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SLP Mommy of Apraxia: Don't dare to compare

Monday, November 18, 2013

Don't dare to compare

Ashlynn was my first child.  In a way, it was fortunate I had nothing to compare her to, and in a way, it was unfortunate I had nothing to compare her to.

My son Jace is my second child and is currently 16 months.  He not only walks...he RUNS.  He not only babbles and says words, he puts two and three words together!!  Every time he hits a milestone, my heart bursts with pride; and every time he hits a milestone a tinge of sadness seeps in when I think of just how long it took Ashlynn to do anything he does. 

I hate that.  I hate comparing.  I wish that when someone told me how they know they heard Jace say "what's over there" in his baby jargon that they could understand, I could smile longer than a fleeting moment until I wondered when Ashlynn finally put those three words together.  I wish when someone told me how they swear they heard him singing the ABC's, I could beam with pride longer than a second before my mind swirled to countless days singing ABC's with Ashlynn on the iPad, the fridge toy, the vacuum toy, in the car, while reading a book and still not hearing her be able to say "A."  I wish that when he drank out of a real cup, a straw, a water bottle and looked at me with pride, I could be there only in that moment with him, and not start to think about how Ashlynn still chokes drinking her sippy cup.

These pictures show Jace age 16 months, and Ashlynn age 18 months.  In her picture you can see her open mouth posture (low tone) and also see the flexion in her feet.  She was just barely walking and walked on her toes.  I stretched out her calves everyday in the bathtub. 

It makes me think about a quote from Temple Grandin, "There needs to be a lot more emphasis on what a kid can do, instead of what he cannot do." 

So let me say, even though Ashlynn didn't talk, or sing her ABC's, her sweet smile and bright eyes lit up a room.  Her soft and gentle touch melted hearts, and her giggle was and is still contagious.  She may not have drank from a real cup or a straw, but she would hold out a goldfish to a friend to "share" and she would pat the seat next to her forcing whomever to sit down and enjoy her company. She may not have ran when we went outside, but she would lay down next to me staring at the clouds and sharing a perfect moment in the summer sun.  She may not have told me when she was hurt, but she was the first to look concerned if she thought her dad or I was. 

Yes, there does need to be a lot more emphasis on what a child CAN do, and from now on, I hope to not compare, but to focus on what each child does well!  I'm so proud of them BOTH and I want to be proud of each of them and revel in those moments.






 

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1 Comments:

At November 19, 2013 at 8:19 AM , Blogger M Brunson said...

I LOVE this! I totally understand the feelings, but when you started talking about what she CAN/could do, it instantly brought a smile to my face! Thank you for sharing, it was perfectly written!

 

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