Yes, it's that time of year. October is Down syndrome awareness month. In honor of which, I try and post on this blog everyday this month. I have to be honest, every year it gets harder and harder to do this activity. It's been especially hard to find the time to post in general. I think I'm either exhausted from the day or I have other things that are just more pertinent. I love to read other people blogs that have such eloquent words and ideas to convey. Me, well I'm a little rough around the edges.
Nevertheless I will try my best to post something during this month. Although it might seem we only celebrate Maya's life here during October (because I write the most during this month). I live with this extraordinary being and experience everyday the amazing strides she makes. Sometimes she takes a step back here and there and this is also part of the journey. Down syndrome awareness doesn't just happen in October for us. It happens 365 days of the year.
On that note the most amazing things have been happening these last couple of months. Maya is finding her voice. She has started to say words, not just sign them. She says, go, eello for hello, up, uh oh, bye, hi, eedy, for ready, o or no, es for yes, on a daily basis now. The words are starting to add up. I'm having so much fun listening to her.
Just a couple of days ago, she tried to say I love you. In her sweet little voice, she said, "i oove ou". It was so precious. I have been waiting to hear that for so long. It's true I had to prompt her, but the fact that she is trying to repeat words that I'm asking her to say...well let's just say it is amazing!
Since Maya is starting to repeat words, now you can almost do what you would do to a one year old, act like you are talking to them. When they babble, you say, "yes, oh really? uh huh." Today I heard our respite do that with Maya. It was the first time I've heard someone talking to her like that.
Some might ask, did you talk to her all this time? Did you encourage her to say words? Has the sign language gotten in the way of her progression? The answers are yes I spoke to her, I encouraged her countless times, I sang to her, I asked her to sing to me, I told her use your words, say this, say that. As for the sign language, well, I don't think it's gotten in the way. I think it's helped us all get along better, she can communicate to me, to her respite without throwing a tantrum.
Sometimes it's not just what we do to push them along, it's when they are ready to make that step, when they do it. Of course the therapy is priceless, but I know Maya, and when Maya is ready that is when she makes her move. At that time, like all other children, she shines.