I was helping my daughter with her homework the other day. And I was so happy and proud to see her writing, counting, sounding out words and….well…let’s go back about 4 years so you can understand.
Four years ago my daughter was 3 years old and she had a vocabulary of about 20-30 words, she was barely writing, not answering questions like “what is your name”, and when playing she didn’t interact with other children. My daughter was diagnosed with autism at the age of 3, and I had no clue as to what I needed to or should do next. Initially, I did get caught up in what I wanted for her because autism was not on my agenda. But I soon adopted the motto “it’s not about you” when it came to her. It’s not about me and my parental ego.
- But she’ll have to see a therapist….it’s not about you
- But we may not be able to go everywhere everyone else goes due to sensory issues now….it’s not about you
- But she can’t be in a regular class in school right now….it’s not about you
- But this isn’t what I wanted for her….it’s not about you
My daughter could care less about the particular class she’s in or seeing a therapist, that’s just my parental ego. What will benefit her most? That’s the question, and whatever the answer is…that’s what I need to be doing. Autism isn’t the end of the story, it’s a condition that we must learn as it pertains to the individual and make the proper adjustments in our lives. It affects the nervous system, which allows us to perceive/comprehend/and respond to the world around us. So autistic persons just perceive/comprehend/and respond differently…that’s it.
Temple Grandin said it best (and if you haven’t seen Temple Grandin’s HBO movie you should) by saying she sees the world in pictures. That’s not to say she’s not able to see the world, and comprehend what’s around her…she just processes it differently.
NOW let’s fast forward 4 years to me watching my daughter do her homework the other day. She’s writing very well, she’s counting & writing numbers, she’s telling me objects that begin with the letter she’s writing…..now can you see why I’m a happy and proud mom J As long as there’s no regression, you’re moving forward and that’s progress!