Tuesday, December 9, 2008

LOOK and LISTEN

People working with Daniel generally learn things quickly when it comes to his communication skills and his intelligence.

  1. You need to WATCH Daniel. He is non-verbal. If you're not going to take the time to look at him while you are asking him something, you're not going to see his answer.
  2. He communicates with his eyes and his facial expression. Eye contact is a must when talking with Daniel.
  3. Daniel knows how to use switches and buttons to communicate. Yes he has problems moving his arms sometimes. Give him a little extra time and you will see he knows what you're asking and what his answer is, just give him the time to get his body to answer the way he wants it too. It takes many more and different muscles to get his arm to move than it does for you!
  4. Don't assume just because he is Spastic Quad that he is mentally challenged. He is not. Daniel has a very unique way of knowing if you are being fake. (So do his parents!) Don't TRY to pretend you care if you don't. Just stay away from him then, we don't need your bullsh*t. Don't waste his/our time. We have nothing to prove to you. You are no body that means anything to Daniel's future. We will find someone else to get us to our destination and Daniel's success.
  5. Daniel is very smart. I am not just saying this because I am his parent. Ask the people who have been working with him for years. Ask his doctors. Just because his body outwardly doesn't cooperate doesn't mean that his brain isn't working.
When you come into the picture and basically "read" about Daniel in your paperwork and reports. No it doesn't read well. Have you never heard the saying "Don't judge a book by its cover?". Well, same goes for Daniel. Don't judge Daniel by medical/educational reports. Have an open mind and talk to Daniel. He understands you. You don't need to speak loudly, he isn't deaf, he is non verbal.

If you're walking into Daniel's life and you think you've already got him pegged because you read some where that he has a brain malformation, seizures, and spastic quad cp so he isn't going to do much. Turn around and walk back out the door you just came in. Because you are now OFFICIALLY not invited to meet the coolest kid you'll ever know. You miss out on the chance to see some really awesome accomplishments. And most of all, you just plain and simple don't get the opportunity to have Daniel in your life. Goodbye.

Hopefully what you'll learn from this experience is that just because someone is labeled a certain way doesn't make them less of a person. Doesn't make you better than him. You aren't and you never will be.

Have a nice day.

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

You go girl. Well said. Daniel is VERY smart and a wonderful kid to be around. He never ceases to amaze me. I'd love to change his disabilities, but would not change his disposition, sense of humor or anything else for that matter.

The truth is, I really don't care what anyone else has to say. Most people are generally ignorant. Not only about disability, but life in general. They can't figure out their own lives, but have a million answers and solutions for everyone else.

Daniel is the best thing that ever happnened to me. I don't need any evaluations, tests or opinions from idiots to realize that.

Love you Daniel,
Dad

Anonymous said...

Daniel is the superest brother ever- screw what anyone else thinks. Obviously there opinion isnt worth listening too if they are going to ignorant and oblivious of the awesomeness of Daniel!
-Sister C

MeghatronsMom said...

Again, please feel free to adopt this phrase MM's doctor uses for her: Just cause her body WON'T doesn't mean her mind DON'T!


ITA with Daniel's daddy & sister!

Bird said...

Don't you love how we have to write instruction manuals for our kids? I hope that we are blazing a trail by keeping these blogs--letting people know that kids with disabilities are still just kids.

Ellen said...

What a great post. Sometimes, I've gotten a kick out of seeing doctor's reactions when they've read Max's history before meeting him. Because on paper, he looks awful. Our kids kick butt!!!!!

C said...

Q's first preschool eval is tomorrow and I'm putting off sleeping. I'm tired of re-explaining everything to the "new people" and then having to drag them into recognition that he's totally "in there."

We had one replacement therapist who talked loudly to him. Hearing is perhaps the ONE thing he has no issue with. She was trying to be extra sweet and everything? But at this point it just makes me more tired.

Nice post, madame. You rock.

Sara said...

I don't really know you, other than through this blog you have created for Daniel and the swap that we just participated in, but I have been reading his blog and I can tell that you are such a good mommy. That was very honest and sweet, and after reading the comments from Dad above, I know that Daniel will thrive because the two of you are so loving and caring and you stand up for your little boy!

Mommie Mayhem said...

You go Mommy !! Amen to that !