To a certain extent I understand the sense of loss and hopelessness that many people say they’ve experienced upon hearing their child has a disability. But I can’t claim to have really ever felt those things myself.
Both my husband and I knew that autism was the probable diagnosis whenI walked in to the developmental ped’s office that day. When he finally uttered the word ‘autism’ I couldn’t help but smile. Finally we had the diagnosis which allowed us to get services and start doing something to help him. The doctor gave me a funny look and said, “I don’t think you understand. This is serious, there is no cure, it’s lifelong…..” I told him I did understand and that I was just glad to finally have the diagnosis in writing. Still, I’m pretty sure he thought I was either ignorant or nuts.
The representative from early intervention had been at the appointment with me and as we walked out she told me she’d never seen anyone take a diagosis so well. I had to explain that the way I saw it, autism was just part of who my son was and without it, he wouldn’t be the same boy that I knew and loved.
Eight years later, I still feel that way. There are plenty of times I wish things (communication, sensory input, etc.) were easier for Adrian, but I don’t ever wish for the autism to just magically leave….. he wouldn’t be Adrian without it. And, in case you haven’t already guessed, I adore Adrian. Today I’m extremely thankful I get to be his mom.