Sunday, July 13, 2008

On my bedside table

It's not all design and shoemaking books here, and not always cheery craft Emma either. A few months ago we discovered that our quirky son is on the Autism Spectrum. I haven't really written about this before, and am finding it difficult to put all the right words together.

Leo has been seeing a speech therapist for over a year, and, together with his occupational therapist, these fabulous women have noticed that his quirks all add up to textbook Autism Spectrum Disorder. He is in the process of being diagnosed, and all opinions thus far point to High Functioning Autism.

To me he is a regular kid, but whenever we see any of the specialists, or when I read about HFA, I am struck with the absolute truth of the matter; my son has Autism. It's not anything I want to hide, and I guess this blog is about all of me in some way, including the more contemplative Emma, who writes in her journal most nights.

This book is a bit overwhelming, particularly reading about challenges we are yet to face, as Leo is only three. However it has given me insight into how to bring out his best qualities, and knowing that we have discovered this early is also a plus.

Autism in its various forms is being diagnosed much more frequently now, 7 in 100 kids instead of the 1 in 100 from previous years. This is primarily due to increased awareness, and early detection and support is the key to ensuring that kids like Leo get all the help they can in their years before school.


pen said...

Indeed you are lucky for those fabulous women!
So lucky to be able to start now. I know quite a few people who just got the diagnosis at a late stage (late childhood etc) , which answered niggly questions that had haunted them for years but left them floundering as to what to do.
Not an easy row to hoe but I bet he is joy in all his quirks.
Good luck and piles of strength and energy to you.

meetmeatmikes said...

Just come and visit me whenever you like! We can eat delicious bisuits and I promise I'll make you an excellent cup of tea and Leo can play upstairs with the big boys and we can gossip.

You are a lovely mother of a beautiful boy. And we love you lots.


paula said...

just for the record, we absolutely reckon leo's a regular kid too.
and you can count on no special treatment from us, we'll niggle and argue and snatch and squeal with the thrill of his arrival no matter what.
well, actually i'll just make the apple pancakes and leave the rest to chaz and heidi...