In the 13 years of my daughter’s life, she has never spoken a word. Not one single word
Words [wûrdz] A sound or a combination of sounds, or its representation in writing or printing that symbolizes and communicates a meaning
People often ask me how we communicate with Piper. It is difficult to explain. She has no words, but will make high pitched squeals or short vowel sounds. Sometimes, it can sound like she is saying, “yeah” or “uh-uh”. Her facial expressions and tone of sound or cry can communicate her needs.
When Piper was younger, we tried to teach her sign language. She did not consistently understand the differences in each sign, so when asking for what she wanted, it was like watching the coach in a baseball game with arms waving, tummy patting, ear pulling, clapping, and chaos. She became very frustrated with us! Why could we not understand what she wanted?
Next we tried to give her “words” with picture cards and had her point to what she wanted. Piper became proficient at pointing to what she wanted and very good at pushing away the picture or item that she did not. Then the iPad came into our life. We loaded it with a communication program that we are slowly working to utilize on a daily basis. Piper will use it to request a certain food, tell me she “needs a break”, or let us know that she wants to go to school. The struggle is in her lack of motivation. She will use it to communicate if prompted, but not in a reliable manner. I often wonder if she finds it easier for us to anticipate her every need rather than struggle to translate thoughts into the push of a button.
It is quite an eye opener when you ask people to communicate without words. They struggle to make themselves heard when there is silence. Yet, their body language and facial expressions are so telling. We take for granted that we have a voice. We take for granted that we have words. We have the ability to choose positive or negative words, kind or hurtful words, uplifting or cutting words.
“A word of encouragement heals the one who receives it, but a deceitful word breaks the spirit.” Proverbs 15:4 The Voice
Perhaps God’s plan in blessing me with Piper is that I learn the truth about words. My girl has no words, but seems totally content in life and feels love. Why do I put my self-worth in approving words from others? Why do I seek words of affirmation to prove that I am worthy? My Holy Yoga journey is one of finding the quiet. I am working to find peace in myself and knowledge deep down in my soul that He loves me. God knows I am worthy. I will not have the right words or ability to speak life into others until I fully rely on my Lord. It’s time to shut my mouth and listen.
Lord, I am seeking to hear your words and plan for my life. My flesh focuses on my desire to hear Piper say a word or tell me that she loves me. Her life is a pure example of how I should live my life. I want to have happiness and joy because I have your Truth within as my foundation. Help me to grow. Amen.