a blog about raising a daughter with cerebral palsy and learning unexpected lessons along the way

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

O is for Oia

I struggle more often than I care to admit with the fact that my 3 year old has a significant expressive language delay, a delay equivalent of someone a third her age. Some days it never gets me down (okay, I'm lying) but too often it's on my mind and the older she gets the heavier it feels. Being around a toddler Oia's age who talks in sentences, tells complete stories, and spouts off random silly thoughts and questions leaves my heart a little achy. Aren't all parents supposed to be able to die laughing because of the darndest thing their child just said? I still remain hopeful for that day.

Despite the language delay, I never let myself underestimate Oia's receptive language and the potential she harbors. It could be an easy thing to do but I don't dare go there. Oia won't let me. Yesterday is an example of that.

After PT, we ran an errand to a local print shop to print a few photos. Oia was in her stroller as we waited at the counter for our order to print. The view from a stroller in front of a tall counter, as one can image, is less than appealing. Oia was ready to go as her patience were nearing the end. As I'm standing at the counter trying to be patient myself, I hear Oia below me saying her name repeatedly and with conviction, each name getting louder than the last. She grabs my attention with "Oia, Oia, Oiiaaaaa..." and as I look down I realize that all the while she is not only saying her name but frantically pointing to a letter O that she spotted within the sign that hung level to her sweet little face on the side of the checkout counter.

"Yes, Oia, that is an O for Oia! You do have an O in your name!"

And so those are the rare, beautiful moments I live for... a mere 3 seconds where Oia shows me a bit more of who she is and what she knows. I just love this girl, with or without the ability to speak many words, I simply love her.


  1. She is amazing, that girl! I hope you all have a very Merry Christmas, Mo!

  2. Love that girl! Next stop: Screaming in the grocery store. :)

  3. Such a smart little girl! I love that moment :-)

  4. Just one of those moments that lifts you up and fills your heart with love, making it possible for you to get through those not so wonderful moments.

    I, too, wonder what cute things Gracie would say, or what she would tell me if she could. I'm hoping her communication device helps with that. Does Oia have a communication device?

  5. Love it!! You knew she was smart as per her preschool teacher right? I love her persistance too in getting your attention!

  6. such a nice story I have CP too and even though my speech is not the clearist I took ap us history