsible for visual and spatial skills and it is generally considered that creativity, visual arts and musical talent are all right hemisphere skills. Unfortunately, there has been no improvement in her singing voice which is just as ordinary as ever - I don't think we can blame the encephalitis or hemispherectomy on this though, given the appalling lack of vocal and muscial talent in her gene pool.
Last Wednesday (Australia Day) was Freya's 12th birthday. She declared it her best birthday ever. It was a great day, she was thrilled with her presents and was happy all day. It is wonderful to see the improvement in her mood and a corresponding willingness to try doing things with one hand that she said were "too hard" just a few weeks ago.