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mastering the language

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

When we brought Anya home in '02, one of the first things I did was call in the Early Intervention folks. We knew there would be significant delays and we wanted to get her some help as soon as possible.
The lady came over to the house, visited with Anya (and Nick) and promptly told us what we already knew...Anya had a significant vocabulary delay.
'Ummmm....she just came home from Russia,' we said.
'That doesn't matter,' she insisted.
'She still qualifies for some extra help.'
So...we got her that help. Every week for the last six years
(except during the summer, on vacations and for about a year when Kansas wouldn't recognize her IEP), Anya has been getting help with her vocabulary.

Every week she worked on learning new words, deciphering their meaning and committing them to memory.
Today, I got a call from Anya's speech teacher. It is time for the three year review of her Individual Education Plan (IEP) and so she's been testing Anya over the last couple of days. Anya has two things on her IEP. One is speech. We're still working on a little bit of pronunciation...although she's come along way.
The other thing is language.
But not any more.
According to Mrs. M~, Anya blew her vocabulary test out of the water. 'There is no way this child qualifies for language assistance any more. She probably hasn't qualified for some time. She did great!'
I cried.
Good tears.
Anya has come such a long way in the six years since we brought her home. And in my mind, language was the one last hurdle. The last visible 'leftover' from her days in the orphanage.
Now, six years after walking out of the babyhouse in Syktyvkar, Russia, Anya has finally shaken off the last bit of orphanage.

She's moved beyond it.
Its in her past now.
She's no longer constrained by what happened to her there.
Sure there may be little hidden issues - things we're not seeing right now that may pop up (there's still the possibility of Auditory Processing issues) but for us language was a biggie.
I can now honestly say, Anya knows English as well, if not better, than the other kids in her second grade class.
And that feels awesome!

20 salty messages:

Diana January 7, 2009 at 6:19 PM  

Yeah!!! Yeah!!!! Yeah!!!!

Jill January 7, 2009 at 7:53 PM  

That is AWESOME! :o)

Tina in CT January 7, 2009 at 8:05 PM  

What a wonderful post to read about Anya! I can imagine your crying tears of joy! Wonderful!

AdoptaMama January 7, 2009 at 8:45 PM  

Great accomplishment! You have every right to be proud. And so does she!

I can so not wait for that day to come for us. Katrina never qualified for early intervention of any kind and she was almost 3 when she joined our family. Alena on the other hand, has been in speech from early on and now 3.5 years later has been release from speech, but still qualifies for language therapy. One day we'll get there, but for now we keep plugging along. :)

Once again, great news about Anya. She's awesome!

Carolynn and Steve January 7, 2009 at 9:28 PM  

That is just amazing! Wow! Happy Dancing here for you and Anya!

Karlana January 7, 2009 at 9:44 PM  

Awe! That is an awesome success story! But I firmly believe that Anya would not have been as successful if she did not have supportive parents who stayed on top of these things for her IEP. So many kids with IEPs do not progress very much because their parents are not active with the learning process.

So, Mom, way to go for you, too!

Bethany January 7, 2009 at 10:11 PM  

Wow! What fabulous progress!

kate January 8, 2009 at 12:28 AM  

Hooray! I always look forward to Anya stories. She's a little heart-stealer. I'm so glad to hear she's passed this milestone.

MamaPoRuski January 8, 2009 at 12:53 AM  

Woo Hoo!
Don't worry much about the pronounciation...she just needs to move to the West Coast and tell everyone it's the midwest accent...

Rachael January 8, 2009 at 6:07 AM  

Good for her!

P.S. I really like the style of your new 3 column layout. Did you do this yourself or did you find the template somewhere?

Courtney January 8, 2009 at 7:32 AM  

Yea Anya!!

I am so excited to be starting down that path! Dima has his second speech eval (for insurance purposes) next week. Soon...soon...we will have therapy!

jessy January 8, 2009 at 8:02 AM  

How wonderful for her! Congratulatioins!

jessy January 8, 2009 at 8:03 AM  

Oh, and I love your header. Where did you do it?

Svetlana January 8, 2009 at 9:33 AM  

That is great News!!I love your blog color and headboard

Anonymous,  January 8, 2009 at 4:15 PM  

Way to go Anya! And way to go mom, making sure she got the early help she needed. You rock. :)

kate January 9, 2009 at 3:19 AM  

like the new tagline (etc.)...

Chelle January 9, 2009 at 8:43 AM  

That is so wonderful! I am so inspired by the fact that you decided to adopt from Russia. We looked into that as an option when we were doing infertility and it scared me because of the really high potential for fetal alcohol syndrome. I am so thankful for people like you who didn't let that get in your way, and for being strong enough to help these children develop as normally as possible. You're amazing.

Big congrats to Anya!

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