Three years ago Ethan was silent. Totally non-verbal with no noises what-so-ever! Then something amazing happened and he started to babble.
Over time Ethan also gained some words, only a handful, but it was all positive steps forward in his communication.
This time last year Ethan was still babbling and talking in his own language. It was as if he knew everything he was saying we just needed to work out how to translate it.
It is only, over this past year, that I have been happy referring to Ethan as pre-verbal rather than non-verbal as I’m really hoping that all signs are slowly starting to point towards Ethan gaining speech.
Over the years I have been told by people in the autism community that five is the magic number. If your child is going to gain speech, five is when it will start. I’m not sure how true this is as I have heard many other stores that contradict this, but it gave me hope when all I could wish for was for Ethan to have speech.
Then this year we had the summer holidays and something amazing happened, Ethan discovered Echolalia. Everything we said Ethan started to repeat, mostly in his own way but you could hear he was trying to recreate words.
For those first weeks Peppa Pig is what he craved and he was soon repeating the theme tune word for word.
We also discovered that Ethan will now say cheese when you want to take a photo of him. This must have been something that he picked up from school, it is so sweet.
With Little E getting very interested in books we dug out Ethan’s first word books that he never got the chance to use. He definitely amazed me this summer by pointing put everything he knew in those books.
We also gained a question, Ethan started to show an interest in the world around him and I was able to turn his grunt into ‘What is it?’. I’m now asked this every second, at all times of the day. Yes it might drive me slightly insane but I have waited so long for speech.
Ethan still has a very long way to go with his speech and communication and Ethan does still babble. We are still a long way off of Ethan requesting his wants and needs. I’m still unable to have a conversation with him. He still can’t tell me what he has done at school that day. We still have to heavily rely on visuals but we are making progress.