It’s been a REALLY long year. Not just for the entire world in 2020, but for our family as well.
Although our family is getting along well financially compared to others who are suffering during the pandemic, there is one thing we didn’t seem coming…
Yes, you have autism. It’s hard to explain, but you’ve had it since birth.
However, we didn’t start seeing the signs until you reached two years old. Then things started to change.
From two years old till now you haven’t been developing the same as your peers. And honestly…
I kind of feel like that’s my fault. I kept telling myself to be patient with your development and that “it’s only a phase” or “you will catch up eventually…”
But all I was really doing was not seeing the signs of autism you were showing me.
I hope you can forgive me for that.
I never thought my child could have autism. I took the “it couldn’t be my kid” mentality.
Plus, even though I studied psychological disorders in college, I didn’t major in child developmental disorders so I was not familiar with all the signs of autism.
I wish doctors would have spoke up sooner to express their concern.
But everything happens in time and what matters now is that you are starting to get the help you need to progress forward.
If my not recognizing your autism prevented you from not receiving help earlier, I’m sorry. I take full responsibility for that.
It has not been easy for me navigating how to…
-Communicate with you better
-Meeting your sensory needs
-Help you understand simple life skills that don’t come naturally for you
-Get you therapy help like speech and occupational therapy
I think I am improving though. Your daddy and I have taken the year to start communicating with you in sign language.
Although you don’t repeat the signs, it’s instead helping you speak. It’s incredible!
Along with learning and using sign language, I also have created an at-home preschool program filled with ways to help your sensory issues.
I’ve included more hands-on activities like sensory bins, cooking classes, sensory toys, heavy work activities, and more.
I’ve seen such dramatic improvement in communication and behavior! You have also started preschool and are receiving speech and occupational therapy.
Now that you’ve started receiving help for autism, you’re doing a lot better.
You are an amazing, observant person who learns very quickly. I have no doubts you will continue to do well and excel further.
Just to show you how much you’re growing, here’s a look at all the amazing things you’ve done this year!
-You say a new word every day
-You memorize full scenes of your favorite Disney movies with actions and words
-You can request items you want like “milk”
-You can say full sentences with prompting
-You’re starting to point to items you want and pictures in books
-You’re gaining and learning patience
-You say please and thank you even at preschool
-You’re starting to like coloring, playdough, and other craft activities
-You can jump, spin, run, and crash into things (that’s usually your favorite part)
-You are opening up to trying foods with different tastes and textures
-You will wear clothes at home for longer periods of time
-You use the bathroom, but still need reminding to go
-You’re able to calm yourself before becoming too overwhelmed and puking
-You love to snuggle, hug, and kiss mom and dad
-You’re learning to share toys with your little brother
-Sometimes I catch you and your brother hugging when you think I’m not looking
You continue to grow each day and I feel over the next year things will only improve further. While I could continue to list more things, these are the biggest developments you’ve made at 3 years old.
Here’s to 4 years old and all the developments you’ll make along the way!
I LOVE YOU!