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Tuesday, February 07, 2012

Speech & Language Differences

I know I shouldn't compare Kayla and Lucas. Even if Kayla didn't have Down syndrome you shouldn't compare your children. Although who really sticks to that? If you have more than one child don't you just naturally compare when one walked compared to the other? What age one child started speaking compared to the age your other child started speaking?

Maybe it's not so much that I'm comparing as it is that I'm just noticing the differences. And it's hard not to notice the differences. Things just seem to come so much easier to Lucas. And I guess by saying Lucas what I really mean is any typically-developing child. I feel like I haven't really had to teach him anything ... he just picks it up. He picks it up by figuring it out himself, by observing, by watching Kayla. I've always been amazed by his fine- and gross-motor skills, problem- and thinking skills, speech and language skills, memory, etc. And I'm not trying to imply that he's some uber-kid who is light years ahead of his peers - not at all. I'm sure he's pretty typical with his development. But that development just seems so obviously different than Kayla's development and how much more she has to work to learn things. How much more repetition she needs.

Over the past few months Lucas has been telling me an ongoing story about when he goes to Chicago and stays in his own hotel (stemming from our trip to Chicago a few months ago). He'll bring it up every once in awhile, especially when we're out shopping. He'll point to things and say, "I'm going to have this at my hotel in Chicago and this and this and this..." Even today when I picked him up from preschool he asked what I did and I told him I went to the grocery store. He started in again about when he gets to Chicago he's going to have to go shopping "at WalMart, Publix and CVS. Then we're going out to eat somewhere, but not in the hotel. Kayla's going to have chicken and I'm going to have chicken with A1 but ketchup for Kayla. And you can have a sandwich and daddy can too. And hmm what else? Green beans and the lellow (he still pronounces it that way) ones. And then I'm going to make soup for tomorrow. Soup with garbanzo beans because you like those kind in your soup. And sausage, but the sausage isn't going to be in the soup."

And he can just go on and on telling these elaborate stories. And I love listening to him and his imagination and his vocabulary.

In the back of some magazines there is usually a section about kids saying the funniest things, or kid bloopers (something to that affect) and it seems like almost every day Lucas says something I feel like I could send in.

It seems like there is this stark difference with the things Kayla says, or doesn't say. She doesn't often say things that make me shake my head and wonder just how did she come up with that? And sometimes that makes me sad. It makes me feel like I missed out on that part of childhood with her - that part where the most hilarious things come out of a child's mouth.

Of course I appreciate all those milestones she meets knowing how much harder they come ... but sometimes ... I wish they just weren't so hard.

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Alyson said...

Yup. I know exactly what you mean. My Noah (5 with DS) is getting passed up speech wise by Seth who just turned 2. Oh, how I'd love to hear those silly baby words coming out of Noah's mouth. But then again, I wouldn't change his gravelly little laugh or his enormous full-face smiles for all the tea in China. One day at a time, one day at a time. :) Hugs.

Anonymous said...

It never is easy. siblings are different as they should be. but I understand where your thoughts are coming from... love mom

Mom24 said...

I love these posts Michelle, so honest and true.

To Love Endlessly said...

I never really realized how much Marissa has had to overcome and then we had the twins and everything is just easier for them. I, too, wish things weren't so hard for our girls too! hugs mama!!

Not a Perfect Mom said...

I've been wondering that with Brooke now that she's 2...if she's going to go through the silly phase...and if she'll have the imagination I see in the other kids

Jaida said...

Oh, I so relate. Now that my daughter is becoming so verbal it really brings into focus how *non* verbal Pacey has been. He makes progress, albeit slow, but it is so hard for me to be patient and I sometimes feel sad for what I've missed with him too. On better days that's easily counteracted by the extra things I get in him, but I think it's ok to feel sad sometimes too.

It feels disloyal in a way, but sometimes it is almost a relief to see how easily and naturally my daughter is developing. Even though I know Pacey's challenges aren't a direct result of any lack in parenting skills on my part, it's nice to see the validation in her progress too.