Luke's Asperger diagnosis was bittersweet; on the one hand, we felt liberated from the labels of “bad parents” and “difficult child,” while on the other hand we felt grief over the struggles that will continue throughout our son's life. It has been a steep learning curve to grasp not only a clearer picture of the disorder but also our educational, medical, and therapeutic options. I was told by more than one ASD mom that coordinating everything would become a second job, and it has.
Luke has thrived in the months since starting preschool in an autism support class. In six months he has learned his alphabet, counting, how to draw circles (and actual pictures!), how to cut with scissors…things I’d fruitlessly tried to teach him for the past few years! He astounds us with his excellent memory, his love towards family, friends, and especially his little brother, and his enthusiasm for his special interest (vehicles of all kinds).
One of the biggest blessings of Luke's diagnosis has been becoming part of the autism community. Suddenly, we have something in common with people we would never have connected with before. There is an unspoken understanding when you meet another ASD parent; though your children are different in many ways, they have similar daily struggles and victories. And how sweet those little victories are! It is so encouraging to share with one of these precious friends that Luke stayed dry all night or he ate something new or he endured a haircut without having a meltdown…and get a cheer as if he'd won a marathon!
We are proud of our Luke. We are proud of him for the challenges he has overcome and the challenges that lie ahead. He is truly a blessing, and his diagnosis has stretched us all and caused us to grow in ways we never thought we'd need to.
Laura, Luke’s Mommy