More Press For Childhood Speech Apraxia

Yesterday I wandered out to the mailbox to get the mail and wasn't too excited about anything that came. Some bills, lots of junk mail, one paycheck (that was exciting!) and a couple of magazines. Pretty typical day for mail (minus the paycheck). One of the magazines we received was the March edition of Parents magazine. So last night after the kids went down I was cleaning off the kitchen counters and something on the cover of Parents magazine caught my eye. "Does Your Child Have A Speech Delay?" Well obviously I picked up the magazine and checked it out. The more I read the more intrigued I was!! The article was about a family who had a little boy that was 2 and he had a very, very limited vocabulary. Everyone kept telling the parents "Oh, he's just a late talker...he'll be fine". Here's the first part of the article that really got to me because I could identify SO much with their story:

"At age 2, my son, Max, spoke fewer than ten words: mama, dada, wow, oh no, what's that, and hi. Other children his age were stringing together two- and three-word phrases, while he struggled to make simple vowel sounds. His main form of communication was shrieking, hitting and banging his head against the wall. If we happened to put on the wrong video, for example, Max would have a tantrum so intense and prolonged that he seemed trapped in his own hysteria."

After reading this I just began to sob thinking about Peyton and how she has faced (and continues to face) something so similar to this. I remember when she was younger and she'd have these complete meltdowns where she'd be hysterically crying and trying to say something and all I could do was pick her up and try to console her. She was usually so upset that she didn't want to be held or cuddled, which broke my heart even more. I guess reading the part about how it seemed as if this little boy was "trapped in his own hysteria" really brought me back to the early days with Peyton before we knew about the disorder she has. I remember being embarrassed when we'd be with other families because Peyton would have these big bite marks on her arm. People would ask, "Oh my gosh, who bit her???". How on earth do you explain to someone who has a "normal" child that your child actually BITES herself when she gets frustrated because she can't tell us what she wants or needs? Ugh, it just makes me cringe thinking about how unimaginably trapped these kids must feel!

As time has passed and we've watched Peyton make such great progress it has gotten easier to explain to people why Peyton is the way she is. But it's still frustrating if we're at the grocery store, for example, and Peyton's talking or singing and people give us looks like "Why on earth don't you tell your 6 year old to stop talking like a baby?". Granted she's not even 4 and just looks like a 6 year old – it still gets to me sometimes. But then I have to remind myself that people don't know our story and I'm sure they wouldn't be staring if they knew all the details. Sometimes I really struggle with why God would put someone so young and innocent through something like this. Obviously God has a bigger and better plan for Peyton than any of us can ever even imagine, but some days it sure is hard to trust in Him and be patient to see the great things Peyton will accomplish through all of this.

The moral of my unintentional rambling post is, if you get Parents magazine, check out the article "Talking Trouble" on page 42. It's a great story and it also has some helpful information as to the different type of speech disorders there are out there.


Kelly said...

I haven't cracked open my Parent's magazine yet that came this week, but I will be sure to read this article. I am always so amazed at the strength both you and Chad contineu to have through all you have been through with Peyton. It is because of your hardwork and never willing to take no for an answer that Peyton has made the progress she has. She is so lucky to have you as parents. She is such a special person to all of us and there are very big plans for her that God has. I can't wait to see what they are. And without her who would be Colin's Valentine :) Thanks for sharing this.

PhilandTheresa said...

You and Chad should be so proud of yourselves for what a great job you have done with Peyton. I know that is not why you wrote your blog, but it is so true. You are patient with her and realize that she needs to learn at her own pace, not that of another child. I am truely inspired by watching you guys parent her, you do an amazing job with her. I know the Lord has an amazing plan for Peyton, and I am excited to watch it unfold!!
See you in 4 hours for PF!!!

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