I’ve just (maybe five minutes ago) found out that Jack spoke to a little girl in his nursery class today. Elin. She’s been mentioned before, several times. The teacher has said that Elin holds Jacks hand and directs him in play. But he never speaks. Only to the teacher. Jack is 4 and a half. In those years hes only ever spoken to immediate family, and then quite reluctantly. Although hard to understand, Jack can speak. It’s easy to forget that you are talking to a four year old, his vocabulary is extensive, his wit cutting and clever.
Today he chose Elin. He told her the best way to hang the curtains in the nursery doll house. Obviously, he knows best. Elin. A name I won’t ever forget. A child who has opened the door of possibility for Jack. A child who has reminded me how it feels to feel. I have silent tears streaming down my cheeks. I forgot what hope felt like. Endless rounds of “no, he can’t manage that”, “no, we’ve not achieved that” take their toll. There’s never enough time to add on all the can-do’s.
Speaking to another child, having a friend, has been a wish for Jack that I’ve had for as long as long as I can remember. When birthdays would click round and I’d realise there was not going to be a big party with lots of his friends, I’d be crushed. A party was usual. We don’t do usual. Jack doesn’t care for, or seek usual. Which is great. But a friendship, that feeling of another soul really getting yours, was so important to me for him. One experience I really didn’t want him to miss out on. Thanks to Elin, Jack knows how it feels. He said it felt ‘good’ And ‘good’ is the perfect place to start. x