Living with a speech and language delay
My three daughters have a specific language impairment (SLI). It is an impairment that will stay with them for life.
But the good news is, this condition can be managed well with the help of teachers trained in working with language delayed children. In addition to any necessary speech pathology services.
Unfortunately, though, children aren’t always given the attention, care and nurturing that they deserve and require. And for children with language delays, this can be incredibly detrimental.
So, as I was having this impromptu meeting with the principal, we discussed what else schools could do to support my children, as well as other children too. She wholeheartedly agreed that we need to fight for our children so they get the best help possible.
Make your voice matter
This discussion also reminded me about the fact I had recently joined my girls’ two school P&C committees. How I noticed there was a need for more voices, more hands, more minds – and I decided it was time to take part. I was no longer content to be looking in from a bystander’s point of view. I wanted to do my part to make a difference.
As a survivor of child abuse, I strongly wish that I’d had someone to stick up for me. That I didn’t have to carry my secret for the past 20 years. That someone had been my voice. That they had been my advocate.
But I don’t have that. I have my own voice. The voice that’s speaking up for my own children now.
This is now my opportunity to give my children the best start in life.
If we don’t fight for our children’s rights and best interests, then who will?
The catalyst for change
When a letter came home from my girls’ school that informed parents that the school needed help fighting a cause, I got angry just like them. That’s when I realised that anger alone would get me nowhere. I had to stand up myself and help to make a change.
It’s so easy to know what the wrong thing to do is, but it’s much more proactive to work together to find out what the right thing to do is.
Now that I’m reaching out my hand and speaking on my children’s behalf, I feel a much stronger connection between me and their schools.
True change happens when you take responsibility for changing the future.
So, I will continue to speak up at my children’s schools. I will continue to voice my opinions and thoughts.
I will continue to be my children’s biggest advocate.
Because when they are older, I want to be able to look at my kids and think, “I did the best I could and I’m proud of my efforts.”
Thuy Yau is a freelance writer and mother of three. She is passionate about personal development and psychology. Her work has been discussed on radio, won writing contests, and appeared on major sites such as: The Huffington Post UK and news.com.au. She is on her way to becoming a qualified Youth Worker. Check out her blog at http://insideamothersmind.com