A Love Letter to My Stutter

Valentine’s Day has always been one of my favorite holidays. Growing up, I would count down the days with growing anticipation and awe. With great care, I selected and prepared the perfect Valentine to distribute during my class party. Of course, the cards were carefully folded and pristine, and the candy selection was flawless. I was proud of my Valentine. I wanted to show my appreciation for my classmates. However, I often forgot about showing my love for my oldest friend. The one near and dear that lived deep inside…. My stutter.

During Valentine celebrations, my stutter would often stop in to say hello in honor of the busy holiday. I often mention my stutter becoming more apparent in times of stress and uncertainty, but my stutter also would appear in times of over-excitement. I would forget to take a breath and pace myself in my endeavors leading me to feel overwhelmed causing me to stumble. When this happened, I would feel angry and isolated leaving me to wonder why things “always go wrong” for me. I would hand my stutter a tattered Valentine hoping it would persuade the party crasher to take her leave.

This, of course, was no solution at all. And, really, no solution was needed. Your stutter’s value is not equated to the crumpled-up Valentine. It is an integral component of your character. I know in my day to day I lose sight of this, and I feel angry when my stutter sneaks up on me in inopportune times. But I do not always have to push her away and lock her up with all my might. As a stutterer, I am given the perspective and opportunity to walk through life with a different outlook. I know she is part of me and despite her uncertainty, she has taught me a lot about how to navigate life and its ever-present and unexpected challenges. With my stutter by my side, I am unstoppable, because I know what I need to do, and I focus on getting it done. Together, we spread love to all people.

This Valentine’s Day, I am making the choice to write a special note of love and appreciation, making sure to dot my i’s with a heart. To my Stutter! Love, Ava…

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Delia is back!

This time the smart-witted fashionista from San Francisco has created an activity book. Doodling  with Delia is filled with games, puzzles, and fun designs to color.

As a stutterer Delia knows a calm mind increases fluency. She’s learned that doodling and coloring have a soothing effect on our emotions. It’s time to relax and enjoy—so grab your favorite colored pencils and let’s get started doodling with Delia!