Encouragement for the Mother Dealing with Autism

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I can still feel the pain in my fists.

Bill had taken Lira outside to play and left me folding clothes in the floor of the living room.

The week had been stressful. The diagnosis positive. Lira had an Autism Spectrum Disorder.

Suddenly, the pressure was more than I could take. I twisted to my knees and placed my head in my hands. The tears poured and the anger swelled up inside of me. I screamed at God as my nails bit into the palms of my hands. I pounded the floor with all my might.

Why my child? Why her? Why me?

Friends would say, “God will not give you more than you can handle.” There was no comfort in that for me. I wanted to punch them. Instead, I beat the floor.

Friends would say, “You must be very special to be blessed with such a special child.” I didn’t feel special. I wanted to scream at them to shut up. Instead, I screamed at God.

Despite the fierceness of my tantrum, the pain in my fists could not compare to the pain in my heart.

Now, six years later, the pain in my heart has softened. Honestly, I didn’t think it ever would. I didn’t think I would ever be happy to have a child with Autism. I wanted her to be typical.

But, God had a different plan.

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Comments

  1. Jennifer says:

    Hi Tabitha.
    I was online looking for, of ALL things, a Caramel Pie recipe from the crock pot. I started looking around and saw that you have an Autistic child.
    Me too.
    He is 3, 4 in October. Diagnosed 2/21/2011, the worst day of my life to date. I was in shock. Looking at all of the other kids at Kennedy Kreiger I thought that my son was just slower than some, “growing at his own pace”-that is what my trusty pediatrician said. A pediatrician I had been with for 12 years with my other two “normal” kids, who told me at 18 different visits that nothing was wrong. I could still strangle him with my bear hands.
    Anyway, I’m still waiting for my heart to heal, over one year later. I have cut all contact with most of my old friends, because who has time for idle conversation? My other son is 4 and is ADHD…..I’m exhausted!!
    I’m so glad I found your blog :).

    • Bless you, Jennifer. I don’t know exactly when my heart began to heal because it was still very raw this time last year… over four years after the diagnosis. There are still days when I hurt… maybe “mourn” is a better word.

      I hope you get some rest. I know exactly what you mean. Without this blog and the trips to church (between rotating illnesses through four kids), I feel very much like I live on an island. {{{HUGS}}}

  2. Hi, Penny. I know how you feel I felt like someone stabbed me in the heart the day I found out my son’s diagnosis of autism. I no longer feel that way but it took me two months before I could talk to anyone about it outside of my family. I felt all my hopes and dreams for him were crushed. Now three or four years later I see all the dreams I hoped for him are still there. He did not change my husband and I had to adjust our thinking. We now feel that there is nothing
    he can’t accomplish or try if he wants to. He is mildly autistic with a language learning disability as well. We have made alot of progress but there is still a long way to go. He is in a special grade two class that focuses on speech for the next two years and I am hoping to see leaps ahead I hope. It takes time but you will heal and move on and realize I hope like I did. It’s not what you had hoped but you can get through this. I still remember crying the day after his diagnosis and saying to my mother, how am I going to make sure he gets all the help he needs. My mother always taught me to be strong and this was why. Be strong and focus on what she can do and progress from there. The road will not be easy but you are her biggest champion. You must fight for her to make sure she gets the help she needs to reach her full potential. I know that if I can do it you can to. Be strong and positive. Hope my story helps and good luck.

  3. My son is 3 and on an educational level was labled with Autism yesterday. We have not obtained a medical diagnosis yet because the appointments for that type of evaluation are 2 years out. I feel hopeless and angry and sad. My boy has been receiving EI since he was 18 months. I mean I knew that there was a possibility, but I was either hoping they would tell me different or was in denial. The school psychologist and Occupational therapist sat down with me and went over the information they gathered from me and his Aide that works with him while in school and that ultimately they were changing his label from developmentally delyed to Autism. I thought I was doing evwould not end up

    • Oh, Lena… I understand and I am so sorry. Please allow yourself to cry if needed. There is a strange mourning process I think we have to go through in order to give up our vision for our child’s future. Even though our plan is shattered, God’s plan is NOT.

      Let me encourage you to just focus on today. Literally, take one day at a time. We have seen such tremendous improvement in Lira just by meeting her needs and encouraging her social growth one day at a time. Also, remember that even though Autism might be foreign to you, you still know your child better than anyone else. I knew what Lira needed and when I was not seeing her served by professionals in a way that I thought would work, I had to step in.

      Please know that I am praying for you.

  4. Becky Thomas says:

    I guess I have a different view. My son was diagnosed a little over a year ago. He’s come a long way. I believe my son was a gift from God. And I don’t mean just the child but the autism as well. I’ve learned so much from him it’s unreal. I’ve learned patience and gratitude. I’ve been beyond my own personal breaking limit so many times I’ve lost count. I’ve redefined my parenting style over and over. I’ve cried and screamed and cried again. But I’m beginning to realize that God is using this to lead me to the person I’ve always knew I could be. Thanks to Him, nothing can get me down, absolutely nothing. I can and will rise above. Whatever God has in store for my son, I’m ready. I’ve not only read the promises I’ve LIVED them!
    It has been and continues to be an amazing journey. I wouldn’t have missed it for all the “normal” children in the world!

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