Thursday, August 7, 2014

100 Days of Writing: Day Two -- Journey towards Autism

I spent about an hour yesterday meeting with D12's teachers and any staff that will interact with him this year and telling them about his possible autism.

As I was walking down the hall to the meeting I was completely overwhelmed with the realization that I am not prepared to deal with this.

Which is a little silly to say because I am dealing with it.  I have been dealing with it for 12 years, even if the last year was the only year I knew that I might be dealing with it.

On September 11 D12 will finally go through testing at the Marcus Autism Center in Atlanta.   One year after his teacher requested a meeting with me to discuss her concerns.

I think part of the reason I haven't blogged about this is because I am ashamed a teacher had to point this out to me.  In fifth grade.

If he falls on the autism spectrum it will be at the very high end of the spectrum -- high functioning autism.

We had our pretest earlier this week and the doctor we met with said there is no reason D12 can't do anything with his life that he wants to do, they will just give him the tools to do what he wants to do, and to live a full life.

He has numerous social issues -- to many to go into in one post.  He doesn't connect with other kids, he doesn't have friends.

This is heartbreaking to watch and I am helpless.

Helpless but very filled with hope and so happy to be so close to his testing, getting some answers and getting some direction and help from professionals.

There's no doubt this year of waiting and wondering and trying to cope on my own has been tougher on me then it has been on D12.

He is currently a patient in the outpatient program of the feeding dept. at Marcus (more on this later).  We have been up there once a week since May and this past Tuesday, the day we did our pretest in the development department, was the first day he and I had a conversation about what autism is and what it means if he falls on the spectrum.

When I see him at school alone and talking to himself while the other kids are interacting and connecting it absolutely breaks my heart and doesn't seem to bother him a bit.

Today he started 6th grade.  His teacher graduated last spring with a double major in education and special education.  He is in a small private school in a small classroom.  He is probably in the best place he can be right now with people that will do their best for him.  He'll be working with a learning specialist every day and after September 11, once we have a diagnosis for him, we'll get a plan in place with professionals in our area. His teachers are looking forward to getting the diagnosis and working with me and whoever they need to work with to help D12 be successful at school academically and socially.

I couldn't ask for a better situation.  It's still hard.  It still feels helpless.  I don't know what to do even though I seem to be doing it.

1 comment:

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

I really hope this year brings encouragement to both of you. I know what you mean about the shame, I had a son repeat 5th grade after learning so late in the game about his learning disabilities. It sounds like you have so much in place for better success.