Wednesday, August 5, 2009
I will still hope
This last week has been fairly emotional for me. Nothing specific has happened – no big crisis or anything. But I have been thinking a lot about Matt’s communication. Last week I was looking forward to attending the second level training in Makaton Signing; yet at the same time I was also quite angry about having to go.
I really am thrilled to be finding a way of opening the door of communication to Matt. I love it every time he makes a sign. I love it – with a deep and wild joy!! I love the connection. But another part of me is not ready to accept the fact that Matt might not be verbal. I am such a verbal person. My life makes sense when I talk. My profession is about talking and listening. I build friendship through words – giving them and receiving them. Some people connect with others through touch, or doing something together – I connect through talking. It seems so crazy to me that I should have a child who might not talk.
My husband was wonderfully supportive, allowing me to vent and reminding me about how well Matt is doing. The truth of his words became clear for me on Saturday during the training session. I met a mother of a 5 year old who couldn’t speak; although he understands a lot. He hasn’t learnt to sign or communicate through gestures. He doesn’t even point – but if he wants something he will push his mom towards the thing that he wants. He is quite strong and as he is getting older it is getting harder for his mom to cope. This mother’s strength in such trying circumstances really touched my heart. And it also made me realise how much I truly have to be thankful for. Gratitude really does bring me back to earth again, and plants my feet firmly on the ground.
Yet, although I have accepted many things about Matt’s syndrome, I am still not ready to accept the thought that he might not speak. I still pray that he will. But I won’t let it dominate my life, and I won’t let it rob me from fully enjoying every communication moment with him.
But I will still hope…
Here Matt is signing KISS -he is facing away from Lloyd;
but making the sign in the mirror so Lloyd can see.
Then he turns and does exactly what he signed.
A precious kiss for his dad.