Wednesday, October 04, 2006

The A Word

I mentioned in a previous post that George was going to be having some medical testing this week. We went up to the University hospital yesterday to meet with a specialist. It was a long afternoon, but George did great. The nurses and doctor were great with him, and most of the visit was spent just talking about his behavior, so George was able to just relax and play.

Final result, George is on the Autism spectrum. Not Aspergers, like we had thought might be a possibility, the fact that he still really doesn't talk disqualifies him. Asperger's kids are late talkers, but not to the extent he is. He has normal or even above age appropriate motor skills, but his verbal skill and direction following abilities are about the level of a 12 -18 month old. That large gap is what determines Autism. The third area they need to study is his social skills, but that can't be quantified until he's in a school setting, so we need to get him into Head Start as soon as possible.

With help in his verbal and social areas, he should be able to progress with his age group in school, which was our biggest worry. He's considered very low level, high functioning Autistic. Assuming he gets the help he needs, the doctor feels his Autism will be unrecognizable by the time he's done with schooling.

None of this was really surprising to us, but it's all a lot to process. We're all completely drained. But I'm SO glad we pushed to see the specialist, now we know to get him some help beyond just the speech therapy. George is such a happy kid and I'm grateful to know that we have a path to follow and resources to help us.

We love you, buddy!

16 comments:

carinc said...

Wishing you lots and lots of success - I know he'll overcome this, especially with the family he has. There has been so much progress with Autism diagnosis and steps to overcome the different levels. Glad you have a clearer direction to take now.

Tink said...

While you still have a long haul ahead of you, at least you have the directions to take now. I know that George will do just fine as time progresses.

Bonnie said...

That photo of the two of you is so precious! I hope that with time and courage you will all learn to fight it together and I hope that he will progress well. Not much to say on this, just that thinking of you as you go through this and that at least you have something to work with now.

heather said...

It's great you have had him diagnosed. I believe it's early intervention which can really make a huge difference.. and good news that he is low level and will be just fine by the end of schooling, what a relief that must be to you :)

Stacey said...

I glad you were able to get solid answers & can now get moving on intervention and treatment.

Are you still in Virginia? I have a friend who's little boy had a similar diagnosis about 6 months ago and she has a lot of research & info on Virginia policies and things for treament.

glynis said...

God bless your family, Meg. This can be truly draining on a family and you are taking all the right steps to make sure that the journey will lead you to where George needs to go. And I love that photo--what a sweetie!

loonyhiker said...

As a special ed teacher, I have had many students with autism on the high school level and they have ranged from one end of the spectrum to the other. Getting an early start like you have will make all the difference in the world and I truly thank you for doing this. Many parents go through denial for many years which ends up hurting the child in the long run. All of my students with autism have graduated and are working in a paying job now. Stay diligent with George's education though ("the squeaky wheel gets the grease!"). The more involved you stay the better education he will get. Thanks for being such great parents!

Ann said...

I had a friend with a son with a similar diagnosis several years ago... he's now an eighth grader and doing wonderfully. You sound like a great mom and George is a fortunate fellow.

Darla said...

I just read your blog and I want to wish you the best of success now that a diagnosis has been made regarding your son, George. As a mother, my heart understands the strength you will need and also know that someone we as moms find it. Good luck to you.....your picture with your son shows your love for him. :)

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