Facebook decided to tell me of a memory the other day. A memory that gave my heartstrings quite a tug and it keeps replaying in my mind. It was a post I made after visiting The Boy at school and witnessing something wonderful.
It was time for The Boy to do his work and in front of him sat a paper with his name written on it. The teacher read the name to him and my Boy motioned to himself. He recognized that name as being his name. As being him. There wasn’t a dry eye to be had. We were beyond happy that he showed us what he already knew.
That was 4 years ago. He was 7 at the time.
Today we still struggle with having him spell his name. He won’t type it out on his own, but he obviously knows that it is ‘his’. I had forgotten that he did demonstrate it clearly to us all those years ago. There is so much knowledge locked away in that mind of his. I go through every day, every interaction with him under the assumption that he has complete understanding of everything going on around him. I do not assume that he doesn’t comprehend the words spoken in another room. I do not talk about him as if he wasn’t there.
He is a person.
He is just unable to express himself in a way that we can understand.
And he does not see the point in demonstrating his knowledge to those around him simply because we want him to. He will not point to something because you asked him to. He will only demonstrate his knowledge in functional applications. I find that remarkable. I mean, why on earth should he spend his time and energy in tasks that have no practical applications in his life.
A prime example? My amazing Boy was learning to use scissors at school. I was told that he had reached the limit of his ability and the professional didn’t feel he would be able to progress further. So I put scissors in his hands when he wanted frozen fruit and told him he had to cut the bag open himself.
Hmmmmmm, guess who is using scissors….
Don’t underestimate your child.
You may just be looking at things from a different angle.
It’s time to think outside the box.