McKenna Joy is a "joy"!
Mickey (She likes to be called "Mickey" over "Kenna" now.) is doing great. She still struggles with her speech, but she says pretty much everything she wants to and she is understood most of the time. She will be 4 years old in less than a month! She is loving ballet classes. Things do not come easily for her, but just like with her speech, she works very very hard and achieves success.
Besides continuing speech concerns, which I will get into next- she has a VERY persistent "w" sit.
This is apparently a sign of possible low tone.. She struggles a bit more than is usual in ballet, she trips and has trouble with stairs and randomly falls off of her chair. So I plan to ask her pediatrician for a letter of referral to PT/OT at children's mercy for an eval and possible therapy for all of that.
At this time she is not in any speech therapy. I am waiting for a call back from the school district to schedule an evaluation just to monitor her development, but I'm almost 100% sure she will not qualify for speech therapy. Because of funding cuts children have to be significantly globally delayed to qualify for their special programs. I do have an appointment for her to be reevaluated by Children's Mercy in July. I'm not sure what to expect as far as the outcome. I think she's doing very very well, but I'm also a little lost now on what a "normal" 4 year old should sound like.
I am due to have a baby girl in October and although McKenna knows and totally understands the baby is a girl and that "she" refers to a girl- she still mostly refers to her as "he". McKenna can say "she" but it's harder so in the middle of a sentence it comes out "he".
Some of her approximate pronunciations are hilarious. For instance "Astronaut" is "estersnot". "Roller Coaster" is "whirl coaster". "Ukulele" is "ookawayee". "Guitar" is "katar". There are many more. There are also many particular letters and letter combos she doesn't say. They vary from the beginning, middle and end of words. "sh", "r", "l", "t", "th","j", "m", "n", "s" there are more and maybe there is a very definable pattern, but I just haven't noticed.
Talking about yogurt with Cole she asks, "why don't you want uh chunks to be in". "Des be brave about chunks." "yook Cole I eat chunks". Her sentence structure and cadence can be a bit awkward, but it serves the purpose of communication without excessive work on her part. I still think she comes across as younger than she is because of how she sounds. In other words she communicates more mature and advanced ideas and concepts that may take a stranger by surprise because what she is actually communicating doesn't match how she sounds.
She still has times where she has dysfluency as well. The way I see it is she gets stuck on a word while she is working on getting the rest of the sentence out. Definitely a "dysfluent groping".
She also communicates her fatigue with speech sometimes. She'll say, "I'm tired of talking".
Overall though she continues to add words and develop very well with the level she is communicating at. This week she has added, "actually" it sounds like "actuwee", but she is using it correctly.
Mickey is an amazing little girl. Her work ethic continues to astound me. When she decides she wants to conquer something, she does! Whether something physical or speech related she works it ON HER OWN until she's happy with the results.
She is aware she has a speech problem. In fact she helped me write this blog today. She gave me words she has trouble saying. She has a great attitude about it. And most of the time can laugh at herself about her funny pronunciation.
I love love love my beautiful girl!