Mafe Maria: Personal stories by autism parent mentor, Maria Stultz

Back to Spanish

Things are getting tricky and interesting at Joaquin’s house…
Nineteen months after asking me to stop talking Spanish (in order to focus his verbal development), he has decided that he wants to re-learn “Español”.

It started with this 5-year-old high-pitched voice nagging me every third word I said because I said it in English, and finally this week he’s asked me to speak Spanish the whole time. But man! What can I say?… The kid doesn’t understand Spanish as he used to.

So I notice my subtle stress because I think he only understands 20% of what I say, and sometimes I have to break the rule in order to give him explanations in moments of stress. But I’m noticing that not understanding my words completely may actually benefit his development of non-verbal communication. I’m having to readjust my routine (God, all this year has been about that!) and I think I’m finding balance, and I’m embracing this new direction he wants us to take even though it’s tricky. I’m having to take deep breaths and be VERY present, much more than usual. Maybe this is also for me. I mean, it’s always for me (and him).

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