Every Tuesday is speech language therapy day around here. If you've been following my families journey, you should know that Ethan has Autism and Speech Apraxia which has left him with a very limited clear and understandable vocabulary. Madison has Rett Syndrome which has left her 100% nonverbal. So it should go without saying that communication has been challenging around here.
Over the past few years, I think we have tried every single communication option. We have even gone so far to purchase thousands of dollars of high tech augmentative and alternative communication devices, apps and software to assist with this challenge. Ethan is using TouchChat, while Madison is learning to use an eye gaze program called Communicator 5.
Meanwhile, Lisa has a 9-year-old cousin once removed who has been battling with hearing loss her whole life. Just a few months ago, her battle took a sudden and shocking turn for the worse and she lost 100% of her hearing.
All of this has got me thinking and I'd like to lead the charge in learning alternative communication. It only makes sense seeing as I live with non-verbal and communication challenged kids. I can only assume that my circles for the rest of my life will include others who may have similar challenges.
The universal alternative form of communication is sign language. We tried this with Ethan, and he actually was quite receptive to this. But we have focused on TouchChat more and actual therapy to work through the speech apraxia. With Madison having virtually no functional use of her hands, sign language has never been an option for her. But, I'd still like to learn basic sign language. I believe there is value in it and it would be a fun, AND A BENEFICIAL skill to learn.
With that being said, the 10th goal of my #2021Twenty is to learn 100 words in sign language. I already know a few, so I've got a head start on this one.