Will Wishing Make it So?

I really don’t want Rory to have a language issue.

I go back and forth on whether I think the things I posted about yesterday–her srtuggles with nouns, her mixing up words within categories–mean anything more than, as Gina said yesterday, that she’s “just a girl trying to learn SO Much. Yes, she wasn’t only learning language but learning social cues, learning how to be in a family, learning so much more than kids brought up here at an earlier age.”

Sometimes I think so. This morning, she lost the word “Nutella,” and I thought: Crap. She’s had Nutella for breakfast every day this week, and suddenly she’s pointing to the bread–challah–and saying “I wan’ toast with challah.” I pushed, gently. This is the challah, I reminded her, knowing she knows that. Challah is one of her very favorite things. She paused. She looked blank and a little worried. She knew she’d forgotten the word. I just waited. Honestly, I didn’t know what, if anything, I should do–and then she caught sight of the jar. “Nutella!” she yelled.

I have no idea what, if anything, that little vignette indicates.

I don’t know what it means that she lets so much language rush over her–if she’s not tuned in, she’s seriously hearing NOTHING that’s said around her. But she’s come so far in the past few months. She’s trying to make jokes and solve riddles. She talks to strangers–and they understand, even before I’ve repeated her words (as I so often do). She is expressing emotions and thoughts and ideas that she would never have even bothered with not too long ago, because the words were just too hard.

She’s sounding out words to spell, although not yet to read–which is exactly how two of my other kids began reading. She can write “DOG” without help, but not yet read it. She knows all of her letter sounds.

But then, there are these gaps. I don’t want to make too much of them. I don’t want to make too little of them. I guess we’ll wait until speech therapy etc. resumes in the next week or two and see what they think there.

I haven’t really explored what kinds of therapy the state will give her once she’s out of her preschool/kindergarten. One issue is that our kids go to the “independent” school instead of the “public” school (and “the” is right in both cases–there’s only one of each) because of some issues with one of the other kids, long ago. I don’t know how that affects things. I also don’t know how it will play out. Rory seems right on target reading-wise for K. She has basic preschool math skills–weak, but not nothing. And she just seems so bright and “on.” But our independent school isn’t exactly known for its ability to handle kids with any needs beyond moving up a year in math. That doesn’t mean they can’t. It means I’m not sure, and I’m loathe to bring it up and maybe create a problem for Rory where there isn’t one, if you know what I mean. What if I say, I’m worried–and they mark her as a kid to worry about?

It’s always our philosophy to assume that things will work out for the best in the end, and that interference is not something to rush into. (Rob says “it’s not a problem until you make it problem.”) Of course, we’ve already taken action. She’s getting good services. I think they’ve “labeled” her disorder only so that they can be sure to get her the service she needs–they don’t limit their therapies to one thing or another, I know.  I’m confident she’s in good hands this year, but you all have made me even more aware that I need to get up to speed on where it goes from here.

4 Responses to “Will Wishing Make it So?”

  1. Ab says:

    Your description of Rory sounds remarkably like my 4 3/4 year old. She gets OT for sensory something something –we do not have a diagnosis. After her initial evaluation she was sent for speech therapy because of expressive language delays as well as the OT. But the speech therapist stopped the therapy after a month because the therapist felt really strongly that the sensory issues were causing attentional issues that looked like language issues, and when the sensory issues were addressed the speech issues would resolve. And they largely have. Basically, sometimes all the undifferentiated sensory input she is dealing with jams her circuits. On the other hand, sometimes I worry that she really does have an expressive language delay that I am just trying to wish out of existence. Its really hard to know, and I imagine that with Rory’s language learning history it is even more complex. I hope this is a useful extra data point.

    The other thing is, we have our daughter in a private school, and our state (NY) provides services to the kids in private schools through private services providers who are contracted with the state. I have no idea if your state is the same. When she was moving from the preschool program into the school aged program they held a transfer meeting and talked to the teachers, services providers, etc to see what services were needed. The big difference for us with her no longer in preschool is that the services become more tied to academic achievement which means that if you feel she has a deficit but they see her as performing on grade level it can be harder to get services. The most useful piece of advice I got from my pediatrician was to see a developmental pediatrician so there was someone who was interested in evaluating the whole child, who could see her over time, and advocate for us with the Board of Ed if we felt her needs were not being met. Sorry for going on at such length.

  2. Flamingo says:

    i don’t know..that sounds like my bio daughter with having to think about the simplest thing. honestly? if you are hestitant to mention anything than don’t. if it is a memory issue it will come to the forefront VERY quickly when learning picks up. there is no way she will be able to keep up in that case. i don’t mean that negative, but it will be become obvious.

  3. Flamingo says:

    thought of something else. sierra had extensive testing with LIU and our school district before she even started K. she was eligible for a class that wasn’t mainstreamed. huge blessing for us.

  4. Lisen says:

    Larkin still completely blanks on common words. She’s a voracious reader above grade level, she’s been home almost 7 years, and she never spoke any Chinese before she came home. Yet, she’ll forget a very obvious word for something not long after she was just talking about it. I don’t know why or what goe son in that pretty little head of hers, but we know she is smart. She is also, however, very spacey.