Different, not less.

Hi. My name is Lily and my child has Autism.

I never thought it would be hard to write a sentence that was so simple, yet complex at the same time. That up there is what has been going on for the past several months. That up there is why I haven't been back on this little ole blogger of mine. That up there is what has changed many things for us. So let me start from the beginning, shall I?

Back in October, right before Halloween, I ran into Michael's speech therapist. She had just finished one of the sessions with him in his class. She asked me, "Has anyone ever mention the possibility of Michael being on the spectrum?" My world paused. You know, sort of like when Zack Morris on Saved By The Bell did it time and time again. Yep, just like that. Only this time it wasn't a pause for some funny commentary but this time everything was silent only for the sound of my heart falling into pieces and echoing as they hit the floor. My child on the spectrum? No. I know he was delayed with speech, but to place him there too? I snapped back and I asked her many questions. She answered them the best way she could and said that I would be getting a phone call for another assessment but this time not for speech. I nodded and said "Thank you" without looking too shakey from just receiving the news. How do I mention to my husband about the conversation I just had? How do I even process this? How do I....? (We did have the conservation btw.)

After many IEP meetings, assessments, and evaluations with the school district, it was determined that my little boy, my perfect little boy, does indeed fall in the spectrum. He seems to fall under the "high functioning" category which seems to describe him extremely well. We are in the process of getting him diagnosed medically (in fact, he has an appointment today) to see what our options are and what we can do to help him.

We are still learning what it means to have Autism and what we can do as parents to help him develop a normal functioning life. Our families know and have been the most supportive they have ever been. They too want to help in any way possible. They love him oh so very much, and that is all we ask from them--acceptance.

So, again...

My name is Lily and my child is Autistic. He is different, not less.