Speech. It’s our Achilles heel.
Frankie says a lot of “jargon” – meaning she babbles conversationally with excellent intonation but the “words” are essentially gibberish. It is a normal stage of speech development and is considered a precursor to language in all children.
Except it feels like we’ve been stuck in this stage for a looooooong time. Which apparently is not uncommon in children with DS and a lot of other families are feeling the same frustrations we are. Anecdotally it seems many kids with DS start talking in earnest around age 5. And according to the National Down Syndrome Society most children with DS learn to speak and will use speech as their primary means of communication.
I had a long chat with Frankie’s speech therapist yesterday. She feels we are on the right track and we do hear more words emerging from the jargon. She cites Frankie’s stubborn streak as a reason we’re not hearing much yet…she says she’s a smartie and knows a lot more than she lets on. We both feel like she has GOT to be a talker one day, because she seems to have so much to say. But as with pretty much all things DS the process will require lots of hard work and LOTS of patience.
I don’t usually ask for prayers but I’m going to need you all to pray for me when it does happen because between her and her brother my head might just explode!! 😉