I am still getting the hang of this blogging thing. I am quite a perfectionist in some ways. It makes writing a challenge as I am never satisfied that I used the proper words, grammar, spelling (I am a horrible speller), punctuation, etc….
I go back and rewrite incessantly, can you say OCD? Maybe just a bit. But I am going to forewarn you. I intend to resits the urge toward perfection (I am not likely to achieve it anyway) in favor of getting our story out. It isn’t going to be pretty, but neither was the journey.
From the time my 5th child was born he was a bit different. He wasn’t a cuddly baby, and he had a very volatile temper. We just chalked it up to his being “all boy”. We joked about the North African temper (his father is Algerian). We had already determined not to tell our daughter’s future marriage prospects that their lineage is Algerian and Irish. We figure that would deter even the most layed back and patient of men, lol. When this boy came to us we laughed that the hot headed stubbornness manifested 10 fold in boys. We were to learn that, all joking aside, there really was a genetic component to his behavior.
My husband had friends back home who had gone to France and had their child assessed. They were told that he needed ABA therapy and that the US was the best place to get it. They called and I was given the task of finding this thing, what did they call it, ABA? No idea.
So off to google I went, in search of what, I did not know. I read about ABA. Everything I read kept mentioning Autism. Ok, ABA is an Autism treatment. Can I find it in our area so we can help bring our friends? Yes there is a school 40 hours a week of therapy, they admit children with Autism……. and there is a link….. what exactly is Autism (sure I had watched Rainman like everyone else, but….)?
I began to read the list of symptoms:
- Does not respond to his/her name
- Cannot explain what he/she wants
- Language skills or speech are delayed
- Does not follow directions
- Seems to be deaf at times
- Does not point or wave bye-bye
- Used to say a few words or babble, but now he/she does not
- Throws intense or violent tantrums
- Has odd movement patterns
- Is hyperactive, uncooperative, or oppositional
- Does not smile when smiled at
- Has poor eye contact
- Has difficulty with transitions
- Seems to prefer to play alone
- Gets things for him/herself only
- Is very independent for his/her age
- Does things “early” compared to other children
- Seems to be in his/her “own world”
- Seems to tune people out
- Is not interested in other children
- Walks on his/her toes
- Shows unusual attachments to toys, objects, or schedules
- Child spends a lot of time lining things up or putting things in a certain order.
Ok so when you read a list of symptoms you can get concerned if you child has several of the things on the list right? So what do you think it means when there are 23 symptoms staring at you and your child displays 22 of them?
My child had never lost speech. At 2 years old he didn’t have a word of Mom, or milk (his favorite). He sang songs he heard on TV, and would repeat you if you labeled something. He could say milk when prompted, but never asked for it short of screaming in the kitchen until you figured out what he wanted. This was it. My child was Autistic, no question in my mind. What is ABA?..