He Talks in His own Special Way

cooper 8

Tonight my son Cooper was listening to a song on his iPad.

The tune was familiar. In fact, I bet I’ve been hearing the same song on and off for eight plus years.

I was doing something in the kitchen when he came in.

My three year old was hungry.
My baby wanted to nurse.
My kitchen was dirty.

And here comes my son, dancing.

He touched my arm for a second. Then a second longer.

He forced my attention. He smiled. A smirk really.

And he touched my ear.

That means listen in his world.

So I stopped what I was doing.

I stopped making and cleaning and rushing.

‘Every animal talks in their own special way.’

That’s what the song said.

When the words registered, he touched his own chest. Then lips.

Then my lips.

And smiled.

He was telling me he talks in his own special way.

Nonspeaking autism. Nonverbal autism. Call it what you want.

Then he growled. Like a polar bear in the song.

How’s that for talking in your own special way.

I’m so lucky to have a person in my life who demands that I slow down. And dance in the kitchen. And listen with more than my ears.

Two more sleeps until the weekend. That’s what he was telling me. He loves the weekend. Because our family is all together.

Finding Cooper’s Voice is a safe, humorous, caring and honest place where you can celebrate the unique challenges of parenting a special needs child. Because you’re never alone in the struggles you face. And once you find your people, your allies, your village….all the challenges and struggles will seem just a little bit easier. Welcome to our journey. Follow us on FacebookInstagram, and join our supporter page, Coop’s Troops, for an amazing community full of support and understanding.




Kate Swenson

Kate Swenson lives in Minnesota with her husband Jamie, and four children, Cooper, Sawyer, Harbor and Wynnie. Kate launched Finding Cooper's Voice from her couch while her now 11-year-old son Cooper was being diagnosed with autism. Back then it was a place to write. Today it is a living, thriving community of people who want to not only advocate for autism, but also make the world a better place for individuals with disabilities and their families. Her first book, Forever Boy, will be released, April 5, 2022.

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