Thursday, January 17, 2013

Remembering - Los Angeles Special Needs Parenting

Last night I fell happily down memory lane, fuelled by a desire to share Reuben's story and offer hope to a new family whom I'm excited to share are geographically the closest CHARGE family we've yet known. I also felt the need to answer my own questions: How exactly did he come so far so quickly?. I still haven't found those answers, still can't piece together the steps, nay, mountainous leaps he took in his command of expressive language born from a mouth that was unable to utter a single sound due to a tracheostomy, never mind a word, until aged 2. How he seemed to understand phonetics intuitively. 

Immediately I started sharing stories, milestones and surprising miracles about Reuben's journey. Turning quickly to his Youtube channel, I myself once again felt renewed feelings, not just of pride, but really of gobsmacked disbelief at his reading abilities aged 4 years and 9 months. It takes me back again from whence he came, those utterly fragile beginnings, the 3 years when he was unable to speak, but had such a beautiful command of American Sign Language, really his saviour to expressive communication. I love that journey we embarked on together, learning to sign and utterly recommend programmes such as Signing Time as an aid to learning, to breaking down the barriers to learning a new language. I hope you enjoy this somewhat fast track experience through his videos of how our little man decided through the strength of his own determination and love for life, to defy all that had been deemed supposedly by the fate of that little mutation on his CHD7 gene.

Behold the little marvel that is Reuben Jack.

Aged 4 years and 9 months

Aged 4:

Aged 3 - just transitioning to speech

Aged 2 - ASL signs only, no speech due to tracheostomy


Justin and Victoria Nelson said...

So, so beautiful. We love you Reu. You continue to inspire and amaze all of us.

Calyn said...

Wow!!!! This is so amazing an inspiring!!!! He is soooooo smart!!!

Carrie said...

So beautiful and inspiring--thank you so much for sharing, Catherine. Reuben is really a marvel and no doubt at least a little of his progress is a result of your tireless devotion and unconditional love.

Jenn-JGF said...

So magical precious moments of Reu' with Mama Catherine... His confidence and smartness really shows... Makes me so happy for you both and soon Callum will catch up too...learning with his big brother Reu'