It’s Question-able is a feature that we have started On Aisle 9 in response to the many questions we get from our readers, friends, family members and complete strangers. Keep them coming in, you can send your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
What was the conversation like between you and your spouse when the two of you were first told about Grant’s diagnosis – being an autistic child?
The first conversation Raphael and I had was without words; we only hugged and cried, and that one conversation lasted for hours, into the next day. The deep hurt that comes from knowing our son would face such an unfair challenge was devastating to us. We stumbled to find our own words to even discuss what this meant for the wholeness of our family. The questions far outnumbered the answers. Only time would tell our story. We began to journey day by day, celebrating inch-stones, not milestones, learning that every bit of progress made was worthy of recognition.
Sarena is very gifted when it comes to writing and easily expresses her feelings through words. I on the other hand, though I talk for a living, found it very difficult to share my feelings concerning our sons diagnosis. When I finally worked up the nerve to address my feelings, this post is what they looked like, Cutting The Grass.
What signs did you and your spouse notice that forced you to have him tested?
At nearly two years of age, Grant stopped talking, and returned to babbling. Even that was infrequent. There were far-off stares and repetitive and nonsensical behaviors like running back and forth into corner walls, flicking lights off and on, and shredding paper into tiny pieces with his hands. The combination of which was extremely alarming. Something was not right, but never did we imagine this would be our family’s battle. We are fighting back though, through early intervention, speech and language therapies, ABA (Applied Behavioral Analysis) Therapy, and social camps.
Can you describe your fear of the unknown for your son’s future?
In as much as every tomorrow can be intimidating with thoughts of his continued education, his independent living, and his socially acceptable behavior, it can also be an opportunity for hope and hard work to triumph. I try very hard to live in today. Today he looked at me. Today he voluntarily gave me a hug. Today we had three separate conversations. Today we got through a meltdown. Today he laughed and danced to the music in his soul. Every today gets me to tomorrow, and that’s where my hope is…