Dear Rachel,

I have been inspired by you in so many ways.  I have sung your praises to at least a hundred people so it is time I shared my story with you.  We began our Signing Time exposure about two years ago.  My daughter, Darby is now five and her brother Jameson is two years old.  Not only do I love the videos for the amazing music and signs, but because of the wonderful lessons like setting the table and colors of the rainbow.  My daughter has not yet started kindergarten but is already a great reader and I attribute that to Signing Time.  I believe the preparation with sign language helped her develop her listening and reading skills faster than she would have without this knowledge.

As a physician, I list the “routine” benefits of sign language for babies but go on to provide Darby’s example.  I explain how I believe she started to learn word sounds by the similar signs–like how fox, fruit and family all incorporate the sign for “f” giving her another connection with the letter sounds.  I believe this foundation helped her learn to read so quickly.  I think my son is the only two year that knows how to spell p-a-r-k,  again thanks to your guidance.  As a mom it is also so exciting for the kids to have another means to express themselves.  It has been a great way to communicate with them at the playground or across the room.  Darby was even fortunate enough to use a few signs with a deaf child we met at a playground.  I also like to share the story about Jameson making his first joke in sign language.  He was almost two years old and his speaking skills were pretty basic so I would not have understood this joke if he had attempted it with verbal language.  One day instead of signing, “See you later, Alligator”  he signed “See you later, Elevator.”  It was a very sweet moment.

But despite how much my children have learned from you, it pales in comparison to my experience.  I am an emergency physician and have been able to translate for patients on several occasions. Of course, we seek assistance from a professional translator, but it has been amazing to communicate and ease the discomfort of patients while waiting for a translator to arrive.   I was also fortunate enough to translate for a passenger on an airplane who was deaf and unable to read lips.  People did not want to sit by her secondary to this perceived deficiency, so it warmed my heart to be able to sit by her and share the flight with her.

Perhaps your biggest inspiration to me has been to see you follow a passion.  I have recently started to explore professional and business opportunities, and as you know, sometimes the climb seems an impossible task.  And although I have come through some storms already, you were my hero throughout.  It was a great reminder to see how you turned your challenges into a blessing for the rest of the world.  I cannot understand how difficult it is to raise a special needs child, but I can appreciate the long and sleepless hours you have spent in attempt to make the lives of your children even better.  As a mom who has benefited from the fruits of your labor, I thank you.  Yes, as a business, you have my full support.  Not only do we have most of your products, but I share them as gifts and refer many of my patients to your website.

Just wanted you to know the story the sales do not show and how your lessons have transcended any material possession and just in my own circle have influences many lives.   I thank you and I look forward to the next chapter of Signing Time.