The third part of our Autism Awareness Series will feature a local family and their autistic son, who wished to remain anonymous.
Their son is an only child at home, but has older siblings who adore him. The family supports their son all year long and tries to bring awareness to autism throughout the year, not just during Autism Awareness Month. As she likes to describe it, Autism Awareness Month is not just in April, but in her household it is every second and every hour of the day.
The youngster has had a great experience at Pleasanton Primary School.
“Pleasanton Primary is amazing! They go above and beyond. They are exceptional,” said the boy’s mother.
Her son was 2-years-old when she noticed he seemed delayed with words. He received assistance from Camino Real with physical therapy and speech therapy. They then visited Nurse Practitioner Diki Reyes who was all on board with the family, said the mother. Through the Autism Community Network in San Antonio, her son received the autism diagnosis. The youngster’s mom reminds everyone that every kid is completely different.
“I knew something was not right. He was not meeting certain goals. Now he is speaking two-three word sentences. His imagination has grown. The teachers and aides do a great job.”
She stays connected with a couple of other moms. They share their frustrations with insurance and other issues.
“The ladies are very supportive. It is awesome to see.”
She has learned not to push her son in certain situations. The family is aware of his needs and those times that might make him uncomfortable, like birthday parties.
“We don’t do celebrations unless he wants to.” She describes her son as a ball of joy with a kind heart. “If he sees someone crying, he is aware of them.”
She is an advocate for autism and has also received support from the community.
“I know lots of parents. They tell their children that if my son wanders off to be on the look-out. They do an amazing job of keeping an eye on him,” said the mom.
She teaches others that autism is not just something that comes and goes or that can be cured. It is about learning to love your child unconditionally and working through all the struggles and triumphs.
“It is a challenge, but it makes us aware of our small successes. With the grace of God, we have faith to hold onto when we have good and bad days and that definitely has played a major role in this new year.”