Autism Awareness Day! A little note about Autism and our lil’ man Logan!

Autism SpeaksMy name is Cathy Piso and I run Kids Vancouver.com. I wrote a letter to give to my son's preschool to let them know more about Autism due to it being Autism Awareness Day. I also wanted to let them know a bit more about my son, and thought I should also share on here as well.

Logan, my son, was diagnosed in December of 2012 with Autism. We realized about 2 and half years old  his speech was not increasing. He was sick many times with ear infections and sore throats from age 6 months until 2 and half years, so we assumed that he was behind due to all his sickness. All his other milestones were normal until then. When I asked my friends they told me, "don't worry Cathy, he is a boy, boys are late with talking!" When preschool came I really noticed how far he was behind and when I saw how he was at school he seemed so different. We questioned, could it be Autism? But when we looked it up, Logan didn't seem to have all the "symptoms".

 

But at school he was quiet, focused only on trains and/or cars and not socially aware of anyone in the room and very little eye contact. At home he played with many things, and gave us lots of eye contact and at that time had very little symptoms of an Autistic child. Also Logan is very affectionate with hugs and kisses and is so easy going and that made us think he was not. As months passed more symptoms appeared, such as hand flapping, which is a known trait of Autism. Other symptoms, eye contact decreased, also recently his anxiety had increased but this can be good as he is now more socially aware what is going around him. We have found also he no longer “lines up the cars” which is great and plays more with them.

Logan has quite the language surprisingly for a child with Autism. At school he talks very little, but at home he does way more talking, tons of labelled words, also quite a few sentences, but sometimes prompting is needed to help the words come out. My favorite is if I get hurt he asks “Momma are you okay?” Or “love you!”

Just a little about Logan. He is very sweet, he loves to cuddle and he loves to give kisses. He also is very easy going and happy. He does like to flap his hands or jump when he gets excited, just think when you get excited you like to scream, shout out in excitement or tell someone about your news, well this is his way of getting that energy out without using words.

He loves to play in sand and dirt, he loves trains, cars, jumping on the trampoline, playing with playdoh, catching bugs. He loves to chase & play with his sister, enjoys playing outside and he loves his teddy bear that he sleeps with at night and he also loves his Ipad and its amazing what he can do on it!

I think our house is just a little quieter than yours maybe in comparison to another 3 or 4 year old. To us he is “normal”, but he is our normal. I just wanted to share a little of his story as most people have different ideas of what Autism is, but the spectrum of Autism is so huge and not one is the same. I had no idea as well so I wanted to make you more aware.

Logan has just begun speech therapy, he is on week 3, and we are very optimistic and see tons of potential in our lil’ man. He currently has therapy 4 times a week for 2 hours each time. Also with his preschool teacher and Logan’s helper, we have a great team to help him succeed.

Autism is a long process to get diagnosed, most parents wait over a year to get their child diagnosed as they can't afford the private testing. We paid a private fee of $1,800, which was very expensive for us, but we went ahead with it as we knew then he would not wait any longer to get help and also to get the funding.

In BC if you receive an Austim diagnosis you receive $22,000 a year until age 6. For children over age 6, we receive up to $6,000. This may seem like a lot of money to you, but this money barely covers speech therapy, and most ASD (Autism) need help from many different types of Therapies such as Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy and more. Also a lot of parents try naturopath ways as well and that is not covered at all.

Autism is increasing more and more, I have heard 1 in 88 children, then more research said 1 in 77, and 2 days ago I have read 1 in 50 kids have Autism. Please become more aware about it, as most likely if your child does not have it, someone you know does.

Thank you for reading this letter and reading a little about him and learning a little about Autism.

Thanks,

Cathy Piso