Good day, friends and family. I appreciate you reading my last blog post in honor of National Stuttering Awareness Week. It means a lot to me. I couldn’t close out the week without sharing one last thing with all of you in regards to it.
This week I was looking through blogs with the hagtag stutterering, underneath it I came across a beautiful piece by blogger Reading For Sanity Mom . This piece was about her and her four year old son, who is struggling with a speech impediment. According to my parents, age four is when I first started stuttering. As I read, I learned this mother was struggling just seeing her child disfluent. Reading that piece made me reflect on my own parents. I know my life has been a challenge living with a stutter, but surely it must have been challenging for my folks as well seeing me struggle with it. I can’t read their minds, but to this day I’m sure they think in their heads, I wish I could help him.
Feeling moved by the story, I left a comment saying just that, and that I wish I had the courage of this little boy when I was his age, to not be afraid to speak to anyone. Within a few minutes, the mother thanked me for my words, and asked me what it was like for me growing up with a stutter.
I replied, “Growing up I wasn’t bullied in school. With the exception of a few remarks and giggles here and there by the occasional ignorant person, nobody bullied me. Not a hand was raised against me. Prayer, patience, and perseverance to this day play a factor in me working through my speech. As I said, I still stutter, and I don’t know how much longer I will stutter, but I refuse to let it define me and drag me down.”
I believe that was the first time I put those three P words together- Prayer, Patience, Perseverance. Reflecting on my journey as a speaker and human being, these combined words have help shaped me. I am happy to share these words with you so you too may grow into a better speaker.
Prayer If there is one being in existence who will listen to what you say no matter how long you take, it is the Most High. When I’m talking to God in private my stutter is almost non existent. Why is that? Perhaps maybe because God knows me so well. Even before I came into the world He knew what type of person I would be. For as long as I can remember, I have asked Him to touch my lips; tongue; diaphragm; and every other body part that enables speaking. Through Him, I speak better.
Patience As much as we would like it to, our stutter is not going to disappear overnight. Once, when I was younger, I prayed that it would, only to be disappointed the next morning. And it is true that there are famous people who have stuttered, but some of them took years to overcome it. We can’t compare ourselves to others. If we do this we end up only hurting ourselves. Every person is different. You are overcoming your speech on your own timeclock in your own way. Don’t rush yourself.
Diving further into patience, if you have to take your time as you speak to avoid stuttering, then go that route. Not all of us can spit out words like hip hop artists or auctioneers. If somebody wants to press you to speed it up or “just say it already”, then clearly they are an inpatient person and not worth speaking to.
Perseverance You must MUST keep pressing on! If you don’t have anybody to push you to do better, push yourself. You don’t have to do as I do, but my mentality is to apply myself three times as hard as anybody else. One of my methods to bettering my speech is talking to myself in the mirror. Why, because I’m dashing as all get up. 😄 Just kidding. Seeing my reflection gives me the chance to see myself speak. I learn to keep my tongue in my mouth, eyes open, head straight up, throat untensed, and to breathe when I need to. Whatever helps you become a better speaker, go for it.
As I like to say, “I have a stutter. Accept me or don’t.” Thank for your support, and God Bless.