A to Z Parenting; Connection & Communication
A to Z Challenge '19,  Parenting

A to Z | Connection & Communication #AtoZChallenge

Hi there, everyone!

Welcome to the third post in my April A to Z Blogging Challenge! In case you missed it, be sure to check out the previous post in the series; Behavior, Boundaries, & Balance!

For the third day and the letter C, I chose Connection & Communication. The common theme and hope for my posts in this series is for the series to revolve around parenting and children, since that is a huge part of my life and the lives of my followers and readers.

But my goal is also to spend my time in this series reflecting on parenting as a whole, which I’ve spent a lot of time doing lately as we go through the motions and the steps of getting our son enrolled in a Birth to 3 Program. We’ve spent so much time talking about communicating and connections because these things are lacking so much right now in our day with our son, and it’s so frustrating.

Connection & Communication

Communicating with our children and feeling connected with them is not only a huge part of parenting, but in my opinion, also the biggest, most important part. This part of parenting has become crucial in our lives with the recent discovery of our son’s speech delay. We are constantly fighting for a way to communicate with our son and to make that connection with him.

When our children are born, we spend those first few weeks holding them, feeding them, caring for them and ultimately trying to find some way to connect with them that isn’t primarily verbal, because at that point they cannot reciprocate that verbal communication.

Even before they are born, we are trying to communicate with them and create a connection, a relationship, a feeling of closeness. And we spend our whole lives trying to establish and maintain that connection and strengthen that bond. We are constantly working to keep the lines of communication open. We struggle with being able to openly and honestly communicate with them when they’re older. We try to maintain that connection and relationship when they leave home and start their own lives. We spend our entire lives trying to communicate with our children.

What is a connection?

It’s a relationship in which a person, thing, or idea is linked or associated with something else.

If you look at the synonyms for connection, you’ll see words like relationship, association, attachment, bond, etc. All of these words are such powerful words! And I love every single one of them. We are constantly striving and working towards these things in life, constantly working on relationships, forming bonds and attachments, making associations. The word Connection sounds like such a plain, boring and simple word when really it’s this incredibly powerful word that packs a whole lot of meaning, which has ultimately been lost.

Recently, I’ve been using the word connection a lot to describe my interactions with my son, or the lack thereof, if you will. Because of Jackson’s speech delay, I feel like I am constantly struggling to make a connection with him; trying and failing to get his attention, trying to get down to his level and make eye contact to facilitate that connection where I feel like we are on the same pack, in the same space of time together. It feels like Jackson is in this glass bubble and we can’t penetrate that bubble to get through to him. There’s this barrier that’s preventing us most of the time from connecting and communicating with him.

But there are moments where we see him, and he sees us so clearly. It’s like all of the sudden his face lights up and he looks at you and he actually sees you! Yesterday I walked into Daycare to pick him up and he saw me, and he turned and that smile lit up his entire face! He ran for me and he yelled; “Hi Momma, how’re you?!” Clear as day. Like he had said it to me every single day of his life, except for that it was the first time he had actually ever put all of that together like that, with such certainty and confidence, with such enunciation! It was… magical.

It happened again today; my son climbed up on the couch beside me and actually looked right at me, brought my attention to him by making that connection with me and we actually had… a conversation! It sounds so weird to say it, because we have never really had a conversation with Jackson before and we are just starting to see this. And it’s a simple conversation, the same as the one we had yesterday at daycare; “Hi Momma, how’re you… I’m good. How’re you? Good.”

But we are communicating.

It may seem like such a simple, arbitrary and minute conversation to carry on, something that should’ve happened so long ago. But we are finally communicating!

What is communication?

The part of this definition I really want to focus on is, “the successful conveying or sharing of ideas and feelings.”

The successful conveying or sharing of ideas and feelings. That is such a powerful statement right there. It gives me chills, because that right there completely encompasses my struggle, every single day. We are constantly trying to communicate, but we are never successfully sharing ideas or feelings, thoughts or wants or desires. The message is never getting across. There is no back and forth right now. We are missing that part; the successful part.

“The exchanging of information…”

We are missing that, that exchange. And I never thought we would be missing such a big part of that in our lives right now, looking back. I never thought that this would be the struggle that we would have at this point. I thought we would be struggling with potty training or picky eating, and I mean we are struggling with those things, too, but this struggle is such a big part of our lives right now. It affects almost every single aspect of our day and our lives right now.

But we are seeing progress.

Most of his conversations right now are parroted or echoed, not at all his own words or thoughts. But this, this is a real conversation, completely coming from Jackson, totally his own thoughts and initiation and it’s so exciting! I’m constantly waiting for that connection, that moment where I see him and he actually sees me. And the pride and joy I feel when those moments come makes my heart swell and makes every single struggle along the way to those precious moments so worth it.

As we go through this journey, I hope some of you will take the time to share your experience with this type of parenting journey so that we feel a little less alone in this. I’d love to connect with parents who are going through the Birth to 3 Program or Speech, Emotional and Developmental Delays./

As always, I hope you enjoyed this post in my April A to Z Blogging Challenge. Next up will be the letter D; Direction, Discipline, & Disobedience.

Keep on lovin’ those little ones like only you know how, and this week don’t forget to spend a little extra time communicating and connecting with your little ones.

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