…and Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
That is Jake thus far. Wordless. Non-verbal. Non-speaking.
Here are the things I know that contribute to this:
1. Jake has Down syndrome. Little ones with Down syndrome take longer to learn how to talk. Partially because they have some cognitive delays, and partially because they have low muscle tone, which affects the muscles of the mouth and tongue, which are very important for speech.
2. Jake has some conductive hearing loss, due to fluid build-up in his ears. It is hard to learn how to speak properly if you are unable to hear properly (for more on our journey in this area, look here or here)
3. Jake is rockin’ some other skills. His social skills are amazing (as anyone who’s met him will know!) He walked really early. His gross motor skills are awesome. But because he is so mobile, all his energy has gone into those skills. He has not had a lot of mental energy left over for learning how to speak.
It’s not that Jake doesn’t know how to communicate. Oh my word does he ever! He is pretty good with signing. His non-verbal communication, while sometimes frustrating to decipher, is constantly improving. He is 100% personality, he knows exactly how to make known his wants and desires, and he is learning more every day.
We are waiting (often not-so-patiently) for a word. For the day Jake says “Mommy”. Oh how I long for that day!