Jackson didn’t babble much as a baby. While his friend’s were squealing and making all kinds of racket, Jackson sat back and let it all soak in.
As a toddler he’d learn a new word and say it constantly for weeks. Then he’d suddenly stop. He did that with Mama, Dada, bye, hi, up, down, more and uh oh. It was so strange to hear him say a word for so long and then it vanish from his vocabulary. I went months without hearing the word Mama.
This week our speech therapist said it’s typical for kiddos with Apraxia to do what Jackson’s done – repeating words consistently only to stop saying them. Now that we have an Apraxia diagnosis things are making a lot more sense.
Jackson knows what he wants to say but interference between his brain and mouth make it difficult (sometimes even impossible) to get the words out.
When you ask him to repeat things you can see the frustration written on his face. But if he’s playing and not thinking too hard, we hear random words that just leave us baffled.
The best was the day he said no way Jose after hearing my mom say it.
Or when he said Pop boot when I told him he had boots just like Pop.
The other night as I tucked Jackson in bed, he reached for his special stuffed animal and said Purple.
No matter how the words come, we celebrate.
This past weekend as we drove home we played a little game.
John: Can you say Dad?
Me: Can you say Mom?
John: Can you say Jackson?
And right then and there I heard the most precious sound.
Jackson said his name for the first time.
And there was hooping and hollering and celebrating to be had.
Jackson grinned from ear to ear – he knew it was a monumental moment.
And I thanked God for the reassurance that a simple word brings.