Winter is a time of restlessness. I hate being inside, but I hate the cold more. To channel my energy, I clean. This addresses my OCD, pleases the husband and Jess likes to help. To her, cleaning is like opening a time capsule!
The most recent discovery was her AAC history. We found word boards, communication books, necklaces, and PECS. As I remember, whenever a new communication system was introduced, we were told not to use any other AAC because “it might confuse her”. I understand school wanted Jess to use one system, but just like any language that you learn, you don’t suddenly stop understanding. Jess looked at her old AAC’s like one would look at photographs. I wonder what memories these sparked? Does she think about her classmates or her teachers? I may never know.
When she finds a wayward PEC (that is one of the biggest flaws in that system no order), she will still hand it to me. In fact, I think she purposefully stashed the cookie PEC just for this purpose!
Even though Jess is using the app Speak for Yourself on her Talker (that is what we named her iPad), it doesn’t mean that she won’t use other ways to communicate. She uses gestures and her body language and when push comes to shove, she uses her voice. Last night, she was in another room and she was being verbal. I couldn’t quite make out what she was saying. Then she called MOM! I could hear the distress in her voice and I quickly moved in her direction. Jess was standing by the hall closet. Apparently, she had reached for one of her yearbooks that were precariously stacked on top of other books on the shelf above her head Her hands were holding up the unsteady books to prevent the avalanche. Jess was either protecting her head or her feet. As I rescued her from this predicament, I said: “I hate it when that happens!”.
In this situation, Jess didn’t have access to her talker, and obviously pointing to a picture wasn’t possible. I’m kind of happy that I hadn’t organized that closet yet because it reminded her that she does have a voice.
Yes, there are unknown hazards when cleaning.