She said the most important thing to work on right now is re-directing her air flow. She has learned to use her nose to blow air for everything (which is why the “m” sound in “mama” is so easy for her). She blows bubbles with her nose (hehe), cools her food off with her nose … anything you would blow air for with your mouth, she does with her nose. It’s totally adorable and a common cleft issue, but now that Sunshine’s palate is repaired, we need to correct it!
Sunshine is really enjoying this therapy “game” … although I need to keep reminding her to not bite the straw, she is getting better at blowing air through the straw on her own without my help. And she’s actually making bubbles in the water, which just tickles her to pieces! It’s only been 2 days so far, so I am excited to see how much progress she’s made in the next few weeks. There is still air escaping out of her nose when I’m not holding it closed, but she’s already picked up on this game so much, I’m convinced that it won’t be long before she’s doing it perfectly.
Although Sunshine has a large ASL vocabulary, her verbal vocabulary is almost non-existent. She can make her points known in many situations, but certainly not all. And of course this easily leads to frustration for her (and us!), especially because she can understand everything we say to her and knows what she wants to communicate back. I can’t imagine what it must feel like to know what you want to say but not be able to do it. It will be such a wonderful progression to hear her using verbal language in the future!