Back in September we had a speech evaluation done because Nicholas has not started talking yet. He says Mama and Dada, but very rarely and it started to become a concern of mine. I know most kids his age are little jabber boxes trying to make sense of the world around them and using all the words, but he just isn’t. Most of his communication is by physically showing us what he wants, mumbling with his mouth closed, or crying.
At his 18 month appointment I broght the concern up to his pediatrician who said that if there wasn’t any progress by the age of two then we would start therapy. In those six months he actually regressed. Therapy is mostly done through play, and same with the evaluation. At times it feels as though nothing is really happening, but it’s so good for me to be there and absorb the techniques and language the therapist uses with him so I know how to better help him at home.
After the evaluation we had to wait about 2 months before actually starting therapy because we needed insurance approval. We knew we would get it, because of how low Nicholas scored. I’ll be honest when the therapist said that he would need to test below 7% in order for our insurance to approve him I had a mix of emotions. I prayed that he’d test low enough to get approved, but my heart hurt at the same time because that would mean he is very behind and struggling more than I honestly thought. He tested at 4% in comprehension language and 3% in expressive.
We were sent home that day with a home program which was just basically instructions on what types of games to play, books to be reading with him, and language skills to start working on. We started formal therapy about three weeks ago and even just implementing the practices at home since September and the three weeks in therapy we have seen some improvements. He actually surprised us this week and started saying “sissy” and touches Emilia’s head or points to her when saying it. We weren’t even trying to get him to say it, he just did in the car while she was crying. It is absolutely the sweetest thing ever and it fills my heart with so much joy that he cares for his sister so strongly.
For reference when Nicholas was about 10 months old he would babble and say “mama” and “dada” but he was just babbling. I really don’t believe there was any intention behind the sounds. By 15 months he stopped babbling all together, and started talking/mumbling with his mouth closed. No vowel sounds, no consonant sounds, just mumbling.
I honestly am so nervous to talk about this, because there are so many judgemental moms out there and I don’t think I’m ready for that. I also know though, that sharing our journey with this and how he improves can be extremely helpful to other moms out there dealing with the same thing. So, I’m doing the scary thing, literally have knots in my stomach as I type this out, but nothing good ever comes from our comfort zones. So I’m inviting you in to follow us as we help Nicholas be able to communicate with us better, and start speaking.