Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Baby Steps

Last week, J began speech therapy. I've mentioned things a bit before, but the long and short is that he's almost 17 months old and really doesn't say any real words. He sort of says "mama" and "dada", and he makes repetitive noises ("babababababa", etc.). He understands quite a bit, but those actual words have yet to really form. So we had him evaluated, and the conclusion came out that he has some delays and would benefit from some extra help. Last week he met with his two therapists (one every other week so he has someone working with him once a week), and he responded to them very well, even hugging the one at the end of the session. He just knows people come to play with him; he doesn't realize he's getting help with his speaking. My mom also sat in on the one session: He has to meet his ladies at day care, so we don't get to see what they do, unfortunately (we trade notebook entries back and forth), so it was terrific for mom to observe and take copious notes. We have a little "homework" to work on with him, mainly repetition of just a few words and signing.

Well, two days ago at dinner, I repeated the word "more" numerous times and did the sign for it before I would give him more mac & cheese (always helps to use a much-desired food!). I showed him what to do and put his own little hands together to make the "more" sign. Lo and behold, he did it himself and after a brief explosion of delight on my end, I passed out the desired mac. He seemed to begin to comprehend the connection, but I figured it would come slowly. Next morning, before he even came downstairs, he began signing "more" to T for his morning Cheerios! The kid has picked up the sign with a vengeance.

This makes me so incredibly happy--he's realizing he can communicate with us to get what he wants. The words will come (we still say "more" about a zillion times when we sign and talk to him) next and when he's ready, with a little help. J may not take the "usual" trajectory of talking that other kids do, but he's making progress a day at a time, going at his own pace, and, again during this holiday season, I am so utterly thankful.

Oh, and he knows where his tummy is: Just ask, and he'll yank up his shirt and slap his round little toddler gut. It's the best.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

If anything can help someone make a change, that something is food.

WAIT! I mean love.

But food helps.

I'm so glad to read that you're all making progress. LOVE!