Can you imagine having an eleven-year-old child that you thought was unable to communicate at all and then all of the sudden you learn that they can not only communicate through typing but that their words are quite eloquent? Amazing.
My good friend Heath shared a video on Facebook called Autistic Girl Expresses Unimaginable Intelligence about an eleven-year-old girl who was severely Austistic and completely unable to communicate with her family who one day suddenly ran to a computer and typed words on a keyboard. They were words that no one had specifically taught her.
Even with extensive therapy she had made very little progress throughout her life and everyone thought she was mentally handicapped–at possibly the developmental level of a six-year-old–up to that point. But, to everyone’s surprise, there was a whole and very intelligent person trapped inside her burdensome body.
I got teary-eyed watching her super-dedicated father choke up as he talked about finally being able to communicate with his daughter and how he has gone from seeing her as a disabled person to a feisty teenager.
She is now able to explain through typing that the reason Autistic people rock, and shout and make noises is because they are trying to block out all of the input that is bombarding them constantly. She said, “It’s a way for us to drown out all sensory input that overloads us all at once. We create output to block input.” What child hasn’t covered their ears and said “Blah,blah, blah, I’m not listening to you!” at some point when they wanted to block out something they didn’t want to hear? Most of us are just fortunate to not be assaulted with endless unwanted information 24-7.
What must it be like to have an entire vocabulary and language and viewpoint trapped inside of you and to be unable to share it with anyone for so long? And what an extraordinary relief it must be to finally release all of that pent-up self-expression that had been fighting to get out.
Carly Fleischmann is the name of the girl in the video. It’s a touching video and a miraculous story, check it out if you have a moment. She is doing so well now that she has a Twitter account, Facebook, and she even has written a book titled Carly’s Voice.
There are some kinds of miracles in this world that defy explanation. I am just glad that I occasionally get the chance to hear about them.