I am not sure I ever imagined I would have a child who couldn't talk to me. Not that she will always be non-verbal, but for now as we are a little over a week away from her third birthday, Avery has yet to develop verbal language. So much of how we connect to others is wrapped up in words. Being able to talk, is something everyone seems to be able to do, right? Wrong. I don't want to keep repeating myself here, or repackage the same message again and again, but when it comes down to it, this is how I find myself coping. How I manage to convince myself that in the big picture, my life is pretty grand.
Think about it this way. Sometimes our memories, such as those of a beloved grandmother who passed or an old friend we can't find.... are actually not "verbal" memories at all. They are images, feelings, senses etc. With Avery, since we can't connect through language, we have to dig deeper. Find a connection through a song, a touch, a picture, or an experience. I feel extraordinarily lucky that she has enabled me to look beyond words, and find meaning in the moments.
In each "evaluation" or "assessment" of how Avery functions, we hear alot about what she needs to learn. What about what WE need to learn? She is an amazing teacher, if you just look beyond what is "standard" or "normal." I know that as her mother it is my job to guide her, to show her the world and teach her how to live in it, but how amazing for me that I get just as much knowledge from her. She is here for a purpose. For those who know and love her, she is showing us how to think out of the box. To sit and be quiet as we watch her light up to one of her favorite songs, to walk side by side with her and experience her joy as she sees a bird fly by, or to realize how a simple hug can merge two souls together... even when there are NO words.