A mom’s autism journey

On 29 May 2012 I gave birth to the most beautiful baby boy with blue eyes and the cutest little face.  Another human being is now dependent upon me for survival. More than anything, I wanted to be the best mom possible!

The mom-thing didn’t come naturally for me, it was challenging – except for the unconditional and unfailing love which I felt.  I wanted to hold him all the time, but as he got bigger I noticed that he didn’t enjoy cuddling or being held.  He was ok on my hip, but didn’t want to be cuddled.  Why?  Maybe because of caesarean birth or not breastfeeding? A bonding issue between mom and baby? All these questions raced through my mind…

As a toddler he didn’t respond to us when we called him, he didn’t point at objects like the other kids, had terrible temper tantrums and a speech delay.

I was 5 months pregnant with my second child when we got the diagnosis - Autism with ADHD.  I grieved.  I did not cry – I had to be strong for my devastated husband.  My heart was broken.  What did I do wrong?!

In the weeks and months that followed I learned to be a proud autism mommy.  Louwtjie is still the same boy he has always been, I just needed to reframe the way I look at him.  I am surrounded by a wonderful supportive family, friends and excellent educational intervention - together we are connecting my boy to the world!  And after all, I believe that God has got a plan for us!

Over the next few articles, I will be sharing our journey with you.  I trust that by sharing our experience, more parents will realize that having a special needs child is not a death sentence, but rather the beginning of an unknown, yet very inspiring road ahead.

You might want to read about their Autism Diagnosis.