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SLP Mommy of Apraxia: First professional CAS presentation

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

First professional CAS presentation

I stood waiting 30 minutes early to enter the room.  The room where I would present information on my personal and professional experiences and knowledge about Childhood Apraxia of Speech for the first time at a professional conference.

As the door opened, people started clammering for a seat.  I looked around thinking to myself, "are they sure they know they are coming to see me?"  I took my place at the front and started to set up my power point presentation.  My cousin, and SLP from a neighboring school district found me and gave me a much needed hug and wished me good luck.  It wasn't long before the room was so full that the side door had to be opened.  People asked me if I could request more chairs.

I started to feel sick and any hunger feeling I did have during this brief lunch break was long gone.

Soon, people crowded in and just sat on the floor.  They sat in front and in back, and pulled up chairs in the back and side hallway.  I found my mentor in the hallway and leaned on her shoulder proclaiming I was about to be sick.   With a reassuring pat she sent me back in ordering I save her a chair in front.

Soon the announcer came up to introduce me.  Nervously I chatted with him stalling for time.  As he said my name I experienced an almost out of body experience.  I heard him in the background, but I thought of Ashlynn.

I thought of the two boys I had treated with apraxia before her, and how they came to me nonverbal in Kindergarten. I suddenly remembered that I'm giving this talk so that another child with apraxia doesn't have to wait longer than they have to to find their voice.  To say their name.  To tell their parents they love them, or even call their parents by name.  I realized  I have an audience of well meaning, awesome professionals who wake up each morning and help children find their voice and I have first hand experience and professional experience on how to help them make that happen. It was clear from the number in attendance that they want to know more; so, with a big breath I began my presentation drawing strength from my little ones with apraxia who have to be braver than me in that moment,  EVERY moment of their young lives on their journey to find their voice.

If the email inviting me back for next year is any indication, I hope I did them all proud.

A link to my presentation is here: Importance of Differential Diagnosis and Treatment Approach in Childhood Apraxia of Speech



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6 Comments:

At February 12, 2014 at 1:39 PM , Blogger M Brunson said...

LOVED reading your presentation! I wish I had been there in person!

 
At February 12, 2014 at 7:07 PM , Blogger Laura Smith said...

Thank you Michelle!

 
At February 16, 2014 at 7:47 PM , Blogger Paige said...

do you have any recommendations for:
1) assessment of apraxia (5th grader)
2) resources for treating CAS in older kids??
i'm a student... doing my practicum hours and it's my first year. let me know if you have any ideas for me. Thanks!

 
At February 16, 2014 at 7:49 PM , Blogger Paige said...

i'm reading your presentation now! it's so helpful!! :)

 
At February 17, 2014 at 3:37 PM , Blogger Laura Smith said...

Oh good! I do have ideas for older children though. My email is laurslpmommy@gmail.com if you want me to help you brainstorm :)

 
At May 11, 2014 at 7:18 PM , Blogger Ami said...

Thank you so much for sharing this!

 

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