Monday, February 10, 2014

The Verdict

Hey Humble Readers...

Don't fall off your chair... Yes, I'm writing two days in a row. 

Pippin had his speech therapy assessment today.  The speech pathologist had him play with a couple of different toys, and asked me a lot of questions.  What sounds does he make when he's happy?  What types of sounds does he make when he's upset?  Does he like music?  Does he point out his body parts when asked?  Is he a loud little guy or is he quiet?  And on and on and on. 

She was particularly happy that I had brought a video of Pip making some of his usual sounds.  (Thanks again, Rain, for the suggestion!)

At the end of it all, we got her take on things.  Ultimately, it's a good news/bad news situation.  The good news is that we sought intervention early, as many parents wait until their children are three or older to seek help.  There are resources and support available, and we are willing to do the work. 

The bad news is that his speech is categorized as a severe delay, and his understanding delay is considered moderate. 

I have to say at this point that I feel slightly vindicated.  For several months I knew that something wasn't right, but so many people in my life told me not to worry, Pippin would talk when he was ready.  I knew that he was struggling, and I'm glad I pushed to get him assessed.  Trust your mommy-intuition!

The plan, for now, is pretty much centered on my Beloved and I.  We are going to be working on labeling everything in Pip's world... verbally, of course.  We had already been doing this a fair bit, but now it will be a lot more intensive.  The speech pathologist said that we'll be 'giving him the answers' rather than asking the questions (not asking 'what's this?' while holding his cup, but rather saying 'cup' over and over).  We need to simplify our communication with him, from sentences down to key words. 

She said that she really wants to see Pip using more gestures (he has only a handful of gestures that he uses regularly) and she wants him to be a noisier little guy.  We will be working on sounds (animal sounds, car sounds, etc) along with simplifying our communication with him.  Again, these are things were doing already, but just being much more intentional and intensive about it. 

Next, we are on the wait list for a three month program (called It Takes Two To Talk, from the Hanen Center), primarily for the parents, that will give us more in depth tools on how to help Pip.  It won't likely be until May or June before we are able to take part, but at this point I'm just glad that we have some forward momentum. 

Our speech pathologist really gave me a lot of really good feedback, and encouragement.  Ultimately, no one can make a child talk.  It's all about giving him opportunities to mimic and repeat what he hears.  Also, the fact that he doesn't talk is in no way an indication of a lack of intelligence.  He's a bright and curious little boy (I knew that, of course, but it was good to hear an impartial observer say it), and is just slow to talk. 

She's going to be sending a copy of her report to me and to Dr. B, our family doctor.  She told me to call if I ever have any questions, or am in need of suggestions, or just need to bounce ideas off her. 

Overall, I'm pleased with how things went today.  Did I like hearing that Pip's delay is indeed 'severe'?  Not even a little bit.  But I'm glad to know that we have a plan, and are moving forward. 


  1. Hi there. I'm misty a lurker but wanted to chime in.
    Have you thought about teaching him sign language? If so, I suggest Baby Signing Time. My dd was s late talker as week and I used these videos with her. They're great and I wish I had started them sooner.

    1. Sorry for the typos. That will teach me not to proof read.

  2. So glad that the wee mister is going to get the help he needs!! It does suck about the results but I'm confident about you intervening early and using all the resources available to you. Good job on the gut feeling, Mama!


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