A place to show my love for my granddaughter who lives with Cerebral Palsy and my passion for painting. In an effort of raising awareness for C.P. every painting brush stroke I make on raw canvas is a stroke of love, as I discretely paint a green C.P. awareness ribbon in every piece. Can you find them?
Do you know someone who would like to have a painting done? email www.harrold.janet@gmail.com

Friday, October 26, 2012

Hailey Strikes Up a Conversation!

What’s that you say? Hailey carried on a conversation? With who? How? Isn’t Hailey non verbal? Yes, she is non verbal and yes, she actually initiated a conversation with one of the teachers at school. For all of my typically developing friends and family members, let me pose this question to you...can you imagine, even for one day that you you can’t speak? You are hurting, but you can’t explain to the doctor where you hurt, or you are hungry and you cannot say, “hey i’m hungry, can we have pizza tonight” maybe you know all the answers when someone asks a question, but you just can’t blurt it out, you can’t even write it down. Can you imagine, just for one day not being able to express your feelings aloud (good or bad) How frustrating would that be? Maybe you need help, but you can’t ask for it. How scary? Can you imagine? This is only one of the many challenges that Hailey and so many others face every single minute of everyday. We definitely take speaking for granted. Over the years we have tried so many ways to be able to communicate with Hailey. We learned a bit of sign language, and that was helpful, but Hailey can not really manipulate her fingers, the way that you need to for signing. She does however do an approximation for a couple of words such as water , and ice-cream. All together I would say she has less than 12 words that she can sign or approximate. Every little bit helps to cut down on the frustration level, but the older Hailey gets. The more we think that she should be forming full sentences, and today she did just that! Hailey has a communication device that she uses predominantly at school, this augmentative and alternative communication product is a computer that allows those who are non-verbal or with limited speech to be able communicate with the world. The device has been customized for Hailey, with her family members names, t.v. programs she likes, food she eats etc.etc. At school Hailey has a personal aide to help her, this is a conversation that her aide said she had in the school hallway today! Posted on facebook by Natalie... PROUD MOMMY MOMENT!! Hailey doesn’t like to use her “talker” dynavox with us as much at home as she does at school and we think it’s because we understand her better, but today at school she spotted someone in the hallway that she didn’t know, seeing the puzzled look on her face her aide said “Oh, that’s Mr. Hugh”, the older kids gym teacher. She then went to the page on her talker where her teachers have been uploaded and noticed that he wasn’t there, she went back to a blank page and pushed it towards her aide so she would put his name in. Then Hailey pushing the appropriate icons said “Mr. Hugh I have a brother named Brody” (she formed this sentence herself btw!!) :) and I guess he said “Oh really, nice!” and she said “little brother” then she went to the page that allows her to ask questions and said “do you have any brothers or sisters?” It turns out he does and I guess Hailey got real happy with the response. Just knowing that she can have a conversation with someone she doesn’t even know is just amazing to me!! Needless to say, we were just ecstatic and for one split moment the roles were reversed and Hailey had left US speechless.


  1. My son is non-verbal and uses an AAC device too. Slowly but surely we are seeing him progress with the use of his 'talker.' He is starting to put more and more words together - so I totally understand how excited you must have been to hear about Hailey's conversation with Mr. Hugh. Way to go, Hailey!

  2. This page caught my attention because of it's cool and nice content and it looks like the blog of painting Toronto.

  3. This is the coolest story! I can't even imagine how thrilled you must be.

  4. How beautiful! hailey sounds like she is doing brilliantly!!! My son also uses an ACC device however is verbal but speech is severly dysarthic also having Athetoid cp.