Monday, October 22, 2007

AUTISM

Wonder where I've been lately? I've been totally consumed. I've been reading books, running to Coleman's school to put out fires, crying through meetings with his teachers, pulling my hair out because I don't know what to do half the time. He has autism and I've never really mentioned it on my blog because this has always been a place for me to come to brag, to focus on all the good things in our lives, to paint a perfect picture of our family. Well, we are not perfect. We have love, hugs and big laughs but we also suffer.



I have only posted once in the past 2 months because everytime I sit down to write (which has been several times) I can't be creative enough to leave out the autism. It has the #1 spot on our priority list lately. So, let's see this as my "coming out" blog, of sorts.


We've known about Coleman's autism for the past 2 years. He was originally diagnosed as PDD-NOS (Pervasive Developmental Disorder- Not Otherwise Specified.) This is a general diagnosis under the autism umbrella. We started him in Special Ed. PreK and he was there for the past 2 years. He really did well there- a model student and really bright to boot! We were so excited when they told us that he would be mainstreaming into a "typical" kindergarten class this year.


Coleman started kindergarten 2 months ago and is as bright (if not brighter) than all of his classmates but you can tell that he socially a bit different. He has trouble looking people in the eye. He has trouble iniatating conversations with his peers. He stims quite a bit, which means that he kind of retreats to his own world and runs around with seemingly no idea what he's doing. (Although, we know that he is very aware of his surroundings when he's in "stimming mode." He just seems to be unaware. Make any sense?) Ever since beginning kindergarten, Coleman's more "unusual" behaviors have resurfaced because of how overwhelming it's been for him to adjust to this new setting (24 kids, only 1 teacher!) He's been having meltdowns in class. He's been carried to the principal's office on more than one occasion. They call me once he gets to that point and I come running to either take him home or calm him down enough to go back to class. It's been so tough on him.



BUT we have hope! We took Coleman to see a DAN! (defeat autism now!) doctor and we will be starting biomedical treatments to help minimize his behaviors. This includes dealing with excesses of yeast in his system, building up his immunity and perhaps changing his diet. Will and I are both really excited to finally be able to do something that might help Coleman. Many kids have been treated by DAN! doctors and shown dramatic improvements, to the point that they are indistinguishable from their peers. Of course, insurance covers none of this and we are bound to end up in debt, but we HAVE to do it. Is there even a choice when it comes to our kids?! We do what we have to do.



So, keep us in your prayers. We could use them. And since no blog is complete without a picture. Here's a cute pic of Coleman on Halloween (he had a blast trick 'r' treating, by the way.) I love you, my beautiful boy!

6 comments:

Jen & the Claw said...

Coleman is definitely a special boy and he'll get through this with your love and support. I'm sure that if you have faith in the Lord, he will do everything he can to help you. I will keep him in my prayers! I love that lil guy!

Jonathan's Mommy said...

Wow, I obviously had no idea. I will definitely keep you and your family in my prayers.

Love that picture, too! Coleman is an adorable little boy.

Anonymous said...

I often visit your site through a link on my friend's site. When I saw your Autism post, I wanted to pass along some information. About three weeks ago, Jenny McCarthy was on Oprah promoting her new book about her son's battle with Autism. Obviously, I initially questioned crazy Jenny McCarthy, but she's definitely passionate about sharing the information she has learned. She talked about changing his diet, clearing him of yeast, and putting him in different counseling groups. Maybe she has something to offer your family. Good luck and keep up the fight!

supermommysquared said...

I so much enjoyed reading your Coleman post because it illustrates what a wonderful mother you are and what an amazing boy Coleman is. He has already come so far and I have no doubt that with his family he will become so high funtioning that he cannot be distinguished from his peers. We have come so far in diagnoses and treatment of autism that I have no doubt Coleman's brillance will be appreciated by the world and this time will merely be a blip in his life. We will keep all of you in our prayers!!
PS I haven't gotten anything from Jessica recently, so tell her to send it again :)

Dad said...

I know you and Will will do everything you can. That is all you can do. You are a great mom and Coleman could not be in any better hands then yours. Gwen and I will remember Coleman, you and your entire family in our prayers.
I love you, Baby.

Dad

Christina Balzly said...

Hello,
My name is Christina, I noticed (on the PDD ivillage site) that you live in Utah, and followed you to your blog.

What DAN doctor is Coleman seeing? We have had appointments with a couple (one in UT and one in TX ) but ended up canceling. We just started the GFCF diet, as well.

Anyway, I wanted to say Hello to another "Utahn".

You have done an amazing job on your blog!

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