A Boy and His Voice

I started this blog two and a half years ago, and in that time I’ve had several requests from readers who had an interest in hearing Nigel’s voice, wanting to see (or hear) him in action. I’m guessing that most of them had read some of the earlier posts I’d written about Nigel’s characteristically stoic, flat voice, and either wanted to compare it to their children’s voices or were just curious. Since that time, Nigel’s voice has continued to evolve. It’s been almost two years since I first started to notice voice inflection, an unexpected gift.  And now, well, you can hear (and see) for yourself.

One of the reasons why I hadn’t posted any videos of Nigel before is because I wanted him to tell me when he was ready. I never mentioned it or made any suggestions – I wanted it to be completely his idea. And last week, he posted his first video on You Tube. He filmed himself talking about his new channel and his ideas for it. The time has come, and I am thrilled to share it with you!

As you watch it, keep in mind that this is from a boy whose speech was severely limited before age five, when a doctor asked his name and he could not answer. Ten years ago, I never dreamed that he’d be able to do these things as a teenager, to speak in complex sentences and upload videos to a website. How does a mostly non-verbal five-year-old progress to this point? I had no idea that it was possible because I had nothing to refer to at the time. Nigel was in an intensive, ABA-based program for two whole years before we started hearing spontaneous speech, and we kept him in the program for another year after that. He has continued to receive various services ever since. And it’s all been worth it. Take a look.

I needed a tissue, but that’s just me.  


24 thoughts on “A Boy and His Voice

  1. Jacquie

    Proud? Rightly so!
    I pray Ben will one day say a thoughtful sentence, which doesn’t come from a TV show, but from somewhere within that amazing mind of his.
    Posts like this keep me hopeful, and dare I say expectant of great things to come.

  2. jess

    oh, honey .. pass the kleenex. he is an incredible young man. i adore his creativity, his vivid imagination, his obvious belief in himself and what he can make happen.

    thank you so much for sharing this today. i hope you’ll send the movie!

  3. Lex Savko

    Wow, this sounds fantastic! I’ve never seen The Valley of Gwangi, I’ll have to rent that sometime. So great to hear his voice and hear his imagination at work!

  4. AUNTastasia

    I as well am dabbing my eyes with a tissue. I’m so proud of Nigel—I don’t even know how to upload youtube videos and I have several on there! He has always had immense creativity, thanks to both you and Nigel for sharing this!

  5. Johanna

    That was so good – and I love the bit about the release being between few weeks or months, the major movies taking their time!
    I am totally with you in the team kleenex. I too have a son who did not speak much before 4 1/2…Communication is still challenging, but you and Nigel give us hope.

  6. Carrie N

    Okay, he sounds brilliant. And he’s obviously handsome. And he comes from a great family. So, can we have your phone number?

    On a serious note, I love your blog for the hope it gives me for our future.

  7. Kim

    Love this Tanya, and I just love that you’ve waited until he was ready to share his voice. He is a beautiful human being. I love this.

  8. Andi

    Thank-you! This gives me so much hope for my mostly non-verbal 4 year old grandson. It’s obvious how intelligent Nigel is. You must be very proud of him.

  9. Kenneth Lilly

    I was invited to stop over by one of your followers, Elizabeth, who writes A Moon, Worn as if It Had Been a Shell. She was offering me some encouragement on my journey with my nearly 3-year old son who struggles with speech.

    Autistic? Yes, we think so, but like so many other people we don’t really know what that means exactly, there are other factors involved as well, he did have a tumor removed, so there was brain trauma and seizures, so a lot goes into the mix.

    But anyway, I admire that your son got on YouTube and posted some video, it shows real strength of character. How proud you must be! I know I would be. It’s great! I’ll be tuning back in… 🙂


  10. rhemashope

    oh tanya, i don’t know how i missed this. i cannot tell you how watching nigel fills my heart with love and hope. he is beautiful. i love EVERY WORD. thank you for sharing this, thank you for sharing him with us.

  11. Tanya Savko Post author

    Everyone, thank you so much for your lovely comments. He has come so far and I can’t tell you how much I appreciate the fact that you are here to share his progress with me.

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