Just want to share how PROUD we are of Emma Lyn. She’s FINALLY talking at school. 👊🏻 She now talks to her OCS Teacher and the Asst. Teacher and the kids in her OCS class. She used to whisper and write notes as her ways to communicate, from Elementary to Middle School. She did say years ago she would talk in High School so she’s keeping up with her planned schedule ☺️. Oftentimes with children under the Spectrum, they have their own timeline.
From the time Emma started school she’s had what is technically called, Selective Mutism. What it is;
If you know an individual who can talk freely at home but freezes up in public settings or who seems excessively shy, you may know someone with selective mutism. Selective mutism is an anxiety disorder characterized by a person’s inability to speak in certain social settings such as at school, work, or in the community. People with SM are typically able to speak comfortably and communicate well in other settings, such as at home with family. (SOURCE: SelectiveMutism.org)
Bear in mind, it also took a bit longer for Emma to communicate normally with other members of our family and friends, in any social setting or occasion. Eventually she did but it was the school setting that she goes totally non-verbal. We’ve had progress and her OCS Teacher wanted me know how proud she is of her. She’s still not talking to everyone at school but she’s been doing so with the people in her small “bubble” and that’s a huge deal for her and everyone around her. In sharing this story I hope to send the message that patience is the key. I know it sounds cliché but ask any other parent of an Autistic child and they’d say the same thing. Our children dances to their own beat and when the light switch comes on, it’s magical. ✨✨
FYI, Emma has been in honor roll a few times and it always amazes us knowing she’s non-verbal at school. Don’t get us wrong, we are fully aware how intelligent she is but knowing she goes non-verbal at school that poses some kind of difficulty but she’s pulled it off and we’ve always been so proud of her at all times.
She’s had Speech Therapy from Elementary and Middle School and now in High School. She does it every Thursday and usually she’d point at the words. We’ve always encouraged her to try and verbalize the way she does at home. This week she said she spoke and it wasn’t hard at all. 🤷♀️😅 I swear, she cracks me up. She’s doing well in all her classes too. She enjoys PREP1 where she and her class help out in the cafeteria. It is a program where kids with special needs are taught basic life skills and jobs once they graduate. Right now it’s the cafeteria but the kids will move further as time progresses to other business places in town to learn and train.
Thankful for prayers 🙏🏻, her friendship with special people ❤️, familiar faces from Church, encouragement from family 😘, and of course patient Teachers, councilors, and Principals. When you see her, you might(or not ☺️) want to ask her about Food Allergies. She’d be happy to regal you with her well-researched knowledge on that topic. PS: She has NO food allergies but she knows a lot about it.😅👍🏻