The CDC released shocking (or maybe not so shocking) data recently.
It is now estimated that 1 in 68 children are diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder.
One of these 68 is MINE. And today is Autism Awareness Day.
On November 12, 2013 (my birthday), I did the hardest thing I've ever had to do.
I dropped Memphis off at a renown children's psychiatric hospital. He was allowed home only on weekends and for the holidays. He returned home, for good, on February 2, 2014.
His behavior was out of control. He was diagnosis as high functioning autistic nearly 2 years ago. Everything seemed like it was "too much" for him, and nobody knew what else to do. The interventions we'd put into place at home & at work would only work for a little while. You could tell he was unhappy & struggling. So, although it was hard, we stood together as a family and we got through it. We were there for each other and we didn't take the time we did have together for granted. Slowly, on his weekend visits home, we saw little improvements.
I'm not going to lie... I was scared as hell for the day to come when he was back home and ready to go back to school. But the help he received at the hospital, the help WE received, was amazing and they provided him with tools he needed to function and get through each day.
We have not had a single phone call home from the school since he's been back. Before he was hospitalized, he had been home for more than month, and before that, I was getting at least 2 calls a day about his behavior... it's amazing. I've been afraid to share his story & his successes on the blog because I didn't want to jinx it. But our son is back... and better than ever.
What better day to share our good news but on Autism Awareness Day!
For anyone struggling through a diagnosis, please know that with the right information and the right team, our children can shine and they can show us each & every day how truly special they are! The more people understand and are educated about what being on the "spectrum" means, the easier it will be for this children & families to get the help & resources they really, truly need.
Please support Autism Awareness Day by wearing BLUE! "Light It Up Blue" is an international even wehre many businesses are lighting up their businesses with blue lights... an easy way for YOU to show your support is to dress in BLUE!