My son is autistic but he is remarkable

Autism is a neurological condition which means that those who have it process information differently.

Autism is a neurological condition which means that those who have it process information differently.

The day is over. The guests have left. The clean up has finished. The balloons are deflated and the food has finished. Another year has gone by and we have just finished celebrating our sons third birthday. The day was wonderful, filled with delicious food, laughter with those we love around us and photos for the album that we will treasure forever. I can breathe. The day went by with the odd hiccup but it was a success and most importantly our son enjoyed himself and was excited to see balloons and new toys. This may all sound familiar to any family but what you all don’t know is it has been one year since my son’s diagnosis.
The day of the diagnosis is imprinted in my mind. I left the clinic feeling numb. I had known it was coming as we had chosen for an early diagnosis and told the professionals we were ready to hear it. Ready to start the process because we knew early intervention would be the best step forward. My son has just turned 3 and the past year has been an incredible journey, one that I never imagined I would experience or gave much thought to when I was pregnant. Its a journey that has come with many challenges and happiness and has helped me and my family to grow, not only to realise what is important in life but also why it’s important to become more open-minded and accept our differences. It has given us an insight into something truly fascinating. Now I’m ready to open up about it because finally, I have come to realise that a change must come about in our community to help those who need it.

My son is Autistic but he is remarkable.

Autism is a neurological condition which means that those who have it process information differently. It affects the social aspects of a person in three main areas: Social communication, social imagination and social interaction. The condition may appear to present itself differently in each individual ranging from severe to mild. It’s important to understand that autism is not a disease, there is no cure or quick fix but more realistically there are ways through speech therapy and techniques that can adjust their life and make them more independent.  The more mild cases on the spectrum may lack social skills but present exceptional IQ levels. This being presentable in my son.
At 15 months he had learnt the alphabet and began to count. This gradually began to expand to him counting to 1000. He learnt all the shapes, colours, modes of transport, days of the week, months of the year, knew the difference between consonants and vowels and can do basic addition. He became fascinated with the solar system and could name the planets in order. He knew the name of many animals but could group them to those that belonged in the safari, jungle or farm. He began to read and his vocab expanded quickly making him able to spell any word he imprinted his mind on. One day he stumbled across the Russian alphabet on a YouTube video and went on to learn it all and words associated with it. He could do puzzles and shape sorters and had a remarkable memory of what order certain things had to be.
He is very verbal and can say long sentences and sing nursery rhymes but has a delay in social communication and functional language. But he is a happy and healthy child and that is what is most important. In his own quirky way, he brings so much joy to those around him and he gives the best hugs. From the endless silly things he says that make us laugh at the challenging moments that come with any child. He is beautiful.
So why am I sharing all of this? Many people will question why I have decided to open up about this subject. It has not been easy to come to this decision but now I am not afraid of the consequences. There are so many misconceptions surrounding autism. There is someone out there who needs to read this. Someone out there who believes their child is a little different but doesn’t know how to address it. Someone out there who needs support. It’s time to make a change. No shame. No regrets. No judgement. I am a mother of an autistic child and its time to raise awareness about this subject. This starts in our community.

Every human being is different. No one is perfect. We all have our flaws.

Some of us who are neurotypical still struggle with day to day life and social situations. We may prefer to be in a quiet environment or are interested in certain aspects of life that others are not. This is what makes us unique. Autistic people are very similar but they have a different way of seeing the world and processing information and there is so much that we can learn from them. Many of them struggle with day to day aspects of life or have a delayed development in some areas yet, beneath all that is a human being who deserves respect, equal opportunities and support to achieve their goals and dreams in life.



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