First, she hit a personal care milestone. I do not want to go into what it is, to save her future embarrassment, but I was a proud parent, and my fiancee was excited and proud, as well. It was something that either she learned on her own, or her occupational therapy led to it.
The second bit of news can be more public. Until recently, my daughter had three speaking volumes: shouting, talking loudly, and whispering. I tried telling her, "lower your voice", and she did! I asked her if somebody taught her that, and she said, "Mrs. Doyle." That's her speech therapist at school.
These two milestones came at a time when I've been a bit down about not being able to reason with my child the way other parents can. And before anyone chimes in with, "I can't reason with my neurotypical child," yes, you can--they at least understand you, even if they don't accept your logic, advice, or simple word.
She did hit a milestone last week that I did not mention: she started using people's names in response to "hello" or "hi". So instead of answering, "Hi, Caitlin!" when people greet her, she now answers with, for example, "Hi Daddy!" This milestone gives me hope for a meaningful conversation with more time and therapy.