I wish I knew others who had brought home older kids who had Down syndrome.
Axel tries VERY hard to talk. I mean, he focuses on my mouth and tries SO HARD to immitate the single vowel sound I'm making, and you can see the tiny little muscles around his lips quivering, and out comes not even a close approximation.
And then other days he immitates both consonant and vowel sounds in isolation pretty well.
But putting it all together for speech is just not happening. Today we started his school assessments and they're all like, "But he's only been hearing English for 7 1/2 weeks. Give him time!" But they haven't seen kids with DS who are adopted before. They don't know what happens when the child stops hearing their native language, and how QUICKLY they learn the new one. (it is amazingly quick!)
So yeah, he's only been home a short time, that theory is true to a point, but I've also seen other kids repeating more words. They can at least repeat them, even if they don't know the meaning. Axel is not able to even repeat them. Even first words, like "shoe", or "more", or "eat". He is not able to say ANY of those words. Well....really by two months out from adoption his native language should be GONE from most of his memory. There is usually a period of time where there is almost no language, then by 3 months or so their new spoken language STARTS to take off. (though it can still be years before they are fluent.)
He also wasn't speaking Serbian either. I'm told he only had a handful of words, and those were only rarely understandable to people outside the family.
Today his hearing was tested again, and again he tested in normal limits.
I'm so confused. I don't get it. What does apraxia look like? Years ago I worked with a student (46 chromosomes) who had severe apraxia and has ZERO speech at 6 years old. She was like Axel, picking up signs very fast. I worked with her during summer school to help increase her sign vocabulary.
Axel seems to learn signs just as fast. Show him one today, and he'll remember it forever. (he may not produce it, but he remembers what it means and understands it receptively) But teach him how to say, "mama" today, and it's gone two hours later.
What does auditory neuropathy look like?
Axel DOES have six words he can say. "Thankyou" (gang kooooooo) "bye", "hi" (Haaaaa ee), "pee", "no"(prounounced "ngo") "down" (pronounced "gown")
I'm having a really hard time with this and I don't know why. If he had a hearing loss, it wouldn't bother me because there is a reason. But without a hearing loss....well....now what?
The other problem is the school district. If he had a hearing loss, it's MUCH easier for me to push for the placement I want for him that will help him increase his sign vocabulary and language skills. But without a documented hearing loss, he'll be limited to a classroom aid who knows some signs. Yeah...Axel will be bypassing that person VERY fast, making that type of service very limiting for him.
I did get the name of a SLP who specializes in processing disorders. I'm going to call him tomorrow and see if he can do an assessment.
I just don't know what to do with this. I really, really don't. My gut says there is more going on but we can't find it. It is hard to get services for something you can't find, especially when they're saying, "give it more time."