Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Childhood Apraxia of Speech

When Bryleigh was 18 mos, I noticed she wasn’t saying any words and would make sounds instead of words.  For instance, Love You was hmm hmm.  Cadence was fafa and so on.   I mentioned it at her appt and the dr told me not to worry – some kids just develop later.  I’m aware of that..Cadence was in speech therapy from 18 mos to 2 1/2 yrs old.  This was different. 

Dennis’ nephews all have CAS.  The oldest is 17 and still has problems being understood.  I worry about the girls b/c I don’t want them to have to struggle like he does.

It was hard for us too.  At home she would get so mad that we didn’t understand what she was saying that she would start throwing tantrums or cry herself to sleep from frustration.  It broke our hearts into a million pieces.  Something so simple that she wanted us to know and she couldn’t even share it.

Her face tells us so many things, but her little voice doesn’t.  I was praying for the moment when she would tell me she loved me.  [Im]Patiently waiting for her to be able to play with other kids w/o the other kids asking what she was saying or looking at her like she was speaking another language.  I want so desperately for her to have a friends that understand her.

At Bry’s 2 yr appt, I again voiced my concern.  This time she agreed and wrote us up for a speech eval.  Our insurance is A-MAZ-ING, however, it doesn’t cover speech therapy.  It will cover speech evaluations. But, those sneaky bastards, only approved a speech therapist in Brighton, MI..more than an hour from our house.  Considering the price of speech evals, it was worth it to go up there for her eval.

The evaluation was 2 hrs long…after, I met w/the therapists and was told that she was apraxic.  Even though I was fully expecting them to tell me this, I was still saddened by the diagnosis.  To top it off, our insurance wouldn’t cover therapy and I didn’t want her to not be able to speak properly b/c we couldn’t afford to pay for therapy.

I contacted Help Me Grow, they did another eval and we were set up with family resource funds to help pay for Bry’s therapy.  We could do private therapy OR we could take her to one of the universities and use their therapy.  It’s MUCH less expensive b/c it’s being done by grad students.  Since we only get $1,000/year, it will last longer at the university.  This is the route we’ve chosen. 

Shortly after her diagnosis, I was told about a support group.  We participated in their 2nd annual walk and I started attending the meetings.  They had a grant offering IPads for the kiddos.  I applied for Bryleigh and guess what – she got it!!!

She’s only had it a week or so – but it’s amazing.  One app, in particular, is doing a lot for her.  It shows the mouth close up and how it moves.  She loves playing w/the ipad.  She plays games as well as using the speech apps. 

Listening to the improvement in her speech just amazes me!  This girl is a trooper!!

As we continue on our Apraxia journey, I’m thankful for my supportive family and friends, for the wonderful support group I belong to…but especially thankful for my little girl – Apraxia may have crippled her voice for now – but her personality speaks volumes!

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Thanks to NWO Apraxia Support for Bryleigh’s IPad grant application!

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Playing w/her IPad is exhausting Smile

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