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Sunday, June 19, 2011

Our First Two-Way Conversation

It was Spencer's turn to go to the grocery with me and we went on Friday.
Here he is ready to go and impatiently waiting for Dad to come home and stay with his brothers. Waiting is never easy! And Dad is always late. ha. :) Spencer can say several words, but would still be considered nonverbal. He can ask for something, such as a hot dog, chips, bed, remote, things like that...they are 'wants' or 'requests'. He never has done a back and forth conversation and although this one was very simplistic, it is still the first ever!
Spencer has figured out what my shopping list is and what it means. He always reads it and makes sure I have printer paper and scotch tape on it! When we got into the Jeep and started to leave, he locked eyes with me, like he usually does. This means he wants me to say something. (As in read his mind, ha ha. That works with his brothers, but not usually with me!) But I knew this time he probably wanted to verify what he was going to get to buy at the grocery. So the conversation went like this ~

*****

ME ~ "So, at the grocery we will buy you hot dogs..."
SPENCER ~ "deedee" (means OK or yes)
ME ~ "cheese..."
SPENCER ~ "deedee"
ME ~ "paper and tape"
SPENCER ~ "deedee"
I stop, thinking we're done talking. Spencer turns sideways toward me and looks into my eyes.

ME ~ "You want to get something else?"
SPENCER ~ 'dee'
ME ~ "What?" Spencer just looks. "Say...I want..."
SPENCER ~ "D-D-D"
ME ~ "You want to get a DVD?"

Spencer nods. And looks out the windshield.

ME ~ OK! You can get a DVD, but just one!
SPENCER jerks his head and looks at me. "Two!"
ME ~ "You want two DVDs? ha ha...OK, you can get two!"

Aww! Isn't that great??? Sure made me smile! And if you have forgotten what Spencer's voice sounds like, or mine for that matter, you can listen to our saying body parts HERE. In fact, I really should do some more video clips. I still need to figure out how to do that on my new camera! Anyway, thanks for celebrating with me! And for those of you who pray for my boys, thanks very much. See...here's a wonderful answer! Certainly not in my timing, but then I'm learning that it's not all about me or what I want, either! :)

*****

As for the trip itself, Spencer has improved greatly since our trips last summer. Remember when he flashed his belly at the cashier and wanted to buy National Geographic's Border Wars, Vol. 1? Click here if you want to read about that. He did still push the cart way too fast, turn corners on two wheels and would have crashed into several people if I hadn't had a firm hold on the side of the cart. But he was much more patient, even on a Friday afternoon, with a crowded store and long check out lines. Although, I was exhausted when we got home! ha ha.

67 comments:

  1. ha...that is awesome betsy....flashed his belly...teehee...and nice choice on the d-d-d...smiles.

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  2. Well, you should have bought him two DVDs, since he asked so nicely, haha! Great news, and quite the accomplishment. I can't stress enough how cool this is for us "outsiders!"

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  3. Hooray for Spencer - He did great!

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  4. Thanks, Silver. And you know, he actually got three. How could I say no after that? ha. And thanks always for your personal encouragement and interest in the boys! xo

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  5. I would have wanted to buy him a million DVDs! I'm going to listen now ... wishing your OLDEST man Happy Father's day.

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  6. Thanks, Helen. I'll pass along the wishes. :)

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  7. Wonderful conversation! Seriously, I almost got a bit teary eyed...and I do pray for your family as well as other blogs I click on. Rick Warren calls them "breath prayers"...short prayers said spontaneously and quickly. And this conversation IS an answer to prayer. Have a joyful Father's Day weekend!

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  8. Aw, thanks Anita! I do that, too!

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  9. that is amazing. I'm so happy that you guys were able to communicate with each other like that. :D Have a wonderful weekend

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  10. Thanks for sharing your shopping story. I love hearing about successes in your men's lives. Today was a challenging day for me. My son, though verbal and high functioning, had a very angry day today. Lots of anger and self mutilation. I pray for you often.

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  11. That is fantastic! Definitely worth the price of 2 dvd's. Thanks for sharing!

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  12. That is fantastic!!!!! You are so right about the timing;-) Big hugs to you!!! Way to go, Spencer!

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  13. *Cheers for Spencer!* I work with children who have Autism and I understand how important all accomplishments are, no matter how small or when in life they arrive.

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  14. This is one of my most favorite conversations, ever and I mean that! :) I would love to one day have a similar one with Clee.
    Your boys seem so mild tempered. Clee has started throwing loud tantrums and they're becoming overwhelming at times. Did your boys ever have a phase like this? If so, did they move on from it quickly?? ;)

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  15. I'm smiling. I know the way of eyeball communication. It usually said, "Hey, sister, I'd really like to finish up that milkshake for you." And then there are the smiles, the inside joke giggles, and the tender way he, my big brother, looks at his and my baby sister. :)

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  16. natalie ~ oh, Clee will...when you least expect it! Don't give up!

    Alex is our tantrum thrower. But he takes Naltrexone for it and it works wonders. Seriously. It really improved his quality of life...and ours. He had really started to get violent..usually from frustration in not being able to communicate.

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  17. natalie ~ he picked Beauty and the Beast, a Scooby Doo and a Thomas the Tank Engine. Wow...what a range of tastes, huh? haha.

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  18. Just wait until he says FIVE!

    I agree with Silver, it is very cool for us "outsiders".
    And I liked what Antia said about "breath prayers". That's just what I do, a lot!
    Like right now!

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  19. Christine ~ he's tried to buy a ton before. I think he believes it's like the library and he can get a big stack! haha.

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  20. He did great !
    He certainly knows what he wants, and how to get it.
    Flashing his belly indeed :)
    ~Jo

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  21. Thank you for sharing, this made me so very, very happy! Spencer is quite a negotiator, but in this case I'd say he earned that extra DVD. A precious boy, a precious mama, and I'm LOVING your header!

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  22. Thanks, Christian, dear. :)

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  23. I'll have to look in to that. Clee is taking risperidone and that worked wonders for him when we first started a year ago, but I think he's become immune to it now because it's not as affective.

    Spencer sounds like Clee! On a recent outing tp target Clee chose the movies Hairspray, and our 3rd copy of Monsters Inc. :)

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  24. natalie ~ my boys take risperidone, and have since they were 4 years old. Maybe he needs the dosage increased? Although you can't go too high on that because of some weird side effects. Yes, look into the naltrexone. Our guys also have taken prozac for years and that really helps, too.
    Let me know if you try anything new. :)

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  25. You just gotta love Spencer!!!

    I can only echo Silver Fox, and how much I appreciate being invited into your life and the life of your boys.

    Happy Father's day to the TOP Man!

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  26. Absolutely Awesome Betsy! There is absolutely no way you could have said no after such an amazing event!! Way to go Spencer. Plus, he wasn't being greedy.. he could have picked a bigger number than two. Such a beautiful young man.

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  27. Oh he played that well
    Bravo I must tell
    Knowing you couldn't say no after that
    And getting three dvds off the rack
    The first two I prob have too
    But the third I draw the line at to view..lol
    That's great you finally had a conversation between the two of you
    Lets hope that leads to tons more that are new

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  28. Pat ~ aw, look at you being so sweet
    nothing bad about my post you could tweet.
    But tomorrow I'm sure you'll make up for it then
    and the teasing will come again!

    Yea, can't blame you on the Thomas dvd's. lol....

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  29. AMAZING! Thanks so much for sharing.

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  30. That's awesome! So glad you shared it with us.

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  31. Oh, Bets, that's awesome.

    I have to ask, though. Did her get two DVDs, and was one of them about the border patrol?

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  32. I am so proud of Spencer. I know there is so much more he will tell you some day, and maybe soon! I would love to stay with two of them for you when you go shop, or all three so you can go alone sometime. Let me know!

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  33. Fantastic! In his own time...who knows what's next! I just love this post and what a wonderful surprise for all of you..;j

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  34. Have a sweet father day...
    Regards from france,

    Pierre

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  35. aww, I have tears in my eyes. So happy for his progress!

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  36. Betsy, after recovering from my school year...(it has taken nearly month) I am trying to enjoy the summer. I came here hoping to read about one of your outings with your Three Men! Progress at the low cost of 2 DVD's! God bless you and all your men!

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  37. What a thrill for you! I know those little steps forward can be few and far between. It's so nice when they happen.

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  38. YEAH! So awesome! Now, watch out, cause the next time Spencer is going to ask for FIVE D-D-D's! And you are gonna be so excited you will BUY them for him!! :)

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  39. Happy Father's Day to your hubby and Happy Mother's Day to you Bets.

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  40. Betsy, your life is full of so many ups. I'm not going to say downs because I think you have such a gift for being able to see the positive in most any situation. What an amazing day this must have been. Connecting with Spencer on this level. Awesome!

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  41. I am so happy to read this. I know it must be difficult at times but I'm sure the gems like this are fulfilling and rewarding.

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  42. Wow these small breakthroughs must lift your spirits, they certainly lift mine!

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  43. Aw Betsy, that is so sweet....I know you would have bought him 2 or more just for asking.....awesome job Spencer!

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  44. cute post betsy....

    always happy to stop by for a visit with you, my friend

    sending love,
    kary and teddy
    xo

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  45. Aw, thanks everybody. You know, it is true that the little breakthroughs are few and far between. And just the time I think we may have reached all that there is to reach and when I least expect it, something like this happens. So encouraging! :)

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  46. That is so special! The anticipation in his eyes and he did so well getting the message across! I'm happy for you...xa

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  47. I'm amazed that you fit so much into a day! Shopping with Spencer, blogging, photography and the cooking and housework! Just how long are the days in America? Ours are only 24 hours long and I have a job fitting all the chores in; and I live alone! Why didn't I meet someone like you 50 years ago when I was young and handsome?

    I watched the video. Love your mid-west accent. . . .

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  48. Aww, Keith!!! You just made my day. You may not be young, but you are still charming and handsome, dear! :)

    Midwest accent, huh? Yes, I've heard that before. Funny how you don't know you have an accent until someone points it out!

    Thanks for visiting... xo

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  49. ABSOLLUTELY ASTONISHING! I'm sooo happy for you Mom! It's so true...the little things in life really are the BIG things! LOVE spending time with you here - thanks for inviting us into your intersting life. XO

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  50. I love this blog!!! This marvelous blog!!! :0)

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  51. That is stupendous and definitely something to note and enjoy, Betsy. Really wonderful and thank you so much for sharing with us all.

    As for the "Border Wars" DVD, the flashing belly and such, how could we ever forget? LOL!! To this day, it still makes me just crack up.

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  52. Betsy...I cried when I read this!! I am so excited for you!! That is awesome...I want to hear about the next one and the next one, etc. Can't wait to see the boys I already miss them. I guess I will have to wait until August.

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  53. Great stuff. I am celebrating with you! Really pleased for you both. These steps of progression are so exciting, whatever they are and whenever they come.
    My daughter bought me 'The Good Granny Guide' for my birthday. I can't wait to put that into practice!

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  54. \o/ Yay for Spenser!!!!
    hehehehe
    Yay for Betsy too!

    You joked about making me come with you and one of the boys...I am only a state away...You'll be surprised when I show up one day :)
    xo
    Birdie

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  55. Cynthia ~ hey, you! At first I was thinking, "Who is Cynthia?" :) But I figured it out! ha.

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  56. Well done to both Spencer and you. An amazing day for both of you, although sounds like Spencer just took it all in his stride.

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  57. I am glad you figured it out!!! I would love to see the boys sometime this summer!!

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  58. Never has 'two' sounded so sweet!
    Millie x

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  59. I knew he had to get at least one dvd! He definitely deserved two after that conversation. Now Harry!

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  60. Good job Spencer! I'm glad you deserved thsi special treat!

    I went over to the past post to listen you you going over his body parts with him and I was cheered to see how engaged he was a happy to respond well! You are so patient and cheerful with him Betsy ..it was nice to hear your pleasant voice!

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  61. OH, thanks, Pat. Yes, Spencer is the most engaged of the three. And doing those little speech therapy type of exercises with him is really very fun!

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  62. i was also curious to what DVDs he picked. found my answer in the comments. i see he got 3 DVDs finally. smart choice, i think, his pick.
    :)~
    HUGZ

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