Adam's Journey

Homeopathic Healing of Autism

The Diagnosis – Two Weeks Later

on February 16, 2011

“Sooooo.  What do YOU think?”  This question will be burned in my memory forever.  I realize now that Dr. Mahoney was checking in to see how prepared we were for the diagnosis.

In all honesty, even though we had frequently talked about our “autistic concerns” and had even implemented several ASD interventions (such as the GFCF diet and vitamin/mineral supplementation) I was still surprised by the diagnosis.  I think I had expected that Adam had progressed enough that he would evade a diagnosis for another year.  Even as Dr. Mahoney went about his long winded speech on Pervasive Development Disorders, I still refused to accept ASD as the diagnosis.  I think I actually said “Sooo, the diagnosis is PDD?” a couple of times toward the end of the appointment to which Dr. Mahoney gave some vague answers (or maybe I wasn’t fully present; not wanting to accept where he was heading).  Finally, Dr. Mahoney cut to the chase:  “OK.  Under the umbrella of pervasive development disorders there are Rhett’s syndrome, Childhood Disintigrative Disorder (CDD), Asperger’s, PDD-Not Otherwise Specified and Autism Spectrum Disorder.  Adam can’t have Rhett’s because he’s not a girl.  Adam can’t have CDD because he didn’t acquire certain developments and then lose them.  Adam can’t have Asperger’s because Asperger’s kids develop language normally.  That leaves PDD-NOS and ASD.”  Dr. Mahoney went on to explain that Adam could possibly fit either category but that the individual labels are currently being reviewed by the medical community and they will all be reduced to ASD in a couple of years anyway.

Dr. Mahoney DID say it was perplexing that Adam displayed some developments that are typical of 3 year olds.  For example, his knowledge of shapes and colours and his ability to draw pictures beyond a scribble.  “His strengths are strong yet his weaknesses are strong” Dr. Mahoney said illustrating his point with his hand riding an invisible roller coaster of tall hills and deep valleys.  In my hopelessness, I cling to this as being a good thing and I’ve realized I make a point of including it every time I recount his assessment.  Perhaps I need to reassure myself and to everyone else that Adam is smart.  Adam IS smart.  Adam is SMART. 

Do I believe it?  How will others believe it if I don’t believe it.

Ever since the diagnosis I find myself looking at Adam through the lens of autism.  How did I not definitively SEE that he was autistic until now?  It’s like my blinders have been lifted and a new reality presents itself.  Even during the assessment I was describing how well Adam’s social skills had developed:

“He always points out certain things he sees on the TV.  It’s like he wants me to acknowledge and share in what he sees.  And he ONLY does it with me.  Not Jon.  He’ll hunt me down wherever I am in the house to come see the ladybug in his Toopy movie!” 

To which Dr. Mahoney asked “Almost like a ritual?” 

Enter sound of my enthusiam deflating here – farting balloon style. 

If my life was sitcom, there would be plenty of farting balloon sounds these days.  *Sigh*

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2 responses to “The Diagnosis – Two Weeks Later

  1. Taina Walsh says:

    Thankyou for sharing so deeply Hanna. It IS painful. It is part of the process of acceptance and healing…and then renewed strength to go forward in the future. Take comfort that you are on the best path for him already but you will need to take many deep breaths through the process. There is alot of hope and yes…ADAM IS SMART!!!!! When you see him emerge from this prison called autism, you will be amazed !!! A big hug from me 🙂
    Taina

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