Hunter is my youngest. When I was pregnant with him, I almost lost him in the beginning and at the end we found out he may or may not be born with downs syndrome(they were almost positive he wouldn’t be but they couldn’t rule it out).Luckily, he was not. About 3 months old, I started noticing things but kept saying he is just slower than the other two. At about 9 months, I realized my gut was right. He was delayed but there was definitely something different about Hunter. The doctor recommended Early Intervention and I fought my husband to get him the services (he was in denial). My father in law doesn’t speak. Never has. They thought since he was little that he was deaf (turns out he wasn’t and that the doctor didn’t know why he couldn’t speak). He has his own language that only his wife and kids and siblings can understand. I knew I didn’t want him to end up like him. So I began to fight for Hunter to be heard.
I just happened to see our local news broadcast on apraxia and swore it sounded like what my father in law had. I mentioned the word to my OT who got us a speech eval with an awesome speech therapist that knows apraxia (ironically, the same woman on the news broadcast about apraxia and then our speech therapist for almost 2 yrs after). About a year later, we got our diagnosis. We have been lucky in having amazing and supportive therapists… and when we weren’t that lucky, I fought to get the people in that saw the spark in Hunter and wanted to get that spark going. It hasn’t been easy in slightest bit. But that little boy is a fighter and has an amazing spirit and mind just dying to come out. And while we don’t have any consistent words at 3.5 years old- we do have glimmers of hope where full words come out and his signing is getting so much better. I know if we keep up our fight- he will get there.
Until he finds his voice, I will be there to fight for him to be heard.