Non-verbal does not scare me. Non-verbal is something that I teach every year to my students. I do a novel unit on the book Rules by Cynthia Lord. It is a wonderful book that I have been using for several years. During this unit we spend a lot of time discussing sign language and communication books. We have our school's SLP, who is my dear friend, come into my room and show my students different communication books used by others students that attend our school. The unit is designed to bring awareness that non-verbal does NOT in any way mean the inability or lack of desire to communicate.
When we read about WHS it said uncommunicative. That freaked me out. What if Magnolia was sick and could not tell us? What if she was hurt? What if she hated being held? Or hated her swing? What if everything we were doing was the opposite of what she wanted us to do but she was unable to communicate her wants and needs to us? That frightened me to the core. I watched videos and read a lot of blogs about other kids with WHS before Magnolia was born and that gave me hope that the research was untrue. The videos and stories were of children that were non-verbal but far from uncommunicative.
Magnolia does communicate to us all of her wants and needs. She has a ridiculously high pain tolerance, as do other kids with WHS, but she is still able to communicate with us. She recently whined, fussed and cried for two solid nights. We took her to the doctor and found out Magnolia has a nasty ear infection. Thanks for telling us you are hurting Magnolia. Tonight we had some running around to do and we did not think we would be gone long. We took several bottles with us but no baby food. Our running around took longer than expected and we decided to grab a quick slice of pizza before we headed home. Magnolia was sitting in her car seat sucking her pacifier contently until we sat down at the restaurant. The minute we sat down she spit her pacifier out and opened her mouth. I tried to give her her bottle, she spit it out. I tried to put the pacifier back in her mouth, she spit it out. She just kept whining and opening her mouth. She was mad we were eating and she was not. She has never communicated that she has wanted food before. When we sit her in her high chair and get her food ready and get her spoon to try and feed her it takes a couple of seconds before she gets what we are doing and starts opening her mouth. She does not usually communicate she is hungry or she wants food. We just offer it to her often and when she is ready she takes it. Apparently tonight was different. I am not going to lie, at first I did not believe what she was doing was showing us she wanted food, but Brian and Toller both convinced me that is what it was. We fed her the second we got home and she was content again.
Magnolia communicates to us. She has likes and dislikes. She has things that make her laugh and things that make her cry. She has a personality and a way to communicate it with us.
|She is getting so long.|
|Getting ready to eat|
Magnolia has been perfecting her purposeful movements. In this video she shows Toller that she can purposefully, and extremely quickly, remove the diaper rag from her face. He tells her good job by kissing his hand and smacking it to her forehead. Boys are always great with expressing their feelings.