My Child…My Pride.
Anne calls me every morning but today was different. She cried, blabbering about something, and wouldn’t stop. It took me a minute or two to understand she was talking about her son.
Jaden, her son is 4. A very smart, playful boy. His grandparents took care of him when Anne juggled between work and home. Jaden would run to his ‘paapi’(grandfather) for everything. But recently they had to move out of town for a couple of months. This broke him to a point where he wouldn’t play or talk to Anne for long hours.
Initially, she didn’t mind Jaden sitting alone or being fussy about a thing or two. But within a fortnight things were to take a drastic change. He stopped talking and forgot words he already knew. He wasn’t able to eat or sleep for days. That’s when Anne sensed something is wrong.
She took him to the doctor. After the initial assessment sessions, he confirmed Jaden has Autism.
Anne was devastated. She couldn’t believe her ears. Therapy sessions were set up for Jaden and after a few sessions, he started making progress. But the pandemic and lockdown confined them to home again with little or no support. She couldn’t watch her son going to that silent phase again where he is alone and confused.
She stepped up and started talking about it to her friends. The support she got was overwhelming. Her fear of being alone and being judged vanished away with the right people around.
Now through virtual calls, therapy sessions continue for Jaden with Anne beside him offering him love and support.
Anne still calls me every day but she is more confident and happy. She’s in this new phase of life where she is learning more about autism.
Anne is trying to connect with her son more these days. She doesn’t cry anymore but she truly understands and accepts who he is. She is not embarrassed or guilty but proud to be his mom.
To be known as Jaden’s mom!
Autistic Pride day is celebrated on June 18 every year. It’s the time to celebrate their identity. It’s a pride celebration for autistic people.
Autism is not a disability, it’s a different ability. It’s not here to isolate you or rob your happiness. It’s not easy with all the challenges and repetitive behaviors. You don’t need to have all the answers.
It’s about letting go and moving with the flow. It’s about not forcing anything upon them. Every child with autism is going to be unique in his own ways which you will never find in a book...
Spending more time and taking those tiny steps with them can teach you more than any session or book can teach you. Try to experience every aspect of their emotion. It's like traveling through the road less taken.
All you have to do is pay attention, stick to a routine and be consistent and patient.
So today let us take pride in our children. Let us love and nurture them.
It’s all about not giving up...
It’s all about standing up for your loved ones...
Let’s be the ‘change..’