Our family has been learning sign language. We're just doing a little here and there as our schedule allows, but we've really been trying to practice what we're learning. A good time to do that has been at dinner, and Caleb is soaking it all up like a sponge. The other night, he randomly signed "No running inside" without any prompting. We hadn't done those signs in WEEKS, and he remembered it! (To be honest, I'd forgotten the sign for running!)
Abby passed her hearing test and we don't have any concerns about hearing loss, but it is pretty difficult to talk with a trach. We plan to use sign language with her so that she will be able to learn it and communicate with us. Eventually, we probably won't need to use too much to talk to her, and will just interpret what she is signing to us. But she's gotta learn somehow!
I've always thought sign language was beautiful and have learned a little over the years, but most of it is song lyrics I've picked up at church...not quite so useful in every day communication! Being at RMH and getting to know a little girl who uses sign language for communication purposes really motivated us to learn it--and got Caleb very interested.
Be sure to ask Caleb to show you his name sign the next time you see him. It's pretty cool! (He made it up himself, in case there was any question!) :)