by Jayme, Contributing Writer
“Mama, mama! Pay be mean! Pay be mean!”
Usually this type of tattle telling would annoy a mom and get a sigh before going to settle whatever silly fight the kids were having. To me, it was a milestone, a beautiful declaration of emotion.
Our son Tyson lived almost three years of his life saying nothing. There were a few sounds, but mostly cries of emotion, angry outbursts and an earnest desire to be heard. We worked hard to understand him and let him know we were trying, but without any words we could only guess or assume what he was “saying.”
Yesterday I heard him. I truly heard him.
When he cried out that his sister was being mean in the car, I just about pulled over and cried. Those were words, maybe without ending sounds, but it was clear as day. Sister was being mean to him and he was upset.
Nowadays our house isn’t just the endless chatter of our girls. Now there is a new voice, Tyson’s voice.
“I wan cookie.”
“I wan do it.”
“I wan pay.”
“Mama, pee pee.”
When we first found out Tyson had apraxia, we were devastated. How could this perfect little boy have something “wrong” with him?
After almost 2 years of assessments, speech therapies, occupational therapies, grinding day in and day out, we can see a future. We can see what sacrifice and hard work can do for our son. We can see a little boy that is stronger than anyone we’ve ever met.
Along with his tenacity and determination, Tyson has always been the sweetest and most loving little boy, even when he couldn’t speak. He is such a big brother and knows when something is wrong or when someone is sad or hurt. He is always the first one to give a hug or kiss and genuinely cares about his family. So much feeling and emotion was written on his face and its refreshing and pure joy to see him able to verbalize that now.
To have this new way of seeing him, hearing him, knowing him, is something I will never be able to explain. It’s like I’m meeting him for the first time and I get to fall in love all over again.
Tyson still has a long way to go before the world will hear him as clearly as we do, but I know that day will come. He will have a voice louder than most.
Tyson has worked so hard attending Foundations Developmental House, usually 4-5 times a week. Day after day after day he walks in to FDH and gets to work. This fall he will be attending priority pre-school and I have no doubt he will continue to grow and excel as a student and as a person.
Tyson taught us different is beautiful. Different is interesting. Different is strong. Different is smart. Different is funny. Different is loving. Different is perfect.
I thank God for sending us Tyson, to remind me everyday what it means to be strong.