Communicating with Pebbles is difficult as she can’t talk and finds it hard to express herself using any other methods except some hand gestures.
For example if I asked her “Do you want a drink?”, she won’t respond. If she wants a drink she will reach for her empty cup and wave it about whilst crying until some one takes it to be refilled. I tried making flash cards with a picture of her sippy cup for example, to see if she would point to what she wants. She took one look at the cards, snatched them off of me and tried to eat them. Which was quite funny but not productive.
It is frustrating to try and gage what she wants some times which can prove difficult if she is feeling under the weather. Obviously if she has a sore stomach you can see physical signs like puke or a runny nappy and if she has a cold you can hear her voice crackle as she babbles or you can see and hear her cough. Sometimes after changing her nappy, giving her something to eat, giving her a cuddle, giving her something to drink and getting down on my hands and knees to play with her she is still trying to ask me for something and I feel guilty because I don’t have a clue what she wants. But that’s okay. Sometimes as parents we have to throw our hands up in the air and say “I don’t know”.
Pebbles wasn’t always non verbal, when she was younger she could say “Mum”, “Nana” and “Dada” but stopped suddenly just after her first birthday. She can still say “Mum” or “Moma” or “Mmmmmmm” but that can mean anything from “Drink” to “Change the channel” she has even thrown out the odd word like “ice cream” or “May” every now and again but still hasn’t got a even simple steady vocabulary.
Pebbles is going to meet her speech therapist next month. This should be interesting, I have tried flash cards, we sing nursery rhymes and read books on a daily basis. I do little things like make sure I get eye contact from Pebbles before I say good morning and try to get down to her eye level before talking to her. Hopefully the speech therapist will have some more tricks up her sleeve.
It would be nice to have a two way conversation with Pebbles whilst we are out in public because at the moment I talk at Pebbles and sometimes she falls asleep, I should imagine to other people I look like a raving lunatic talking to myself.
Hopefully in a months time she will be chatting away and singing duets with me much to the neighbours dismay.
I will give more updates after meeting Pebbles Speech Therapist.