Road To Diagnosis.

Our little E was recently diagnosed with Autism. I can’t say it was a total surprise. We have had our concerns and have been keeping an eye on certain areas of his development for the past few months. For a long time his symptoms were masked by his constant stream of ear infections and his pain from food allergies. As we were able to get the health problems under control, the symptoms remained. Many of them got worse. Some things that were age appropriate at one time intensified instead of being grown out of.

We had 3 main areas of concern. 1. Speech 2. Tantrums 3. Lack of engagement. It’s hard this young to ascertain whether or not these are symptoms of a strong willed child, being slightly delayed, and/ or personality. So we were quite back and forth for awhile on whether these were things to truly worry about or not.

I had E assessed in Utah before we moved to Ohio for his speech. During the assessment they mentioned that they were actually more concerned about his behavior than his speech. Until then, I had never thought his tantrums were anything to be worried about. I just thought that he had a temper.

I continued to keep an eye on him. During this time, he started to regress in speech and in his social skills. He stopped babbling. And his tantrums became more frequent with more self harm involved.

As a young baby, I was never able to get him to engage in back and forth games or even back and forth facial expressions. He would laugh when we would throw him in the air or make funny noises at him but even that came late. (He didn’t smile or laugh until around 6 months.) If it was something that required a back and forth exchange, I could never get him to engage. These were things that I wrote off to his personality.

It took 2 long assessments before we were even referred to the developmental pediatrician. He exhibited enough red flags in the first 2 assessments that we were referred. The original pediatrician that we wanted to see was booked until September. After calling around, we finally found a great pediatrician in Michigan and made an appointment. He just happened to have a cancellation and we were able to get in. As prepared as I was for the diagnosis, it was still jolt to the system to actually hear the words.

We’re very optimistic and very grateful that we were able to catch it so young. We are starting intensive therapies with him. It will be very time consuming, but we’re willing to do anything and everything to help E.

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4 thoughts on “Road To Diagnosis.

  1. From my heart to yours and Eric. I love E. U are an especially wonderful mother. All will be well. Therapists are angels for real. U two have all that u need-and know how and who to go to to refill. That is the most comforting assurance all the rest of the family like me can ask for. Your Smith family will always be praying for Ethan

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  2. I will also keep little E in my prayers. I have been in communication with your younger sister for over a year now, and consider her to be a close friend. (I also have epilepsy, and she’s the one who encouraged me to start a blog of my own) I hope everything works out for you and your family. Enjoy these days, they fly by all too quickly!

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  3. Annie, I’m so glad for an official diagnosis, at least, because I’ve heard that catching it this young is truly helpful. I’m also grateful that Ethan has a mom as devoted, wonderful and caring as you. You’ve been through so much already and you’ve handled it so well. I’m going to call you soon so we can catch up about this and everything else. Miss you lots.

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