My name is Cathy, I am a mom of an awesome 4 and half year old boy, named Logan. Logan was diagnosed over a year ago with Autism. We realized when he was about 2 and half, his speech was not increasing. But, he was sick most of the time with ear infections and sore throats from age 6 months until 2 and half years, so we assumed that he was behind due to all his sickness. All his other milestones were normal until then. When I asked my friends they told me don’t worry, he is a boy, boys are late with talking. When preschool came I really noticed how far he was behind and when I saw how he was at preschool he seemed so different then his peers and so different to how he was at home. We questioned a little could it be Autism? But when we looked it up, Logan didn’t seem to have all the classic “symptoms”.
But at school he was quiet, focused only on trains and/or cars and not socially aware of anyone in the room and very little eye contact. At home he played with many things, and gave us eye contact and at that time had very little symptoms of a child with Autism other than behind in his speech. Also Logan is very affectionate with hugs and kisses and is very easy going which made us think he was not (from what we knew). As months passed more symptoms appeared, such as hand flapping, this is a known trait of Autism. Other symptoms, eye contact decreased, also his anxiety had increased but this can be good as he was more socially aware what is going around him.
We decided to get him privately tested him, as the wait list I was told were over a year and half in the city we live in and we knew how important early diagnosis was. Shortly after diagnosis we began therapy. Therapy for us now consists of 4 sessions a week at 2 hours each time, plus he has speech therapy and occupational therapy. Also it is common to have even more therapy hours, but along with his preschool, gymnastics and swimming and sister’s activities it makes for a very busy week as it is!
A little more about Logan he is very sweet, easy going, loves to cuddle and he loves to give kisses. He really has no behaviours except some anxiety when I leave him at school. He does still like to flap his hands or jump when he gets excited, just think when you get excited you like to scream, shout out in excitement or tell someone about your news; well this is his way of getting that energy out without using words.
Just like other kids, he loves to play in sand and dirt, he loves trains, cars, jumping on the trampoline, running around outside, playing with his sister, playing with friends and also enjoys his Ipad and it’s really amazing what he can do on it!
I think if anything in our house it is just a little quieter than yours maybe to comparison to another 4 year old. I just wanted to share a little of his story as most people have different ideas of what Autism is, but the spectrum of Autism is so huge and not one is the same. Before Autism came into our lives, I had no idea as well how different each child with Autism is, so I hope to make you a bit more aware.
We now have had Logan in therapy for over a year, and the changes are amazing. His language has increased; he seeks social engagement, loves to play with other kids, great eye contact and has mastered some fine motor activities too! He now is in activities like gymnastics and swimming without any extra help, we could not be any prouder! He still has a ways to go, but it is wonderful how far he has come. We see huge potential in our little guy and feel the sky is the limit.
Autism is increasing more and more, The CDC (The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has just released that Autism is 1 in 68 kids now. Please become more aware about Autism, as most likely if your child does not have it, someone you know does.
If you ever have a question about Autism, talk to the parent, most parents want to chat with you about their child and explain to you what Autism is and how their child is. We would rather you ask.
Thank you for reading this and learning a little about my son and learning a little about Autism in our family. But please remember when you have met one person with Autism, you have only met ONE person with Autism. Please take time and teach your children to include and accept, as that is where change begins