There are certain milestones that most parents look forward to with their children. Things like first steps, first words and the first day of school are major accomplishments for little ones!
But for parents of children on the autism spectrum, those milestones are not on any certain timeframe and may not happen at all. This is what one mother named Briana Blankenship became accustomed to with her 5-year-old daughter Taylor.
Doctors diagnosed Taylor with a form of autism called “nonverbal,” meaning she doesn’t communicate with speech. Even though she understands bits and pieces of the English language when people speak, coming up with her own words was not a possibility.
That all changed one day in the McDonald’s drive-thru line. Briana shared what happened in her car with the Love What Matters Facebook page:
“I AM UGLY CRYING IN THE MCDONALD’S PARKING LOT AND THE EMPLOYEES PROBABLY THINK I’M CRAZY. IN THE DRIVE-THRU, I SUDDENLY HEARD TAYLOR SAY ‘MAMA.’
FOR THOSE OF YOU THAT DON’T KNOW, TAYLOR IS FIVE AND IS NONVERBAL AUTISTIC. SHE HAS NEVER SAID A WORD. EVER.”
AS SOON AS SHE SAID IT I GRABBED MY PHONE AND STARTED RECORDING. I’M PRETTY SURE I HELD UP THE DRIVE-THRU LINE BUT THERE WAS NO WAY I WASN’T GETTING PROOF OF THIS.
I CAN’T EXPLAIN HOW UNBELIEVABLY GRATEFUL AND ECSTATIC I AM RIGHT NOW.”
This was such a huge moment for Taylor, and something Briana thought would never happen! Sometimes, life throws you surprises to make you smile — and this was definitely one of those happy surprises!
Hopefully, Taylor can practice her speech and will one day be able to communicate with words.
Take a peek at Taylor’s amazing milestone in the video below. What a blessing!