We have people reach out to us quite often and ask us questions about our son being autistic so I figured we would post some blogs that might be of some help to another couple. Many people define themselves by their accomplishments so why is it that when your child is diagnosed on the spectrum everyone defines them by their deficits. Now we have to make the separation on what will best help our child and how to view that process. In order to help our child we had to know where his deficits were and make goals in closing those gaps but if we see our child as a list of broken things to fix, we will find yourself overwhelmed and miss who our child really is. There are so many amazing things about our son that we had to remind ourselves with every IEP meeting comes progress and not get wrapped up into how far behind normal kids he is.
In the beginning of the diagnosis, we grieved for a couple of years. When you are pregnant with a baby in your mind you have all expectations of what this baby’s personality will be like and what they will become someday. As the child grows and you receive an Autism diagnosis, you begin to realize that you have to throw all expectations out the window and grieve for the child you dreamed and hoped for and say good-bye to that expectation. If you don’t do this, you start to feel the disappointment in the child you do have. How can anyone be disappointed in such a beautiful creation that God gave you? Most professionals tell you that a diagnosis of this kind is harder on the parent(s) than the child, this is true! Our son, Hezekiah, lives a very happy life I assume not knowing that he is any different than any other child. When he smiles, you know what true innocence looks like. His smile lights up the room! What do you take away? To seek out the beauty of this amazing child God has entrusted us with. The beauty of having a child so unique, is as simple as that… he’s not like everyone else. Hallelujah! As Dr Seuss says “Why fit in, when you can stand out.” So our job at this point is to find his strengths and encourage those, and to find those weaknesses and figure out how to conquer them. Take joy in the small accomplishments, and enjoy his beautiful blue eyes and contagious smile.