Ever wondered what it's like for someone who cannot express themselves?
The Giving Voice Blogfest is your chance to express what it means for those people in the form of a poem, excerpt, flash fiction piece. Maximum 400 words in length.
How does your character feel about his situation? How will they cope with the speech problem? Maybe your story will include a Speech & Language Therapist transforming their lives.
Here's my entry:
Here comes Ethan in the van to pick us up. Just seeing him puts me in a bad mood. He’s never been nice to me. It’s not that I don’t like going to the center. It is the getting there that I don’t like.
I wheel out to the van as Elaine and Brian walk out. As usual, Ethan manhandles me onto the lift, pushing me around as if I’m a ragdoll. I feel as if I am losing balance and my arms go flying, a natural reflex to defend myself. I bumped Ethan as I was flailing around.
Before I know what’s happening, he slams my head down onto my lap. OUCH! I cried out in pain, which makes him even angrier. He finishes pushing my chair into place, continuing to yell at me.
When we finally get off the van, I feel as if I’m exploding from the inside out. I lose control of myself, yelling and throwing the arm and leg rests from my chair across the room. I can’t help it. I am tired of Ethan pushing me around!
I’m thankful to arrive at the center, with people who understand me. Most people either ignore me or talk to me as if I’m a child. It’s not that I can’t understand what others are saying, but I’m not able to put thoughts or feelings into words. I can relax here, knowing that Ethan won’t be around. Everyone at the center is always smiling and it makes me smile. I’m treated the same as everyone else.
After lunch, I start feeling a little edgy, knowing Ethan will be back soon. It will surely be unpleasant ride, especially after this morning. I’m scared of getting hurt again.
I notice that Elaine is talking to the staff, and they keep looking at me. I wonder if she is telling them about Ethan. Since she’s the only one living at my house who talks, she is my only hope.
The next morning before Ethan came to get us, one of the women from the office came over to talk to Elaine. When Ethan arrives, he is on his best behavior. It’s nice to have a peaceful morning for once.
That afternoon, after a good day at the center, a new woman picks us up. Ethan is gone…forever. What a relief!Working with individuals with developmental disabilities and/or autism, this story is sadly based on a true event. Unfortunately, these individuals are extremely vulnerable and sometimes victims of abuse. I wanted to use this opportunity to education others to the fact that even if a person doesn't speak, it doesn't mean they don't communicate. They have thoughts and feelings just as you and I do. Many times, they will show you what you want to know if you only take the time to pay attention.
Special Thanks to Madeleine at Scribble and Edit for hosting