Can You Hear Me Now?

On top of my Apraxia of Speech diagnosis, and this is something I don't speak about as often as I should, I was 90% deaf in both ears at the age of 2-3 years old.

No wonder I had speech delays, right? 
Our ears filter out wax, allowing our eardrums to vibrate and interpret the beautiful sense of'sound. However, my ears were not filtering out wax-actually there was such a buildup of wax behind my eardrums that they were hardly vibrating at all. 
My parents discovered this after some stubborn exchanges of me turning up the TV volume, them turning it back down, and me turning it back up again. 
I had about five sets of tubes in both ears to drain the wax. And I don't necessarily recall the procedure but I do recall the pressure and the discomfort. It was scary! It feels like a balloon about to pop and all of a sudden you hear this gushy, liquid noise whistling out of your ear. 
For my age, and what little I knew of the human anatomy, I was wondering why these adults were tryi…

On Paper, In Person





90% Unintelligible.


These were the labels tied to my name, or at least written on my old IEP reports starting from Kindergarten.

I have the luxury now of re-reading these reports and smiling, but at the time they were written, there was nothing to smile about.

I smile now because everyone involved in these meetings-me included- had no idea what I'd amount to years later as an adult.

You read these terms, these labels, and we naturally assume the worst for the future ahead.

On paper I was destined to struggle.

In person, I was destined to be whatever my abilities allowed.

Paper can change. It's the person-and their hopes and hard work- that changes it.

These sheets of paper could easily have been a crutch. But why would I want that? If others can succeed without these sheets of paper, then why can't I?

Time and time again I'd take the harder route just for the satisfaction that I was doing something that the 'Nor…

What 26.2 Miles Taught Me

Eight months of training.
 10-40 Miles a Week of Running.
No Crazy Friday Nights.
Saturday mornings running at 5am for 32 Weeks.

And for some crazy reason, it was all worth it on that Sunday morning in Long Beach.

26.2 Miles, a full Marathon, beginning at 6am and ending whenever I finished.

This was my first full marathon.

It was about as emotionally draining, overwhelming, and rewarding as you can imagine. For someone like me, who never considered herself to be a runner, someone that started athletics in special-ed P.E for poor coordination; I never thought I'd find myself at a Marathon Starting Line yet alone the Finish Line.

Fun fact, only 0.5% of the U.S Population has ever done a Marathon. I'd be joining this elite group of athletes well knowing that I still trip once every 8 Miles.

I ran that Marathon for those that couldn't and for my 26th birthday. I ran for that little girl who was told she couldn't. I ran that distance for people that dream of doing so, but d…

Apraxia Has Given...

Apraxia has given me...Confidence. 

A twisted sense of humor. 


But, in turn, it's given me flaws.




Authority Problems.

I know what it's like to think you're doing something right, yet in practice it's wrong. 

We all focus on a child's mere ability to speak and function when they're older, we forget about the emotional implications. 

We forget about the emotional lessons these kids witness. 

1. You think you're speaking correctly, but you're not. No matter how hard you try, it feels like you're constantly      wrong. 

2. You go to therapy to do something everyone else has no issues with-speaking for goodness sake. 

3. People are different, some you can trust and rely on more than others. You're told to rely on and turn to other Adults-teachers for instance-but let's face it. Some teachers and supposed-to-help adults don't all empathize the same. Nor do they care the same. Some don't see your disorder a…


Confidence is a choice. Confidence is my choice.

The Apraxia Conference and conversations with fellow attendees all lead to a common topic: Confidence. 
How are you so confident speaking? 
I wish I had an ounce of that confidence. 
So on and so forth. 
I am not downplaying these remarks, confidence on the apraxia journey-or life journeys without Apraxia-is perplexing. 
Confidence appears arrogant if expressed inappropriately. 
Confidence appears insecure if expressed without humility. 
Confidence is difficult.
People mistake confidence for being a characteristic, or a person's trait. It's just "how they are."
To that, I disagree. 
Confidence is a choice. It's a constant, almost daily choice that a person makes.
One doesn't wake up and say "I'm going to be confident from here on out." 
Um, no!
If I let you in on a little secret, my confidence was tested at that Apraxia Conference. It always is. 
Sure, I can present-but I nervous talk. Every time I ba…

Conference Realizations

Just got back from the Apraxia Kids Conference in Pittsburgh. The information and expertise at your fingertips, every minute of the day, for two and a half days; it's empowering and overwhelming, in the best way possible.

I wish I could give a breakdown of each session for those reading this, but I cannot do them justice. The respective speakers covered a lot of material in so little of time; from techniques for fellow SLP's, the potential role of Genetics and the Brain on a child with CAS, other diagnoses that may play a role in this journey, firsthand experiences, and even Fathers' and Siblings' perspectives as well.

Simply put, there is something for everyone at this conference.

But, for me, this conference; I struggled with my own identity and what niche I related to. Sure I am a blogger and on the board, but even these are a small niche with a group of 500+ people.

You see, I am not an SLP.

I am not a Parent with a child diagnosed.

I am no longer an older child or…

Apraxia & Anxiety

My heart pounding loudly, yet only I could hear it.  My hands were sweaty, could others see it too?
I'm trying to breathe, but each attempt at a breath is hardly productive.
My office space seemed to be getting smaller and smaller, simply because of one simple question on an email. Not even a bad question, but an unexpected one. What do I say?  I don't know the answer, let me freak out instead. I start quickly brainstorming responses, but my brain quickly turned to mush and fancy terms are bouncing around with no coherent sense. 
At least now as an adult, I recognize my Anxiety Attacks. I recognize when I need to step away, walk away, hide in a bathroom stall and take 10-30 deep breaths. As an adult, I have this luxury to know my limits and do what I need to do.
This anxiety I am all too familiar with. I felt it every single time I said "Here" during Attendance in School, every time someone asked about my voice, and every time a Speech Therapist corrected me that mad…