For the past year while all my blog friends and Fenn's birth mates have been talking and talking and doing.. there was a huge gap of that happening over here. At first it was not a big deal, then it got me a little jealous of all the communication you guys were having with your toddlers... and then I became seriously worried and paranoid about it. I will never forget coming home to the baby sitter one night and she told me " He is the MOST silent toddler I have ever been around, I think you need to have him tested"...
And that just opened up a WHOLE other can of worms.. and lots of conflicting professionals and more intense evaluations. I never wanted to talk about until I had some concrete info, and I also was mulling over what kind of privacy I needed to give my boy.
So here we are MONTHS later and I can tell you some updates. Praise GOD there is nothing wrong! All 3 of his current therapists say that he does have a speech delay for unknown reasons and that it would be resolved. They also all THREE told me that his other trouble was BEHAVIORAL. .. ie. my boy was bad! I knew he was kind of wild and just chalked that up to being a 2 year old little boy, but apparently there is a line you can cross there...
Obvi I am leaving out tons of details because this would be a million paragraphs long but the long and short of it is that he was over 2 years old before he ever really started to say any words other than Momma, and he finally started pointing to things as well.
He just turned 28 months old yesterday and he has made great progress in the last few weeks. Here is a quick list to kind of put it into perspective for you. Those if you who have kids his age will def understand more after seeing this list I think.
- He is now pointing and asking for things like milk " ilk" and Juice "jooose"
- He says a few phrases " there it is" "see it" ( pronounced like "sh*t") "here you go", Thank you" " up please" "eat yayaya" "more wafa" ( more waffle).
- He has started using his sign language again as well with more, please, help etc.
- He is following basic commands and instructions
- He totally "gets" what a bribe is now and most times it works. Today I told him, as he was resisting leaving school, if you will stand up, hold my hand and walk like a big boy I will give you a cupcake in the car" and that joker stood up and got to trottin. Then in the care he said " update" which meant "where's my cupcake lady?!"
- He knows his ABC's and numbers and stuff like that and just lately has started saying them out loud. Up until 2 years old I had no idea who knew what anything was because he could not/would not say or acknowledge it, then one day I asked him ( when he started pointing) to show me a " bus" " plane" etc and he did with each one, and same with his alphabet and numbers and all. I was SHOCKED at how much he actually knew about since he was never communicating any of it. Then about 2 months after that he started saying them all.
I really can not put into words how jealous I have been of all you guys out there with talking kids telling you what they think or want and telling you they love you or calling your family members by their names. It has secretly been killing me. When I was watching RHWNJ reunion show and Jacqueline was discussing her son's autism and how he will never be able to tell her he loved her, I cried my eyes out because those were fears of mine during this year of silence as well. It has been a long journey.
So thanks to the great state of Tennessee we are given ( for free) early childhood evaluation and intervention if you qualify for speech therapy and things like that. Fenn has qualified for Speech, Occupational & Developmental Therapies.
The Occupational therapist is working on his food issues, so in social media I call it " food therapy". In reality they cover lots of stuff but that is one of the main focuses for him. At about 1.5 years old he decided to go from " will literally eat ANYTHING" to " will eat nothing" and for a long time would only eat yogurt, then he would only eat "mash packs" ( baby food squeeze pouches) then he only wanted total junk food like ritz crackers, buffalo pretzels and nutri-grain bars.
After a few sessions we have come to see that his issues are more about the appearance of food than the taste. I am not sure what causes this, it does run in the family a little ( picky eaters) but it does absolutely make me crazy. As the mom who breastfed for an eternity and then made home-made baby food forever, the "only wants processed foods" kid should not be MY baby!
I will be doing more blogs about this in the future because I do think it is fascinating and it might be helpful for lots of you guys out there if you struggle with food battles. I also think it is important to sort of speak for " the other side" or kids and families who don't follow the status quo because it would have been great comfort to me this past year having read this kind of stuff somewhere.
I will also cover all the discipline cause that has been a doozy! I can not believe how much I was letting him work me, and how much easier life has been since we got a lot of that under control.
So there is one of several updates and things to come! I am relieved that he is totally OK, and also intrigued by how different kids can be with their development and ways they learn etc. I am AMAZED at how overjoyed we have been hearing him talk these past few weeks and how FUN it is hearing his little jabbers.