Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Let's Talk

Some of you may have noticed that I have never posted anything about Kelty's speech, words or sounds ... well, that's because our little stinker isn't talking yet! Yup, almost 21 months and the extent of his vocabulary are noises like, "uh", "ah", "mmm", "pa", "da", "ma" ... that pretty much sums it up. So let's talk about it.

At Kelty's 18-month pediciatric appointment I discussed our concerns about his speech development; the pediatrician didn't seem too concerned as it's not uncommon for boys to talk later. To ease my mind he referred Kelty to Audiology for a hearing test and to EDIS (Early Intervention Services) for an assessment. Audiology result came back fine and because Kelty's non-verbal communication and cognitive skills were so high he didn't qualify for services with EDIS. The folks at EDIS did however work with the pediatrician to get Kelty referred to a speech pathologist.

We've been working with a wonderful speech pathologist at Lanstuhl Regional Medical Center for a couple weeks now and Kelty responds so well to her! She is actually blown away by Kelty's cognitive skills .... he just needs a little boost with his verbal communication. She has not "diagnosed" him with any oral-motor or auditory-processing disorders and I am not looking for or want a diagnosis ... so don't worry! I do believe that children are "over-diagnosed" and "labeled" way too early and too often ... don't get me started on that topic! But anyway ...

We are using a few different techniques with him during his sessions and at home and they seem to be working very well: Communication Temptation, Auditory Bombardment and Imitation of Oral Movements. She also recommended a few specific books which we FINALLY got in the mail!

So that's the story on the surface. Let me tell you how I really feel ...

Nothing breaks my heart more than watching my baby struggle to communicate ... he gets so upset when he can't get the words out ... you see the intensity behind his eyes but the sounds aren't making their way out of his mouth. He usually breaks down and cries ... which makes me cry.

I'm a stay-at-home mom .. it's my job to teach and educate our child ... let me just tell you what a hard blow it to see your child struggle with a developmental milestone ... can we say self-blame and guilt?! I beat myself up every day ... what am I doing wrong, what am I not doing right, I must not read to him enough, I'm not able to "teach" my child, I haven't kept him interactive enough with kids his age ... and the list goes on. I know I shouldn't feel this way but, well ... I do. Why is it that a stranger, our speech pathologist, can get him to make sounds that I can't? Let me tell you ... this is a hard thing to swallow!

So there you have it! We have a smart little tot that struggles every day to communicate verbally ... breaks my heart ... but I've put it out there.

Waiting for his appointment ... eating blueberries

Hooray! It's time!
We have a few video's of our exercises but our "upload" speed is so slow and I haven't been able to post any videos for a few weeks now.


  1. Have you tried frozen blueberries...they are a great treat and Kelty might love them that way!

    Don't beat yourself up. Kelty will be talking up a storm by his 2nd birthday! I'll talk to you more on IM about it all..LOG ON :0)

  2. You're giving him so much love and attention all-day everyday by being home with him. That's something to be proud of and something you can't get from a teacher or doctor. Keep supporting him as he tries to communicate and I'm sure that soon enough you'll be missing these quiet times Hugs to you both!

  3. Boys start to speak later than girls. Interesting.

  4. Hang in there and try not to beat yourself up. You are a wonderful mother! Especially for the fact that you saw an issue and are helping him with it....that's what great moms do!
    Miss you all so much...and thanks for the gift, we got it yesterday!

  5. Big hugs Jaime! The boys lack of speaking is a huge concern to me too. I pulled them out of the Early Steps program b/c the program wasn't doing anything...literally, but every day I second guess myself about that decision. My boys know their letters but I doubt anyone but me would be able to understand them! I'd love to know what books you ordered! To make matters worse, I am an early education/elementary teacher and I still can't get my kids to talk! They will be able to read, but only to themselves!

  6. You have a beautiful son and he has an amazing Mother. PS I love, love, LOVE the kissing pic of you & Al!!!

  7. I think you do an amazing job pretty lady! And it's certainly not a lack of interaction with other children his age. Piper rarely had interaction with other kids (and they weren't often her age) and was speaking in full, comprehendable sentences well befor her 2nd birthday. Sometimes kids just have a little more trouble. You can't imagine what I felt like when Casey was having his eating/weight gain problems. I just felt like it was completely my fault even though the dr kept reassuring me that it wasn't. I'm sure you'll be asking Kelty to "be quite for just a little bit, and give Mommy a break" in no time!


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