Thursday, March 29, 2012

Early Intervention

"Early recognition of signs of autism -- a neurodevelopment disorder that leads to impaired language, communication and social skills -- is vital because it can lead to early intervention, says Dr. Gary Goldstein, an autism specialist and president of the Kennedy Krieger Institute in Baltimore.

Will is not autistic, thankfully, that's not a worry for us at this point. However, I read this article and it just further emphasized the need for early intervention. Had our pedi not given us some good warning signs and introduced us to the right next steps, Will still might not be walking or doing as well as he is.

Not to pat myself on the back, but I think you have to be pretty brave to say, "something is not right with my kid" and push for diagnosis. It's nothing I want to do again, but will because it's the right thing for my kid. For a while this pursuit of diagnosis was an unspoken, but real tone of conflict in our house between Neil and I. Neither of us wanted anything to be wrong with Will, but something just did not feel right. We're both glad we now know and can do as much as medically possible to provide for Will.

Early intervention, early diagnosis worked out well for us. I know for some that's not an answer.

Random post, random thought. Happy Thursday!


  1. As someone that has worked with 6- and 7-year olds for 12 years, I am definitely a proponent of early diagnosis. I can also see how difficult it might be to get a diagnosis, though. You listened to your heart, and your heart was right. The mama instinct is rarely wrong (even if we really wish it could be wrong, about the "serious" stuff).

  2. P.S. Loved seeing Will's banner on the postcard I got from the Houston Energy for Life Walkathon! Awesome!!

  3. Please please pat yourself on the back....a lot ;) You are an amazing mom and its great that you are sharing some perspective with other parents. It is hard to feel like you are being critical of your child by thinking there is something not right. Its a very brave thing you did and continue to do for your sweet Will. Not only do you deserve any pats on the back you get, but it could help shake another mom out of denial. Maybe she will push for extra testing, etc. that could give her vital information that could keep her baby healthy.

    A friend of mine has a little girl who is nonverbal, hearing impaired, major heart issues. She spent a long time in the NICU, lots of close calls, etc. Her mama looks at her and sees how far she has come, and then goes to check ups by therapists, etc. who grill her on what she does and doesn't do at home. One SLP rolled her eyes because she hasn't been doing flashcards at home. She's like "flashcards? am I supposed to do that? with a 2 year old?" She came home feeling so discouraged. Like she wasn't doing enough and was failing her little girl. No one else is getting grilled about flashcards. Parents of typically developing kids aren't constantly under the microscope of therapists (many of whom don't have kids and have NO CLUE what it is really like to work, have a child, etc. let alone one with special needs). Its hard to not feel like someone is being critical of you or your child by pointing out delays or abnormalities. Its got to be a tough balance of fighting for services, needs, etc. and listening to your heart when you feel something is not right/pursuing a diagnosis (mama bear) and sometimes telling people to back off (other side of the coin to mama bear). Sounds like you and Neil are a good balance to each other as you navigate this path. Big hugs to you!