I saw the signs.
Yes I saw the signs from the time my child could sit up. He didn’t turn his head when you called his name and I know he could hear. He mostly played with toys like other babies but there were times where he would fixate on things that would spin, so I bought him the Playskool gear board that had spinning gears 🙂 He loved it! Yes I saw the signs. I knew it wasn’t a good sign when I picked him up while he was focused, so he didn’t hear my warning, and he flapped his arms out and threw his head back and started to scream. I knew. But you know what made me forget or ignore it for a while? My Little Man saying “MaMa” for the first time. Him burrowing into me while wrapped in a blankie when he was tired. The smell of Little Man after a bath mmmmmm. Nope Nothing was wrong with my perfect Little Man. How can you label that?! I struggled with the label of Autism I was on the outside looking in and fighting a battle with this label that I didn’t want anywhere near my son. I saw Autism the way the world did and still does and I didn’t like it. I didn’t want people to look at my son like that. To have teachers treat him differently and whisper behind their hands and say he’s Autistic like its a curse word. Yes I saw the signs no I didn’t accept them. I was in denial. I saw the way he freaked out when walking by an automatic hand dryer he covered his ears and screamed. I saw the way he almost threw up while watching some one else eat jello or even if you just wiggled it in front of him. I noticed that if you gave him 3 instructions he could only follow the 1st one. But I also noticed that he had empathy if someone was hurt he would rush to get ice or tell a teacher. That he would help or share whenever he could, somethings he just wasn’t willing to part with. When he would cuddle in my lap for evening story time. Yes I still struggled I was still in denial and no one could make me get a diagnosis not even my husband…. trust me they tried. Was I ready yet when he hit kindergarten??? Nope. 1st Grade??? Nope but I will admit he is hyper and impulsive I will try a diet change. Well the diet change didn’t work I had to admit defeat and put him on meds and I want the school to do a full psych ed evaluation…….did I just ask that???!!!! Yes I did. The schools policy is they can’t help the child unless they are 2 years behind unless they have a disability. Well my son needed help he is at basic or below basic in every subject and I want him to catch up so I put Little Man on the meds and he was finally tested in 2nd grade. Do I still hate the label yes I hate the way the outside world perceives Autism. But no it’s not an ugly label to me anymore. It’s my son.