When I first had Georgia I didn’t know what you were supposed to do as a mom. I didn’t know what was expected of a new parent. I remember thinking I am not “baby talking” with her; I am just going to talk normal to her straight from the start. When her peers started making words and my baby didnt I remember thinking OMG this is my fault.
I contacted talk with me with suspicions of hearing issues (contrary to what others thought). I attended the parent talk with me class to learn how to play, build on words, use really simple techniques to build your child’s speech.
Finally we got her hearing tested and sure enough she needed bilateral tubes.
So while we waited. ….
Because our healthcare system is broken.
I learned baby sign and taught it to Georgia. She learned what the signs meant and modeled them back. Good bye irrational tantrums. I highly recommend baby sign– it worked tremendously well with Georgia.
I found a private SLP and we paid her to work with Georgia while we waited to get in to Horizon Health SLP. Now we are lucky we had the means to hire privately because not everyone is so lucky.. I know this. If we were unable to hire privately I would have just made a routine at home where we purposely worked on speech for a block of time X/ week. We worked with Georgia at home every chance we got. Mimicking what we saw the SLP do.
This SLP recognized that there may be something on top of the blocked hearing going on. She was the first person to utter the word “autism”. I was furious. Not my kid.. No way.. Like she didn’t even have her first set of tubes at this point– this lady was jumping the gun.
Then we finally got into Horizons Medicare covered speech therapy and carried on. I got over my hurt feelings and decided to have the developmental team assess G. Not really sure which way it was going to go. She was only two for goodness sake.
She was assessed on her top skills first (things she didn’t have any issues with) such as fine/gross motor skills and sensory stuff. Her problem areas were assessed when she was tired at the end of the day.
I have flip flopped over the past months/years whether it was a true diagnosis but you just suck it up and do whats best for your kid.
For us that meant getting discharged from proper speech therapy (Georgias only problem area is speech) and starting the process with stepping stones. Only to get transferred to AIS before therapy even started. Then getting lost in the shuffle of the transition.
This mom had to march into that office of AIS and shed some tears to get the ball rolling.
This meant 3 months with absolutely no therapy except what we worked on at home. Back to private speech therapy we went. And we keep Georgia in speech therapy to this day because that is what she needs most.
Today we had her transition meeting for kindergarten. My god I am proud of her… proud of us.. we made it. My kid is ready for kindergarten. I bet you she will even do better than some “neurotypical” kids because of her exposure to daycare/preschool. I sat at that meeting and I was so proud. She has come such a long way. Lots of advocating, lots of work, lots of planned play.. But we did It!
This was my first struggle as a mom. I know everyone has their own stuff… My advice is be open to what people are telling you. Shutting your eyes to an issue your baby is having will only cause more heartache in the future.