Speech Therapy Has Changed My Daughter’s Life For The Better
At the end of June, I shared my story about how many people misunderstand my daughter Alicia because sheâ€™s introverted. It was amazing hearing from many other parents, some whose children were introverted like mine, and some whose children had been in need of early intervention for a variety of reasons. A common thread in these comments, and something I had already been thinking about, was the possibility of speech therapy. At the time, many of Aliciaâ€™s speech sounds werenâ€™t right â€“ â€œgwocksâ€ instead of â€œblocksâ€, â€œpourâ€ instead of â€œfour.â€ And it seemed to me that this was making her harder to understand than many other three-year-olds.
I couldnâ€™t judge by the example of her older brother, who is among the most verbal kids around. (Sometimes thatâ€™s a blessing, sometimes thatâ€™s a curse!) Ben always wants to tell everyone about everything all the time â€“ and how do you talk about Skylanders or dragons or pirates if the people around you canâ€™t understand what youâ€™re saying? At Aliciaâ€™s age, Ben was talking like some five year olds; he was NOT the example to use of typical language development.
Meanwhile, Aliciaâ€™s talk was almost all self-directed. She would tell incredible stories â€“ but only to herself, which meant there was never a need for her to clarify what she was saying. I kept wondering if her mispronunciations were the result of a lack of practice, or if there was something else going on. So I was pleased that a referral for a speech evaluation came out of her screening, even if I anticipated a lengthy wait before weâ€™d get the phone call.
The first step was an audiology appointment to ensure her hearing was normal. As I had expected, that all checked out. And then, to my great surprise, I got a call from the local speech program â€“ with people away over the summer, we had the opportunity to come in for an evaluation in mid-July. Was I interested? You bet! And I am so glad we were able to accept.