I’ve debated for a while now on whether to talk about this on my blog just yet.
I reached out to a few friends and opened up about it, told family, entrusted those who I thought would be supportive of us no matter what. And, since my Instagram and Facebook posts have kind of come across as a bit down-trodden the last few days, I thought maybe it was time to talk about what’s going on.
Our pediatrician and child psychologist believe that Noah may have Aspergers.
For those who don’t know what that is, it’s a form of high-functioning Autism.
I hesitated to share this because we still don’t have an official diagnoses. But, because a) this is my blog and I can say what I want to; and b) some of the people that I thought would be in our corner and supportive as we walk this unknown road have proven us wrong; I needed to get a lot of this off of my chest.
And putting it out here for all of you to read, is a relief all on its own.
So…here’s what we do know:
- Noah has severe anxiety.
- Noah has moderate to severe sensory processing issues/disorder.
- While he gets along with other children, he prefers to be around adults and for the last several years has latched onto one specific classmate and rarely associates with any other children.
- He is obsessive about three things: sharks, dinosaurs and football.
- He can catch a football and hit a baseball, but he can’t ride a bike or a scooter and he can’t dribble a basketball.
- Reading is very, very difficult for him. Tears are shed almost daily over reading homework because he doesn’t “get” it.
- Likewise he excels at math because he says numbers are easy.
- Noah was very delayed in walking, talking and potty training.
- While he can speak fluently now, his enunciation is still not where it should be for a seven year old child.
- He throws tantrums. And please don’t tell me that “he’s a child and all children throw tantrums” because I know that. These aren’t typical childhood tantrums. These are hold him down because he tries to hurt himself tantrums. Tantrums that have in the last several weeks brought about strep throat thanks to the screaming, broken glasses when he threw things. In the past he actually busted the door frame at the dentist office when he couldn’t figure out how to open the door. These are not typical 6/7 year old child tantrums.
- I vaccinated my children. And so help me God if one more person shows me an article on autism being caused by vaccines or asks me if that’s what might have caused it, I can’t promise how I will react. Keep your opinion about that to yourself. Because I will block you/unfollow you on Facebook. No matter who you are.
And just a note for those of you who believe that, that’s fine well and good. We all have opinions. But, before you go sharing articles that slam parents who choose to vaccinate their kids and blaming them for their child’s condition, take a moment to consider how a mom who has an autistic child and DID vaccinate may feel reading that.
- My child is not stupid. Or incapable. Or slow. Or whatever stigma you place on children with difficulties.
- Likewise, your child isn’t better than mine because he/she is excelling at something. And rubbing that success in? It’s kind of rude.
- We have received more support from public school teachers and staff since we learned of this possible diagnoses than we ever did at Private School last year. Please don’t tell me that he wouldn’t be having trouble if he were in a private school setting. Because, well, that’s kind of stupid.
Much of my stress has come from the tantrums that we have been dealing with the last three months. Many people, family included, had just deemed Noah as a “difficult” child or a “strong willed” child. That’s not what is going on. It took forever to get the support and the backing of a pediatrician because all we heard, like many who I have talked to, was that “he would grow out of it.”
There are things that make Noah seem like any other child. But what you see in public and what goes on at home are very difficult. You don’t see the slamming of his fists and kicking of his feet when he doesn’t understand something. Or when the wrong kind of hot dog is purchased. Or when his lunch box falls over and spills the contents on the floorboard of the backseat.
You don’t see the tears when he comes home from school upset and heartbroken because the children at school picked on him because he couldn’t figure out how to cross the monkey bars. You don’t see the heartbreak when a little girl tells him that he needs to apologize for being ugly because he doesn’t understand that sometimes everything that he thinks is fun and interesting isn’t interesting to someone else, and he gets upset.
My husband and I have read books upon books and done plenty of studying. We are in the “testing” phase…where we are waiting for all of the appointments to finish lining up to get the “official” diagnoses.
Our main focus right now is getting answers. No matter what those answers are.
We know that we can handle whatever situation comes our way. I have more faith than I ever have because I have had to. The days are very, very difficult. The emotional toil of watching your child struggle and not being able to help him wears me out. The physical aspects of having to hold him and cradle him to soothe him, are draining. Listening to the screaming and the shouting and the crying is nerve wracking.
So some days, like these last few days, it gets to be a bit much and I cry. And I drink more coffee than I should. And I have to take an extra pill or two for my anxiety (don’t worry I’m allowed).