My family and I are currently on a journey of discovery. It began when Hubby and I first started suspecting – for real this time, without wondering jokingly – that Mr 3 was autistic. It continued through doctor appointments and referrals, through two Paediatric appointments, and through numerous forms, CentreLink visits, phone calls with relevant groups, and an interview at the Early Childhood Developmental Program coordinator at Talara Primary College.
And in this journey that our family is taking, through the diagnosis and subsequent creation of an ‘Early Intervention Program’ for Mr 3’s autism, I’ve discovered that I’m having lots of ‘Lightbulb moments’. I had another yesterday.
Soon after midday, I took Hubby away from his work and we took our three cherubs down to the Brighton centre of Autism Queensland. Our appointment was with Kris Jennings, from the Autism Advisor Program. And in the midst of her questions, something clicked inside my head. I swear it was huge enough to be audible! And looking back now, I’d answered all of these questions before – but maybe it was their order that helped me to make the connection.
You see, one of my first indicators was his pretty complete lack of spoken language. I’d actually blogged about it earlier, humorously – maybe as a coping mechanism myself! But he has very few words and phrases, and the vast majority of these are only intelligible if you’re familiar with his desires and his behaviours in that specific context. So I was aware of his need for Speech Therapy. And I was also aware that his diet was a problem (he basically refuses all food with the exception of bread and milk). But it wasn’t until yesterday that I’d put the two of them together.
Yes, I knew that he was having trouble with the actual formation of his words. The vowel sounds weren’t really a problem – it was just all the different consonants, and their combinations. But the thought occurred to me that the two were related. That food is a problem for exactly the same reason that speaking is a problem. It’s muscle usage. Ha!!!
So, chalk up yet another “lightbulb moment” for the mum. They’re getting to be quite regular occurrences…!
Anyway, the upshot of the meeting is that we (meaning ‘me’, Hubby’s too busy) now have a few more leads to follow when it comes to developing an Early Intervention Program for our youngest child. And, due to his high number of strengths, the more intensive the Early Intervention, the more effective it will be.
So here goes…!
CC image courtesy soils at http://www.flickr.com/photos/an_solas/6539937579/