I went to a great meeting yesterday morning of very inspired moms. Wow. I was definitely the rookie autism mom of the group. They were all well versed in umpteen autism therapies. I can’t even begin to explain how overwhelming this was. First of all, I feel guilty sometimes that we didn’t get Oliver an early diagnosis, or atleast involved in different therapies to start with. Then, I still keep on glancing at that white autism speaks first 100 days folder that is staring at me from the shelf with a huge layer of dust on it…fearful of being touched. Felt a bit like a fish out of water at first, but then I asked a few (stupid) basic questions and the pace slowed down. Whew. I hope I didn’t frustrate them with my newness of this all. They are a wicked smart and very inspired bunch. I’m superbly impressed by their dedication to their families and to their vision of autism in their lives. I had heard a lot of the therapies that they were talking about in theory, so it was fascinating to hear what really works for some, and not so much for others. The group of doctors that they knew, the referrals, the therapists, the therapies, the supplements, the culmination of years of experience and a gazillion hours of studying…and they were so willing to share it with me. Thank you, MOCHA moms! Woo hoo!!!
I learned a new term today. ‘neuro – immunologically impaired’. If I’m getting this correctly, the belief here is that because of a variety of factors (predisposed genetic factors, mercury poisoning, viral infections from MMR, overabundance of yeast in the gut, over-reaction to antibiotics, food allergies/intolerances, lack of certain nutrients, and a compromised immune system) that our children are outwardly displaying autism, but the problem is more internal. Unless the internal self is sorted out first, the external cannot be helped as much. I get that. That jives with me. Now that I’m understanding the concepts, my question is where to start? It is apparent to me in the past 9 months of living as a mom of a diagnosed child with autism, that each child is truly unique. Each child has different symptoms. Therefore, I think it’s best to continue with the testing. Establishing a baseline. The tests that interest me most are the ones that show the possibility of leaky gut, as well as the heavy metal contaminants. And then to find a DAN! (Defeat Autism Now!) doctor. I think that I may have found one. Alot of them see one in Oregon. I think that we’ll try local first and see how this goes. This is just the beginning of this research. More to come.
On a different note, I loved the episode of Glee this week. The character, Artie, who is a paraplegic in a wheelchair, had a daydream that was amazing. He walked out of his wheelchair, cured in a single day of whatever ailed him, and started dancing to Men Without Hat’s ‘Safety Dance’. Remember that song and dance?! Everyone in the mall either joined him or cheered him on. The dance itself was like ‘Safety Dance’ meets ‘Thriller’. It was fun to watch. But, then he realizes that it was just a dream, and his girlfriend handed him a mall pretzel and wheeled him away. What I loved about this scene and what stuck with me the most was that as she was wheeling him away, he said to her, ‘you know I’m going to dance again’, smiling. She said, ‘I know you are’. I think that Oliver, when he is stuck in a trance like state is envisioning himself breaking free of his stuck state, interacting with the world differently. Whether it be dancing to ‘Safety Dance’ in a big mall with friends, or walking along the beach by himself… My job as his mom is to try and find what isolates him, and the keys that may or may not unlock the autism.