K is non-verbal. That doesn’t mean he doesn’t make noises, it just means he doesn’t say words. In his way, K never shuts up! He is constantly making noises, and each of his noises means something. It took most of his 17 yrs for us to figure out what each of them means, and he has been adding new sounds to his “vocabulary”.
K started babbling when he was a baby, just like every other baby. But while other children were turning those babbles into words, K just continued with the sounds. The sounds never came close to words and at the time we thought it was because he was developmentally delayed. We still held on to the hope that one day he would start talking, just like most DS kids it would just take a little longer. So we started speech therapy. We tried everything they suggested but nothing was happening. We tried repeating everything over and over “bath” “banana” “Mama” “Dada”, etc. Small words. Words we used every day. All we got in return was “Baba”. It actually became his school nickname because he said it so much!
When he wasn’t babbling he was humming or “mooing”. Always some kind of sound. We got to know that if he was quiet he was either asleep or getting in trouble!
Then one day it happened. He was 10 and out of the blue he said “Mama”. I almost fainted. I went over to see if he would say it again. Nope. I thought playing peek a boo might get him to say it again. Nope. I grabbed my picture and said “Mama”, pointing to the picture and me. Nope. I didn’t care. He had said it and that was all there was to it! If I kept at it, he would say it again! So every day I would show him my picture, say mama, point to myself, say mama, over and over. I wanted so badly for him to put the two together but he never did. Instead it turned into part of his babbling. At least it was something other then Baba!
As the years went on K added more and more “words”. Wawa, yaya, baba, mama. At 12 he said “Dada” and that got hubby so excited but he knew the same thing I did. He didn’t mean it. As he became a teenager he would put two sounds together, like “mawa, yaba”. Now he loves to say “ya” over and over. When he does that I feel like singing Louie Louie so he can do the “Ya ya ya ya ya ya” part, but he doesn’t like my singing, he gets upset when I do, lol.
I have finally come to the realization that K will never talk. It breaks my heart that I will never really know what goes on in his head, that he can’t tell me what he needs or wants. That he can’t say “I love you Mom”. The closest I get now is “Mama ma baba”.
Yes K. I love you too 🙂



2 thoughts on “Communication

  1. I think one day we will get to have conversations with our children, until then we keep looking for better ways to become better parents and understand all that we possibly can about our children. Thanks for sharing, please know you are not alone and that there are others that share what you live with everyday if only in some small way.

  2. P,
    This post had me close to tears, i know how hard and frustrating it is, as you know my son is also non-verbal. You long to hear their ‘voice’ …… I think you cope with things so well though, you are an amazing mom. K does love you, i can see that from the photos you’ve posted and your stories of him. As we’ve spoke about it before on twitter, even though our children dont have speech they still have unique, incredible personalities & can make us laugh and smile everyday. Keep posting your blogs, i love reading them.
    x x x x

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