Elijah has been doing really great in speech therapy lately and we're seeing changes in the way he is using his mouth. His tongue is moving around a lot more, he's starting to stick his tongue out a bit, he's closing his mouth some, he's attempting to chew, and he seems to have a better general awareness of his mouth.
Eating fascinates me. It seems like such a simple thing to do and might I add…I'm really good at it (but that's a whole other topic!). Eating really isn't as simple as it seems, however. Have you ever stopped to think all the things that you do in your mouth just to take a bite of food? It's phenomenal. And along those same lines, have you ever thought of all the things that your mouth has to do in order for you to speak? It's not a simple task; it's exceptional what we do with our mouths. Read this aloud (if you like – and if it won't make you seem like a crazy personJ) and think of all the positions your tongue, your lips, etc. are in just so that you can talk. It's really amazing.
Today in therapy, Elijah ate mandarin oranges for the first time in his life. His therapist was working on getting him to bite off food and eat it. I was pleasantly surprised on how well he handled the chunks he bit off. His little mouth was working! I could see his adorable little dimples as he worked the oranges around in his mouth and down his cute little esophagus. I was mighty proud over some silly little pieces of fruit.
As Elijah and I left therapy today, his therapist mentioned that Elijah is making a lot of progress. She said she's noticing him making a lot more noise (Andy and I have been noticing that too). She also mentioned that as his eating skills improved, she thought his speech would start to emerge. I almost got tears in my eyes just hearing her say that. This means that she thinks he'll have speech – that it's going to come in due time. Oh, how I love to hear him running around the house saying, "Mom! Mom! Moooom!" I know I'm getting ahead of myself, looking too far into the future when I should be focused on the present. So, for now, I'm going to revel in the glory of oranges.