My youngest daughter, Sarah will be turning three in March and will be phasing out of the 0 - 3 program that is government funded and has been providing therapy in our home two times a week. When a child turns three, there is a transition process that takes place so that another government funded agency can give proper services and therapy for the child to prepare him or her for school. And, after several hours of testing spread out into several sessions throughout the past couple of weeks, the 'professionals' have reported that my daughter will not be eligible for any services.
With one side of my heart I am relieved! I am thankful to know that we no longer need to have our weekly schedule spent doing therapy. I am also grateful that my daughter tested 'Superior' in language and cognitive skills. I mean, I should be proud, right? However, my concerns are honed in that along with those high results, she tested borderline and very low in social and emotional development. She also struggles with sensory issues as reported by the Occupational Therapist. This report only reiterates my original concerns for my child as I have lived this chapter of parenting several years ago with my oldest daughter, now age seven. My seven year old has Aspergers Syndrome, although, we didn't know that at the time. In fact, we just are learning about it as I key this post in.
Asperger Syndrome is such a tricky disorder that has taxed me as a mother. It has changed my life in ways that I could have never imagined. It has given me a mix of challenges and blessings. And, as I am still learning parent strategies to get through each day and learning to restructure my dreams for my oldest child's future, I now am seeing that both my daughters may be walking in the similar paths.
Life is all about choices. We chose what we will believe, how we will live and who we will be. Although I am tempted to chose to be a victim, befuddled, judged and in daily grief, I chose another window to look out from. I admit that there are days when I do glance from the darkened viewpoint and I am overrun with tears and isolation. I do let myself have healthy pity parties from time to time, I mean after all, it's only fair! I am hoping that the pity parties will occur less and less as I grow into my new role as a mother to children on the autism spectrum.
And, as I watch the psychologist leave my home on a Tuesday morning in February, I am thankful that I am able to process and condense my thoughts long enough to realize what are my challenges. And, I come up with a new mantra as I enter into a new chapter of motherhood:
I will accept the quirks of my children and the ignorance of others and find healthy coping strategies while maintaining an eternal vision.
More about this mantra in future posts...