Words aren’t our easiest thing. By “our” I mean Avery, but I also mean the whole family. I wrote about it a little bit in my book–the “taxi driver” syndrome, where we all step in to help, but really, we’re just making it harder for Avery to do the things he needs to do for himself. We’re a bunch of enablers.
Which is why Avery has begun using, with the help of his excellent speech therapist, an AAC. He’s using the LAMP Words For Life app on an iPad. He’s getting quite good at it, which brings me to the tears part.
As I was trying to explain to our wonderful speech therapist why the AAC would never really work, about how it was going to cause all these problems, I started to cry. And then I was so embarrassed I lost my train of thought and just sat in the little chair in the media center of the school, which is where we go for speech therapy, trying not to cry more.
We eventually got it all figured out–by “we” here I mean the therapist, Avery and me. It became clear that the person with the problem with the AAC was me, and that it was a problem because it represented a time, some time in the future, when Avery wouldn’t have me around to help him navigate the world, wouldn’t need me around to help him.
And that thought overwhelmed me. I mean, wasn’t that my biggest fear, back when Avery was a baby? That he wouldn’t have a big, beautiful life? And now, I’m surprised at how much a part of me doesn’t want to ever let him go.
On our way home, I asked Avery if he understood everything that had happened. He said he did. He understood it all even better than I did. He said, “Mommy’s going to miss Avery.”