It’s funny how things come to you for no reason at all, sometimes.
For example: we are setting up this super-dooper wonderful does-it-all Tobii Dynavox communication computer for Pádraig. One thing, amongst many, it can do for him is to allow him to click his way through a menu we have set up for him, using a simple switch (well, it’s not that ‘simple’).
So he can let us know, amongst other things, what he wants to wear (haven’t used that one very much yet) or what he wants to eat or drink (that’s the one we mostly work on at the moment). This is so good and gives him great means to express himself and let us know his preferences.
But, today I noticed that one BIG aspect was missing from this communication stuff we have set up so far. Questions. To the people around him. There are no questions. Like: How are you? What have you been doing? How are you feeling? Are you sad/happy/tired/ok/energised/…? Can you spend more/less time with me? Where would you like to go today? How was your day? – As if all what he wanted to communicate was about himself. As if he was not interested in the life of the people around him. As if he didn’t care. As if all he wanted to let us know was that he preferred banana milk right now to tea. Kinda.
I thought about this because two of Pádraig’s really good friends visited today. One after the other:) And both asked loads of questions. They did not tell me what they wanted to eat or drink – or anything like that. And I thought: this is the way you talk with people. This is how conversations work. You show interest. You ask them about their day, their life, their interests. And when they ask you, you tell them.
Communication. Life itself. It’s a 2-way thing.
PS: Heard today that a big Irish American Magazine in San Francisco will publish a picture and an article written by our friend in Napa about our fundraising cycle, probably next week. Brilliant news! Next year, I’m sure they’ll help us to promote our US event ahead of it happening!