I hope that my last post on hearing the word Autism was helpful to all that read it. Also thank you to all that shared my story. I really think that these diary entries are helpful to everyone. Being my sweet boy Ian’s mom is the best thing in the world and I want people to understand Autism more,because this is seriously a crazy amazing journey we are going on with Ian.
Today, is my Diary of an Autism Mom entry #2. I want to talk about a Autism Diagnosis. What is is? My husband and I’s feelings through it all? and how it has helped out our Ian boy.
During those couple of months after our appointment with the pediatrician were extremely tiring. I remember crying myself to sleep too many nights to count. We spent hours reading articles and taking online diagnosis tests for Ian. We were constantly watching him to catch any other red flags that would help us personally diagnosis him. We weren’t doctors but thought it would help us and comfort us in some way.
I remember one really hard speech therapy session with Ian, for me not Ian. It was right after the pediatrician had told us she thought Ian might have Autism. We had started with one speech therapist, and we went to her for a couple of months. She was super sweet but she just wasn’t getting the results we needed for Ian. She knew she needed to find someone who had less on their case load to help Ian. She introduced us to Keri. She was a different speech therapist that worked in the office. She had worked with other children with very delayed speech. Keri was super nice, and so excited to start working with Ian. When she was asking questions about Ian I started crying. Then I told them about our doctors visit. Ian’s first speech therapist said that she could see signs of Autism, but had never said anything to me. They were both so kind to me and comforting. They began helping me find a place to get Ian a diagnosis.
We called a place in Seattle that was high on the recommendation list. Their waiting list would put us months, or at least a year down the road to receive a diagnosis. The speech therapist were able to find a place in Spokane, WA for us. The waiting list was much shorter. We called, and got an appointment for a couple of months out. It was still so far away, but they said that if they had any cancellations they would call us. Sure enough about a week later they called and got us in just after the 4th of July. My husband I were so excited, and knew our prayers were answered. To me it felt like this was suppose to happen all along.
They mailed us a stack of papers to fill out, and wanted all records from doctors and therapist as well. We sent those off. Then when that day came we drove to Spokane with both of our children to meet with Dr. Guzzardo a Pediatric Neurophycologist . We spent about 1 to 2 hours with her in her office. She played with Ian, asked us lots of questions about Ian and she observed Ian as well. She wrote down lots of notes while we were there. She was super kind ,but super serious at the same time during our appointment. She could tell we were super overwhelmed and needed answers. At the end of the appointment she told us that Ian has classic severe Autism, but the only reason for that is because of his lack of communication. If and hopefully someday Ian would talk and communicate his needs, he could be high functioning.
It was not a shock, but was at the same time to hear Classic Severer Autism from Dr. Guzzardo. Once we got in the car both my husband and I broke down in tears. A lot of the tears were because of happiness that we had answers. Most of them were sad. We hated that our son had to be given this challenge in life, but we were so blessed that he was sent to us. That we were blessed to have this wonderful and beautiful child in our home, and family. With this diagnosis we could help Ian. We could get the therapist he needed to help him be successful in life.
To this day I get quite a few people ask me how did you know that your Ian had Autism, and what signs did you notice were red flags? I have given a lot of thought to these questions. The internet is full of great resources, but also some very false information. As much as I have spent time researching on the internet to find out how to help my child, it’s not the best resource. Nothing that is crucial for parents embarking on this journey of Autism can truly be provided by going online. I think that I would tell someone now that asks me these questions, to someone who thinks their child has Autism is : ” The emotions you go through as a parent through the journey of Autism are completely normal. The rest of the information to help your child will come. The people to talk to and the kind the therapy that will be the best for your child to be success will come as time progresses.
Things have just happened for some amazing reason for us with Ian. We don’t know why our sweet boy has Autism, but we do know we love him with all our hearts. We know he was given to us to love, care for, and in return we have been given so many blessings and insights of why we are here on this earth. Who we are, and the importance of this life on earth. Autism is a blessing!
Next time I would like to talk about different trials we go through with our Ian boy, and my own jealousy as a mom with a child with Autism. Stay tuned!
Resources: Savings Guide For People with Disabiliites