Friday, February 21

Speech Therapy for the Boys

At the boys’ 2 year appointment we talked with our pediatrician about our concern that both boys, but especially James, were delayed in their speech {Elanor, too, but not as much}. Avelyn was speaking full sentences, that you could understand, at 20 months…so the bar was set pretty high. We really noticed that they had very few words and those they had did not at all sound like words.

The pediatrician gave us a referral to Early Intervention to have the boys, and Elanor, assessed for speech {and the gamut of other things they test for}: Both boys qualified for speech. Our big concern was Jamie, who speaks as though he can’t hear. He had his hearing test in January…and boy! was THAT a traumatic experience.

Physically everything is all right with his ears: They respond and look the way they should. Of course the big question is whether he’s actually hearing or not. We don’t think he’s deaf, but do think that there may be a few decibels, pitches, and tones that he’s not picking up, given the way he says certain things.

They put us in a sound proof room with speakers around it, and some creepy-ass {I am not exaggerating} wind-up toys in darkened boxes. The tech showed Jamie where everything was: There was a 12” duck that walked and quacked, a bunny that beat a drum {think Energizer}, and a demonic monkey-clown that clanged cymbals {startlingly similar to the security monkey in Toy Story 3}.

It started off ok, with Jamie responding to the tech’s voice, then the toys started going off. The duck and the rabbit startled him, but not badly…then the monkey went off. Oh My Word! He didn’t cry. He didn’t fuss. He covered his eyes and pushed his head against my chest and looked at the ceiling.

He wasn’t responding too much to the tones on the right side of the room {he did look at my cell phone when the ones on the left side went off}. Then that blasted monkey went off. That was it. It was over. Call in the psychologist.  He covered his eyes, looked at the ceiling, pushed back against me as hard as he could {he was in my lap} and BAWLED! I kid you not. He was near hysterical. Nothing every really upsets Jamie badly, he’s a pretty even-keeled kid.

At that point the tech stopped, which was good, because I was going to stop the whole thing myself. End result was they couldn’t really determine anything conclusive about his hearing. He does hear, but we don’t know how much. He goes back in May, to a different place, to have it checked again. I’m hoping there are no creepy critters.

That night, Matt brought home the big truck and backed into the driveway. The truck beeps when it backs up. James immediately covered his eyes and looked at the ceiling. I had to hold him, during dinner time, and tell him it was just Daddy’s truck. He still looks around nervously when he hears the beeping, but is getting better.


Today was the boys’ first therapy session, at 8am…meaning that I had to wake them up early to have them fed and dressed to be ready. The girls had spent the night at my in-laws, but they were home at 7:30. The session is 45 minutes for each boy, so 90 minutes, but fortunately they incorporate all the kids, so it’s not like I have to keep removing children from the room or anything. It was pretty much just a free play time today, to get to know the therapist.


I’m curious to see how the whole thing works in the future and how the boys respond to it. Henry has been doing better over the past couple of months anyways with his speech {stringing 2 words together, new words, etc}, so I think he’s making progress on his own too. We’ll have to see how things with Jamie go.

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