Reflections on Apraxia
My daughter Erica was diagnosed with verbal apraxia in 2009. Since then she has been going for speech therapy weekly and then monthly. We were at her regular monthly session a few weeks ago when I was taken back by something her speech therapist, something that I was so amazed to hear it took a little while to actually sink in and an extra email to confirm that I heard it correctly.
“Erica may not need private therapy.”
It is still taking time to sink in that she could very well be done seeing a private speech therapist. She might not be done speech therapy, but seeing the school speech therapist might be enough to help correct the last few things. Thinking back on all these years of speech therapy and how hard she has worked it seems almost impossible that she is so close to having all of her sounds.
As a parent you try to remember those significant moments in your child’s life, like their first word, their first day of preschool, all the firsts in their life and if you are very lucky you might even catch some of them on camera or video.
Of the things I remember so clearly with my daughter are her first words and there were so many first words. Unlike a child who just picks up speech, every sound was a new first. Hearing her for the first time at one of her early speech therapy sessions say her first word. Practicing over and over again to surprise Mom on Mother’s Day by saying “I love you Mom”, hearing her say her name for the first time. Her finding her “Quack” at a pre-k meeting and telling me about the story the teacher read them. There were so many first sounds, so many first words.
I know that my daughter is one of the lucky ones. She got started with speech therapy at an early age and was diagnosed with apraxia early. We still practice the few sounds she needs to improve but it looks like the majority of the hard work is to learn to talk is behind her.
I wanted to post a couple of videos of her so you can see her progress over the years. I am extremely thankful for all the help she has gotten and how hard she has worked to learn so much. If she can conquer this she will be able to do anything in her life.
Video taken in 2010 just after she started to learn how to say her first name.
Video taken in 2013. Lots of improvement over the years.
Congratulations sweet heart you did it!