Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Somewhere Over The Rainbow Lies an Autism Diagnosis ( I Don't Think We're In Kansas Anymore!)

This is Part 1.. the post was too long, so I split it... Will post the rest tomorrow evening...

It was 2 a.m and everyone was sleeping. I was staring at the letter, willing it to disappear. I wished like hell that I could go back in time, to yesterday. Yesterday, when I didn't know what I now knew. I wanted to go back before the appointment. before my husband and I walked into that building with the obnoxiously bright blue carpet and rainbow- muraled walls and had our world shattered, yet again.

Eight hours before, we had entered the glass building approaching the double doors of the suite, checked in with the cheery young receptionist and taken a seat in the waiting room until our name was called. I looked at my tow-headed five year old as she played with the office blocks. Surely, there was nothing wrong with her, right? I had initiated this; I had to be sure.

I took a deep breath and shifted uncomfortably in the hard chair. I imagined I could hear the ticking from the clock on the wall. It was hard to wait. My husband squeezed my hand encouragingly. Was he as scared about this appointment as I was?.

When our name was called, we followed another cheery young assistant in techicolor-scrubs to a small room, filled with toys. An older woman entered and introduced herself as the doctor. I cannot remember what she looked like...at this point it doesn't matter. She asked us a lot of questions: did JBean play well with others? Did she have friends? Did she line things up? When did she walk? Talk? Eat? Did she sleep well? The questions continued, peppering me with the accusations that went unspoken. Could she read? Write? Count? Could she skip? What about throwing a ball? Why didn't you get intervention sooner? ...because we didn't know. Not really. Besides, doesn't autism only strike once per family? That's fair, right?

More tomorrow...

Here is part 2 in case you googled and only found this post, it continues the story

T, who found this a very hard post to write, but if it helps just one person, it was worth it

3 sent chocolate:

Debbie Yost said...

Yeah that seems fair to me, too, but unfortunately it's not how it is sometimes. I read a blog that has 3 boys and all 3 boys have autism.

I'm so sorry your daughter is stuggling with it, too. We don't have autism in our house, but I know many families that deal with it. **Hugs**

missbanshee said...

**hugs** All the experience I have with situations like this is on the other side - the question asker, not the answer giver. My heart hurt every time, and I hated asking a checklist about someone's sweet child when it's so obvious that every case is different. I don't know what my point is here, but I hear you, I feel you. **hugs**

T. said...

Debbie Yost: I understand that.. and yes, all THREE of my children have autism, as well, in varying degrees. The middle and youngest have a diagnosis. My oldest is not diagnosed, but absolutely has Aspergers. Such is life. Thanks for the hugs and the visit!

missbanshee: I know intellectually that the doctor interviewing us was doing her job. She wasn't really unkind, as much as just biased. She let her own views guide the way she responded to us. And of course, we know that if you have seen one child with autism, you have seen ONE child with autism. Thank you for the hugs, they mean a lot.

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