Today I'm getting rid of these how-to books and kits for kids with speech problems. They date back to when Ben was a preschooler and I was heavily invested in trying to get him to talk. I brought them in to work years ago to pass along to a speech therapist, but somehow they stuck with me, like the lists of words that Ben spoke as a toddler but hasn't uttered in 15 years.
These books once had a place at home in a cupboard along with bulk quantities of coloured horns of all shapes and sizes, straws, tongue depressors, teddy bear bubble blowers, pink sponges on sticks to stimulate the gums, plastic tubing to chew on and a deck of recipe cards with typed instructions on how to perform a gazillion mouth, tongue and cheek exercises.
If I could only buy enough supplies, perform enough oral-motor exercises, squeeze out enough word attempts.
More to come on why it was particularly hard for me to accept that my child would never speak.