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Have you ever watched a mum fall in love with her child?

**(In this post I will use ‘mum’ to refer to any primary carer be it grandparent, foster carer or someone else spending time with a child).

Many years ago a mum and her 2.5 year old son attended the clinic for assessment.  Mum was feeling anxious because her son (middle of 3 children) was not yet talking.  He was pointing and showing what he wanted but was very reluctant to say anything.  Mum was pretty worried but also quite exasperated at the same time.

Stubborn was one word she often used to describe him.

I saw him every week and gently helped him to use some vocalisations and words.  He gradually came out of his shell and started to show his personality.  He was bright and he had a lot of ideas.  He had severely disordered speech but his expressive language was progressing.

But also something very beautiful began to happen.  Gradually mum’s demeanour toward him changed.  She was more patient with him and so much more encouraging.  They played together in these sessions with less tension and I could see mum was enjoying him.

He likes animals she told me.  They were going to an animal farm on the weekends.  She was proud of how observant he was of how the animals looked and what they ate.  She looked at him with real fondness and connection.  So different to when I had first met them.  Of course, mum was now less concerned about her son as he improved.  But even more so, she had found some common interests they could enjoy together.

I worked with them for some time afterwards as his speech sound system was so complex.  I could understand a lot of his speech but there were still times when I could not transcribe his utterances and I would look over to mum to interpret for me.  She was so in tune with him, that she could always decipher these productions.  Their bond was so real.

And that is why I still love this job after 30 years.