The Diagnosis – Part 2

The Diagnosis – Part 2

I would start from where I’d left ……

The Specialist confirmed the official diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and so, began our journey. 

I remember the drive back home after the diagnosis, I could no longer see through the fishbowl tears that had settled on my eyeballs. I could hear hubby was saying something but I wasn’t listening. I was lost in my thoughts ‘Why me?’, I cursed God, I cursed my luck I cursed my life I was fearful for kiddo’s future, we had a lot of work ahead.

Flashback, I went to the day she was born, it was 1st of August and my sister had joyfully acclaimed that she would be our Numero Uno/ Number One. All through her growing up years I had witnessed her high IQ, her keen observation and problem-solving skills. She was quiet but independent. She was quirky and fearless, and I had high hopes for her. I truly believed that she would be Number One in whatever field she chooses for herself. But now it felt like everything I had dreamed for her up until that moment was gone. One diagnosis had robbed me of all my hopes. Learning that my child will struggle her entire life to do things most people take for granted was not only frightening, but heartbreaking. Questions flooded my mind. Would my three-year-old daughter ever be able to fully communicate? What type of relationship could she and I have as she grew older? Would she have friends as her autism became more noticeable? Would she ever be invited to a play date or a birthday party? Why was she denied an even playing field?

My deep love for her was as strong as ever, but my plans for her and our family were now shattered. Following few months were the months of depression. Months of ugly heartbreaks, tears, sleepless nights, breaking down behind closed doors, unsure of how to move forward. I was depressed because I thought my kid was broken, and I didn’t know how to fix her. My suffering stemmed from my Ignorance and Fear. Ignorance about Autism and Fear of Change. And it took months, but I eventually realized that parenting is not about fixing. It’s about supporting, accepting, finding best practices, and fighting for your kid’s rights. Its about accepting the changes kids bring to your life, even if they weren’t what you expected

Today I embrace my daughter’s differences and realize that she has opened my heart and mind to a beautiful way to seeing the world that I never would have known existed had she not been diagnosed with autism. That is not to say it has been an easy acceptance. It was very tough to deal with in the beginning. Like it is to drive on a snowy day …. When the visibility is poor, the road is slippery, you can no longer feel your hands and it’s hard to hold your ground. But gradually it got better, we adapted and we got accustomed to the change. I learnt to cope with the diagnosis, just the way I learnt to drive in the snow. However, I’m no expert, I still have my days, there are still those days when I find it hard to balance, when things seem slipping away from my hands and I experience a stumble, but I don’t quit trying, I can’t. My kids are watching me, and I have to show them that Autism is not bad or less, it’s just different and different is not the end of the world. It’s just the beginning of a new one.  

Autism is not an illness, or a disease and it is as much a part of my child as the color of her eyes and hair. I now know without a doubt that my daughter and everything that makes her who she is, has been and shall continue to be, the most absolutely perfect gift God could have ever given me. Don’t know what future holds for us, but my hope, my dreams, my faith in my quirky little genius have returned.

I am no intellectual and have been a very average student throughout my life but I do understand simple mathematics and its basic principal affirms

‘You have to be odd, to be Number 1’

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