Not gibberish. Not “word approximations” where he makes up random syllables to represent things he frequently encounters in his world.
He uses his words.
“Give Mommy hugs.” “Go night-night.” “Turn lights off.” Not long phrases. He will probably, according to his speech therapist, continue to have a speech delay, but she expects it to be completely resolved by kindergarten. He will qualify for preschool, because my state stops early intervention services at 3 years of age. This is also the age they stop adjusting his developmental age for his prematurity. In January, we will meet to discuss his preschool options.
Preschool. Zachy. Completely unreal.
But he uses his words. And well enough that I feel comfortable starting other things with him, like potty-training, though I completely forget how to do that. I did it once. I’ll figure it out again.
And his voice is such a gift. Each word he says the sweetest sound I have ever heard. He is showing us, once again, the wonder that is the world. My favorite word of all, “Look!”, shows us that he sees something new, something interesting, that he is learning. Everyday, learning more and more.
He still mixes up some sounds. If you ask him his name, he says, “Yack”. His age? “Doo”. I can live with this. He is two. He is not going to be a keynote speaker right now. He may never be. But when you have a child with apraxia, you appreciate each word that is understood, that does not need to be translated. Gone are the days where he could not tell us what he wants or needs, where he would point or grunt, or rattle off indecipherable gibberish that we could not understand, leading to frustration and tears from all involved.
For right now, we are thrilled. He is growing. He is strong and healthy. He is making progress. He is overcoming. He is using his words.