About this blog.

My son was diagnosed with PDD-NOS at 24 months. I created this blog to bring meaning to the often-confusing label. Sometimes I have answers. Other times, just more questions.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

The second birthday party clichee and a happy epilogue.

The second birthday party clichee goes something like this: the child, suspected of autism, is surrounded by a flurry of joy and merriment, but wants no part of it. Instead he is in his own world, isolated and alone. Mom is despondent with grief. The Autism Sourcebook, which I blogged about, opens with such a tale. Age 2 is generally when the symptoms of autism become evident, and a birthday party serves to bring out the typical/atypical contrast.

Sadly, this describes Brad's second birthday party to a tee, from my perspective anyway. I was mostly swallowing my tears, wondering if Brad would ever talk or return my affection.

Flashforward to last week, when Brad turned three. Yes, we have a label and it's the one I had dreaded just a year earlier. But with the realization came enlightenment and understanding. And Brad is doing so much better than I ever could have imagined. He's talking and showing affection. He charms us every day with his emerging personality, quirky as it is. We've come to appreciate his difference, not fear it. (Of course, that difference doesn't appear severe or disabling at this point.)

I just wish I knew a year ago what I know today.


Stimey said...

What a happy post. It is amazing how your perspective can change, huh?

~ April ~ said...

A happy post, indeed! Here's to another year of accomplishments and happy surprises!

Shari said...

This is a wonderful post. We didn't have a 2nd birthday party cliche. I can honestly say I was clueless. I'm hoping to be where you are in 6 mo. (Our boys are almost exactly 6 mo. apart) I am already seeing progress with him, but I get discouraged sometimes. I can't wait to hear how Brad's first week of preschool went. He's adorable in that video. :-)

Laura said...

Thanks everyone. I feel very fortunate.

Shari, on behalf of Brad, thanks for the compliment. And interesting, so our kids are age matched. Not Just a Label in my blogring is also around the same age. It's good for me to go through this with some one else, even if only in the virtual sense.

Elizabeth Channel said...

So encouraging! What a great perspective! I needed that today.

rainbowmummy said...

At least you know now, some parents never seem to "get it".

So did you have Lost theme just to spite me? :0P

Laura said...

rainbowmummy - nahhh I'm just tapped out on creativity.

Anonymous said...

Yes, what a hope-filled post. Here's to another year of Brad doing even more than you can imagine. That video clip is SO endearing!