Blog Written by: Cathy Piso (Mother)
I am a mom of an adorable, happy go lucky 4 year old little guy named Logan. Logan was diagnosed with Autism in December of last year. We realized when he was about 2 and half years old that his speech was not increasing. He was sick numerous times with ear infections and sore throats from age 6 months until 2 and half years. We assumed that he was behind due to all his illness. All his other milestones were normal until then.
When I asked my friends they told me not to worry. I repeatedly heard: “Cathy, he is a boy. Boys are late with talking”. Then when preschool came I really noticed how far he was behind and when I saw how he was at school he seemed so different. We started to ask the question: Could it be Autism? But when we looked it up, Logan didn’t seem to have all the “classic symptoms”.
But at school he was quiet, focused only on trains and/or cars and not socially aware of anyone in the room and he had very little or no eye contact. At school he used little or no words. At home he played with many things. He gave us some eye contact and at that time had little signs of the symptoms of an Autistic child. As months passed more and more symptoms appeared.Eye contact decreased, hand flapping increased, anxiety had increased and getting him out of his “own world” was very difficult.
A little about Logan. He is very sweet. He loves to cuddle and he loves to be affectionate. He does like to flap his hands or jump when he gets excited. Just think when you get excited you like to scream, shout out in excitement or tell someone about your news, well this is his way of getting that energy out without using words. When I first saw Logan do it I knew it was a sign and feared seeing it. Now I appreciate it as it makes me see how truly excited he truly is.
Logan loves to play in sand and dirt. He loves trains, cars, jumping on the trampoline, playing with playdoh, catching bugs. Logan loves to chase & play with his sister. He loves to play outside and he loves his teddy bear that he sleeps with at night and also he loves his Ipad and it is sure amazing what he can do on it!
I think our house is just a little quieter in comparison to house of another 4 year old. To us he is “normal”, but he is our normal. And he is amazing. We appreciate every word, every expression, and every accomplishment as we know it is hard for him, and every day he amazes us.
Logan has begun therapy in March, and since then, we have seen such a huge change in him. We are so optimistic and see tons of potential in our lil’ man. We decided to try a new form of therapy called R&R, (Reference and Regulate). It’s a type of social thinking therapy. I knew ABA was also an amazing type of therapy as well, but when we heard about this type of therapy we were eager to try it. Since therapy Logan has become hugely socially aware. You call his name and he responds. He has gained way more words and sentences. He is using prepositions, has expressive words and “sees” the world around him. Logan now says way more words without promptinghim. He plays with other kids and actually seeks playmates out now. His eye contact now is amazing. It is like his world finally opened.
I have had many people tell me they had no idea he has Autism, but I know the general public’s understanding of Autism is so limited, just as mine was before we had Logan. Yes he is not “cured” and has a long way to go, but the changes Logan has gone through in the last 7 months are amazing. We have learned to be patient, to appreciate, to love even more, to cherish and to enjoy every second and most importantly to NEVER under-estimate.
If you are new to the diagnosis, do not mourn the child you thought you were “supposed” to have, and enjoy the child you DO have, and with you being a proud supporter, they can get through anything and it can be truly life changing for him and yourself as well.
We have a poster above my son’s bed, which he loves of course as it’s a train, and it says “Full Steam Ahead to Possibilities” I truly believe he has amazing possibilities ahead of him, I truly do and I do feel he is a blessing and he is what makes us smile each and every day!
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