Thursday, April 29, 2010

Autism Awareness Month Almost Over

As a friend of mine who also has an autistic child says,"It is always Autism Awareness Month at our house!" I think I didn't blog last year because we just received the official diagnosis for our son that he had Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). We really didn't know what that was but have since been caught up to speed over the last year.
My son, a delightful 4 and a half year old now, began ABA therapy (Applied Behavior Analysis) from home last April just in time to "celebrate" this month. I can't say I was celebrating his difference from all his peers, but we were trying to figure out what this means for him in the long run. Truth is we hear a lot of things of what this will mean, but only time will tell. He progresses in life skills and talking every day. To those looking on the outside it is slow, but to us what a world of difference!
This time last year he couldn't: dress himself, talk in sentences, make eye contact 95% of the time, pee in a toilet, tolerate transitions, or do any sustained play with normal toys. Now, I can't say he's mastered all of this, but he can dress himself with very little assistance, he talks in some sentences and answer some questions now, eye contact has improved I'd say 50% or more of the time you can get him to look at you when speaking to him, he does pee in the toilet some of the time, he can tolerate transitions more so, and he does want to play with toys some of the time. It is a gradual journey. He is beginning to notice people more also and peers which is amazing to watch. Oh, he still treats people a lot of the time like objects, but he has moments the fog clears and he wants to play with others. I love that!
We have a lot of hope for our little guy engaging further and further with this world. I think I will always celebrate or mark this month for autism as it has certainly made it's mark on us.