5 years!

5 years ago today a group of professionals sat around a table and decided my 5 year old girl was on the Autism Spectrum.
She met 10/12 of the criteria and was diagnosed with Childhood Autism.
I will never forget that day.
A day of bitter sweet emotions.

I wasn’t shocked, I wasn’t sad, I actually didn’t feel very emotional at all.
I already knew she had Autism, they just confirmed it.
It was the reactions of others that upset me and shocked me.
She was still my girl, no diagnosis would ever change that.
I didn’t want their pity, their sorrys, or their if there is anything I can dos…..I wanted support, I wanted a hug, I wanted someone to tell me they knew it all along.

5 years on I still face the same battles.
Yes, Autism can be very difficult to deal with, but it is still reactions of people that upset me most.
This is one reason why I talk about Autism all the time, I don’t want it to be something that needs to be pitied, I want it to be just another part of my girl.

Autism is not a disease, Autism is not something wrong, Autism is not an illness.
Autism is a different way of thinking.
Autism is a difference.

5 years…time has flown.
I am really glad we got a diagnosis and have been able to learn about Autism to try to understand my girl more.
One piece of advice I wish I had been given?
Never forget your child is still a child.
I had a good few years where I focused so much on Autism that I forgot that under that diagnosis was still my girl.
I realised I didn’t need to analyze every behaviour, I just had to make sure she was safe and enjoy my little girl.
Autism may be part of my girl, but it is not my girl.

This photo was taken on that day and I absolutely love it!
That big puddle was her favourite after school activity!

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