When autism touched me, I was new to motherhood, full of the promise and hope that a new baby brings. My new baby was quirky and I thought she was awesome. She really loved playing with toys, it was a concern, but I eagerly listened to family and friends say, “What an easy baby! You are so lucky!” When we received the diagnosis of autism at 2 1/2 years old, I was crushed. You know the feeling. You know the thoughts that race through your head at the speed of light.
What will happen to my child’s future? Will my child be ok? Will my child be able to make friends? How will my child communicate? How can I help? Will my child talk? How can I take care of my child? Where do I begin? The list of unanswered questions is tremendous. In time, you will find your balance. Eventually you will realize that you are your child’s best advocate. You know your child’s wants, what your child means, what upsets your child, what makes your child smile. You will choose carefully. You will make the decisions that are right for YOUR CHILD.
There is laughter, joy, surprise, heartache and roadblocks ahead. The thirst for knowledge is consuming and will inspire reading a lot. You will be surprised at how many people will support you and your child, and how little is known about autism. You will get tired and you will come back stronger. We’ve all had those moments. Remember that you are not alone. There are many families just like yours, my family is one of them.