My sweet little granddaughter, Maya Kirstin, will be three next month - on the 18th - but she was diagnosed a little over a year ago with developmental delays.
One aspect of the delays had affected her speaking - so a year ago this past June, the local Bright Horizons children's care group started working with her via two therapists - one to help with her behavior and the other is a speech therapist.
It took what at times seemed like forever before the therapist started to see any results of her efforts with Maya but now that the key has apparently been found, it has unlocked somewhat of a flood gate. Maya has been repeating so many things over and over now and even beginning to use words in the proper context too which is so fascinating to see her learning this skill.
Back in May, we noticed she was able to count - would count to 20 and then all of a sudden we realized she didn't just count, but she could recognize those number on sight and name them too. Within about a month, she began doing the same with the alphabet. Outstanding!
My daughter and I frequently sing little songs to her and the first one that we noticed she was picking up words from it is the Barney "I Love You" song. It was so comical because at first when we would sing "I love you, you love me" her response was "Me Ma Me" but she did it with little tonal variations there and we figured that was her way of saying "you love me". Then she picked up on the Great big hug for which she says "a gre be hu" - leaves off the last sound there and she would give hugs on that line and blow kisses on the last one "And a kiss from me to you."
Ok, we were really excited and happy about that little ditty apparently reaching her.
Then came "You are My Sunshine" and in that one she picks up a word here, a word there and frequently parrots "You sunshine" to us.
But this past Monday, out of the blue, she began her own version of the Birthday song. Her song goes like this:
Happy happy to you, Happy happy to you, happy happy to you. YEAAAAA! and then she claps and dances about with such glee and we all just go crazy watching and listening to her.
I have decided developmental delays are really a good thing through this whole time with the therapists and watching and waiting to see what she will come up with next.
Why? Because you know how much you love seeing the little ones and you think at times, if I could just keep you in this stage for as long as possible, well, for us, that is what the developmental delays have done. They have enabled us to enjoy Maya in this beautiful toddler-two-type age just a bit longer than we normally would have been able to have and to savor the beauty of this little one among us that much more!
She sure is Grammie's little princess - no doubt about that!