The really, really good news: Max has been trying to say more stuff lately.
The hard part is that a lot of times, we're not sure what he's saying. Yes, we can dash over to the iPad and try to get him to show us with the Proloquo2Go app, but that's not always practical and sometimes, honestly, I just want to figure it out myself.
Today, we had a bunch of friends over for a barbecue, and Max was standing by the swingset.
"Aaaaaay," he said, pointing to the wooden frame of the set.
We were all stumped.
"Aaaaaay," said Max. "Aaaaaaay! Aaaaaaay! Aaaaaaay!"
These are the moments when I get really frustrated with myself. Shouldn't I be able to get what my own child is saying? Where's that maternal instinct?
It's painful when a child who has so much trouble with speech is trying so, so hard to tell you something, and you're not able to understand. Sometimes, I wing it. "Yes, Max!" or "Oh, wow!" I'll say, hoping he'll repeat himself so the next time I'll catch it. I feel a little bad about pretending, but it feels even worse to not comprehend what Max is attempting to tell me. Once in a while, Sabrina jumps in and translates. She's a little better at it than Dave and I are.
Suddenly, though, I got what Max was saying. And I couldn't stop grinning. The frame of our swingset forms the shape of the letter "a," the second letter in Max's name. He's gotten really into in spelling out his name.
Later, he showed us an "x." Not sure what he's going to do for an "m" but I'll bet he comes up with something.
I'm hoping that, with time, Max's speech gets more intelligible. Years ago, when Max was around three, I asked our pediatric neurologist if he thought Max would talk. He said yes, he would, and that he would sound like a deaf person. That's true, except Max doesn't sound nearly as clear. Manipulating his tongue to say consonants is really hard for him. He has "m" and "r" down pat, and "x" and "g" more or less, and on occasion I've heard a "b" and "d," but there are several consonants I have yet to hear, including "c" and "f" and "p" and "s."
But I have hope. Lots and lots of hope.
How is your child's speech coming along?