Shairbearg’s Blog

Jack’s Speech

Posted on: May 14, 2010

In Canada, we have a year off for maternity leave, so we only have to leave our babies when they are 1 year old.  I took full advantage of that with my first son, Jack.

When I went back to work, at 1 year, he was ahead in his speech development and I never thought we would have any difficulties with him at all.  I was back at work for 9 months, and when I got him back his speech was significantly delayed.  It wasn’t that he went backwards, it was just that his speech development had significantly slowed.

I tried bringing him to my doctor, but at the time, Jack was so shy that the doctor never really heard him speaking anyways, so didn’t notice any problems.  After I had my 2nd baby we were going to the doctor so much that for well baby check ups that Jack got comfortable.  This is when the doctor realized what I was trying to tell him, and took swift action.

I was then sent to a pediatrician for analysis.  Unfortunately for me, it took us a long time to get an appt, and when we did they scheduled it for Jack’s naptime and lunch time.  Also he happened to have an ear infection that day.  It was just a useless visit really. 

The pead came in and got in Jack’s face and yelled “HELLO JACK!!”  It takes Jack a while to warm up to people, and he really wasn’t in a cooperative mood.  So the long and short of it was the pead said he was autistic, and we had to go for an autistic assessment.  I then decided on my own to put him in private speech therapy, and try to get him into the government operated therapy.

We went for the Autistic assessment and they were very impressed with his other skills.  They also confirmed what his father and I already knew.  Jack is not Autistic.  I know several families that have autistic children, and what they experience is not our experience at all.  He is shy.  We are thinking now that the shyness has a lot to do with the speech delay. 

The therapist that we were paying kept telling me Jack was autistic, and a visiual learner.  The visual learner makes complete sense, because so am I.  I also talk with my hands a lot, so this would explain why he always picks up so much more words with me, and didn’t progress as quickly with me not around.  Also when he is learning a new word, he always looks to me to explain it to him.  I stopped bringing him to that therapist as Jack didn’t seem to get much out of it from her, and  I did learn things that helped a lot.

We have now gotten him into the free government paid for program, and have had 2 different therapists.  1 is his assessment therapist, and the other is the one running our group sessions right now.  He has connected very well with him, and when I mentioned about the autism that our previous therapist thought he had they both gave me an expression that told me they didn’t agree.

Each week in our group sessions Jack is coming more and more out of his shell, and learning so much.  I am very proud of him.

He is learning to expand his sentences which has been a long process for us.  Usually if he wants me to help him get the snack cup off the bottom of his water bottle he would say something like “need help?” or “Mommy snack cup please?”.  The other day he said “Mommy, Can I have help with my snack cup please?”  I was so proud and excited.

If you have never had a child with a speech delay it may be hard for you to understand how exciting that is, but for me it was a wonderful break through.  It was also very rewarding for our hard work!


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