Well, actually, I'm so thrilled to have power back on, I'm not sleepy now.. haha !
So I'll touch on this a bit, and we can continue more over the next couple days...
My first and only grandson was dx'd with HFA (high functioning autism) in Feb. on his third B'day. Needless to say, we were (initially) devastated. Up 'til then, I had heard only the usual "horror stories" and knew only very little about the autism spectrum.. only what I had heard on the news or read in a few articles. We had no idea what to expect.
To spare you all the lengthy details, and myself from having to retype it all again, I'll include a link to my blog, and you can take your time reading through everything as it all developed.. I haven't written anything more since May/June or so, as it's been a busy summer... hope to begin writing again this fall.
I want to offer you encouragement, however.... since his diagnosis in Feb, Gavin has made HUGE strides !!!! It is AMAZING how far he has come in just a few short months! From being nearly non-verbal and spinning the wheels on his toy cars, no eye contact... etc., etc, etc... he now is laughing, verbally COMMUNICATING (not just echolalia, but making his wants/needs known) in real SENTENCES, is nearly fully potty trained, and has recently begun to not just TOLERATE (which he never even did before) having children around him, but actually is now beginning to interact with them, sharing his toys, and the other day even HELD HANDS with a little friend.... unthinkable and unimaginable only a month or two ago !
I could go on for hours.. truly... at the changes we have seen this summer. He started special ed preschool in April, then went to Summer Camp for Autism locally for a week (AWESOME!) in July, and just started back in sp. ed preschool last week. His teacher is amazed at the progress he has made and says he is like a totally different child.
Believe me when I say I know the roller coaster of emotions one experiences when receiving the diagnosis. And yet now, I can also totally relate to Palemoon's post as well.
My daughter and I have spent innumerable hours online researching everything we could on autism, and have connected with a HUGE autism community... parents of children on the spectrum... every level of the spectrum. There is a wonderful autism Twitter community.. they have been a wealth of information and support. There is an awesome Facebook community as well... I have all kinds of links to just about anything you might want or need. From every position/perspective on this topic. And there are MANY.
We, too, have chosen to go with the biomedical approach. We unfortunately do not have any DAN doctors anywhere near us, but are utilizing everything we have available to us along those lines.
Please feel free to pm me at any time of you choose. I'll do my very best to help out in any way possible, or direct you to those I feel can do so. There is so MUCH to learn, and we continue to learn more every day.
Be encouraged. As Palemoon stated so very well, ..." a disability like deafness, in that we don't consider ourselves to be "sick" and in need of "correcting," or "curing," instead we need help to live in our communities fully and communicate with neurotypical people..."
I am now able to fully agree.. no longer see it as the unknown monster in the dark.
One more suggestion for you.. get that sweet child an iPad if at all possible !!! There are sooooooo many WONDERFUL apps out there for autistic kiddos, and they are INVALUABLE teaching tools.
SO MUCH of Gavin's progress has come from his iPad. I can guide you in choosing the most helpful apps as well.
OK.. I could go on and on... will wait to hear back from you and go from there.
I was a wreck when we first knew for sure about Gavin..... and now.... wow ! It has been such an amazing, fascinating, and WONDERFUL journey! :heartbeat