Katie G (Salem, Or, OR US)

As an infant my daughter, Shelby, never really babbled. She never smiled with her mouth open, or even gave open mouth wet baby kisses. Originally I thought it was cute, but as she got older and she didn’t open her mouth to speak I became worried that she was deaf. She had passed her hearing test at birth, but mumbled everything. At her 2 year appointment the doctor referred us to an early intervention program, where her hearing was tested again. As it turns out she hears fine, they also tested her for autism, which she is not. We came to learn that she is speech delayed. Immediately two emotions overwhelmed them, first I was relieved to hear we had not missed early indicators of autism and second I felt guilty that I was unable to give her what she needed to learn to speak. We met with a speech pathologist who recommended a speech group class for Shelby. In this class she interacts with children who are also speech delayed. I felt at home. One of the moms in this group praised Signing Time, and how her son loves to watch it. So I found it on PBS and recorded it for my Shelby. Within watching the same episode twice she was signing play, clean up and blocks. That was almost 2 months ago now. She signs all the time, and insists we watch Signing Time before bed each night. The first time she spoke the word up to me I cried. She signed up, and then said it. Her speech is coming along so nicely, and I am always so impressed with how she signs. She loves to sign along with songs. I can not thank you enough for what you have brought to our lives. No longer do we have to guess what she wants. She can tell me, want drink milk. Or play outside please. Shelby’s older sister, and younger brother are learning to sign, and it warms my heart to see them grow and learn so much every day!