The A-word: Chapter 1
Our journey started out like any other. I had a textbook pregnancy with no major complications and hardly any mild ones. I was a on a raw diet for the first 6 months because that was all that I could stomach. It’s a terrible thing to go through when you are a total foodie. LOL.
I remember it was 2 am and I got out of bed to go to the bathroom and as I stood up, I felt a weird sensation and I thought I had somehow lost control of my bladder. I started to panic because I hadn’t packed my hospital bag yet, I was still two weeks away from my due date, and I swear I was going to pack the bag the next day! As it turns out, my water did break right then and there. My husband drove me to the hospital and told me it was going to be all right, we’ll figure it out and if I need anything, our home was only 10 minutes away from the hospital.
We got settled in our room and the staff was wonderful and very helpful. When my contractions started coming in, a nurse asked if I had wanted an epidural and he showed me the needle. I quickly yelled no and some other words and he took it away. I have this fear of needles, and I tolerate it the best I can (by pretending it’s not happening) when I need to give blood samples or get shots, but the epidural was too big and scary looking to pretend… Anyway it came time to push and a short while later out came my beautiful baby boy!
I remember the first time I laid eyes on him. His perfect full lips, his kind of bald head, and his perfect twinkling set of toes. My Jacob.
Fast forward to reaching all of our milestones. He didn’t…at least not on time, we went to see what the doctor had to say. The first time was at 6 months when he wasn’t sitting up…the next time was at 8 months when he wasn’t crawling…then when at 12 months when he wasn’t babbling or having any kind of baby talk…Our doctor said that some babies are just a little behind…He finally did sit up around 6-7 months and started to crawl around 9 months…and 13 months decided to get up one day and run across the house from the living room to the kitchen into my arms. The entire time though, he was always an ever sweet and loving child towards his mama and daddy, always making eye contact with us to communicate or look for confirmation. He was a huge grey area. If it weren’t for his love and affection, I think the answer would have been a little clearer for everyone involved but it would have been harder on me at the same time.
We started an early intervention program and speech therapy for him. They diagnosed him with Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD-NOS), but was still unsure of where he landed. We ended up being assigned overseas where we had to have him assessed again. It was a long process and after all that was said and done, they informed us that they were not able to meet his needs. He was around 4 when we were officially and finally diagnosed with Autism. He would need intensive speech, physical, and occupational therapy. So begins our journey into Autism.