I have written before about apraxia of speech which in simple terms means Thorin knows what he wants to say but he has difficulty organizing his thoughts and communicating them.*
True understanding takes time, patience and some help. We live in a do-it-faster-sort-of-world. As a result Thorin is often left out of the conversation. It’s a shame because he has such great thoughts.
Recently,I posted some of his stories and drawings** but what I have never posted is how he gets to the end product. He gave me permission for the first time to post how he does that– so today I am sharing that process with you. It takes 8:41 minutes. I think it’s worth it.
I think it’s interesting that there’s a clinical term for this. It takes Miles a very long time to answer “yes” or “no” questions. Sometimes, we’ll tell him to stay in silence until he can gather his thoughts. He ignores us and gives pieces of ideas that, at times, I have to process for days; or my husband will relay something Miles said that brings it all together. Miles’s pediatrician recommended that we take him to a speech therapist. The therapist said that his speech would become clearer with age and practice. So far, he’s hit the targets, but I still have to “translate” for him when people grow impatient.
I thought it was cool that Thorin told his story from beginning to end. Miles literally started doing that on Saturday! He told me several ghost stories on the way home from visiting family (several means that one story had a ghost dog, the next had a ghost gorilla, and so on). It was the first time that he didn’t start in the middle of his thought leaving the listener disoriented.
I have a friend who told me that it’s always useful to understand that no child is born fully formed; they’re all developing. I think “development” is a term rarely used these days, and it should be.
I love your perspective! And the stories about Miles is affirming for me. Development with Thorin is almost always accompanied by the word “delayed” unfortunately. Not by us but by THEM. We have to get these boys together– imagine the stories!
It’s helpful to remember that these “specialists” are often contained in their own narrow worlds convinced that their expertise gives them the authority to define any and everything. We’re all supposed to merely do as we’re told by experts. See ourselves through their angle of vision. I told you about the nurse who let a teacher tell her how the nurse’s daughter could describe herself. I describe my own team of doctors as “the crew that has not offended me once;” that’s what makes them amazing. My first rule in dealing with any of these “specialists” is, “Thou shall not insult me.”
Too, I’m sure Miles’s doctors would try that whole “delayed” thing on me, but I have such an uninviting and confrontational posture that they choose differently. Protecting your child’s soul is hard work, and I don’t mind it. Neither do I mind having doctors, nurses, and teachers find me unapproachable or mean. I’ve got great friends, I don’t need anymore.
I feel the same and acted accordingly but it took too big a toll on Thorin who just wanted to learn. When we left school we did not retreat but forged a new path. It has been amazing working with the Systems in the world (as opposed to the School) Here in the World they have been uniformly good. The see us as consumers they want to work with. The School saw us as burdens they could do without. We like it out here much better:)
Well, so we have a snotty Cocobot who knocks people out and eats yukki poop, a villain with malodorous feet – or is that a Villaine – and a screaming “strong female protagonist” – all senses assailed ! This is 3D with a whiff, for sure.
Thorin already knows that you can be bad without hurting people physically. How profound!
What a wicked laugh he has!
I didn’t pick up on “all senses assailed”. I like how his mind works:)
I really loved the vision of the Stinky Foot. When I visited last week he talked about the fact that the foot could turn into the Hulk (a WHOLE Hulk not just a Hulk foot by the way.)
That’s some foot:)
It took me years to learn how to work with my daughter who had apraxia. You’re way ahead of the game. There’s so much joy in your video.
Thank you for telling me that: many days I feel behind the curve — that I should be better.
One of my friends who recently became an SLP said she learned little about apraxia and usually related to older adults (people who had strokes) and nothing about how to work with children with apraxia. It takes patience and time. You’re setting a great example.