“So are you going anywhere for Winter Break?” I asked my brother and sister-in-law when we were finally in the same city for Thanksgiving.
“Miami,” they answered with mild excitement.
“Ooo, can we see Johana when we’re there?” said my nephew to his parents.
My sister-in-law nodded and then explained that Johana had been their au pair for four years. Then followed a litany of praises for the young woman credited with their survival. Being the parents of two young children while both pursuing professional careers was nearly impossible without excellent supports in place. They were grateful for the “Johana years” and rightfully so. One comment caught my attention though. “Johana practiced speech homework with Brett every day.”
I had completely forgotten that 1000 miles away from Cleveland my young nephew had been enrolled in speech therapy. My brother had asked me for advice at the time, and I had encouraged him to contact a local speech-language pathologist. Now there was no residual evidence of an articulation problem of any kind. It was a speech therapy success story that I had not participated in.
Brett corrected his father. “It wasn’t Johana, though, that practiced with me every day. It was the other one, Laura.”
“No, it was Johana.”
“No, it was Laura.”
And so it went back and forth between Johana and Laura for a while until they finally dropped it. After all, what mattered really was that they’d be seeing Johana in Miami, –and that Brett no longer had a speech problem.
But I was lost in thought. Brett’s parents were in a unique position to be able to outsource daily speech therapy practice to a live-in childcare provider. The outcome was excellent albeit not replicable for most families.
Enter TikTalk. It won’t pick your kids up from soccer practice, and it won’t pack their lunches; but it will practice speech therapy homework with your child every day.