Attending the 2017 NSA Conference in Texas

ConferenceA workshop at the 2017 NSA Conference Kim Block attended the 2017 National Stuttering Association Conference in Dallas, Texas. Her husband David and their two children also attended. One of the reasons she was there was to promote her new children's book about stuttering, Adventures of a Stuttering Superhero. Kim will be the keynote speaker at the Canadian Stuttering Association conference in October. 

My husband and I were in the elevator with our two children going down to the workshop floor. We were with four other people, all wearing badges. They had the "first timers" label on theirs. They looked exhausted and were talking about how they weren’t expecting to be so tired. My husband pipes up, “Yeah at my first conference someone told me that you sleep 360 days a year, but for the next 5 days, you won’t”. The young adult smiles and said, “I wish someone warned me. We are all staying up so late and then up so early for workshops”. 

That’s how it is at the conference. You bump into people in the lobby, in the elevator, all wearing NSA badges. You know you are with your community, there is no fear about stuttering. You just talk. You are up late in the bar of the hotel, or out at the pool talking. Up early eager to get to the next workshop, not wanting to miss a thing. For those of you who haven’t attended before, rest up, because when you are there you will not be getting much sleep. It’s a good tired. It’s an amazing tired. 

The workshops this year were very interesting, for parents, adults and PWS’s. Some classics were still there, but a lot of various kinds of workshops. We have a fabulous time, and I learnt a lot. There is a lot of exciting research going on, and the approach that SLP’s are taking are changing. Attending a stuttering conference, even after 18 years of being involved in the community, still changes me. I never leave unaffected. The stuttering community is a fine wine, just getting better as we move along. More education, more awareness, and more people feeling passionate to advocate. 

Thank you NSA, see you next year!

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