Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Abby's Map

I'm sure that some of my readers out there are curious as to what high-functioning Autistic even means. Some days, I wonder myself. Ha! So far what I've come to is that at times Abby seems totally typical. She will speak clearly, concisely and intelligently and we'll wonder, "Is she even Autistic? Am I raising her to think she has something that she doesn't?" And some of Abby's grandparents have expressed some similar concerns. I think it's valid to wonder. And even though I live with her daily and have been to the Parent/Teacher conferences enough to know that we're pretty much in agreement that she is somewhere on that broad spectrum of Autism, the line between typical and high-functioning Autism can be a bit blurry.

I had forgotten about this video. I recorded it a couple of months ago. I recently watched it again and found it interesting how it was such a good example of the tics that ARE Abby's Autism. This is a great example of what it's like when Abby's is "ASD-ing out" as I've begun to think of it. Much of the time she behaves very much like a typical 4 year old, but at times like this, she is definitely a kid who lands on the Autism Spectrum. She loves this map and often can point to many different States after being asked only once and can even tell you who in our family lives where, all without the various noises and hand tics.

She kind of pulls it together in the end, though I still have no idea what she is talking about at 1:55, something being raunchy? I don't know. But what makes this video such a great example is that it shows how she flows from typical to autistic behavior. And some days are better than others. Some days, the tics don't seem to affect her hardly at all. Other days, she seems consumed by them, finds it hard to communicate effectively and those are the days we experience more screams and whines.

Hope you are all remembering to take time to enjoy your days as we approach the busy holiday season. I am so swamped with homework and feeling so overwhelmed, but I'm trying to take time to enjoy my kids each day and to do something I enjoy. Yesterday I finished off the chalkboard I created on one of the cabinets in our kitchen. I get so much satisfaction from finishing these projects. Today, I am going to finish painting the living room walls and the bulkhead in the kitchen... and do a ton of homework. I hope. *fingers crossed*


Kerri said...

I know exactly how you feel with regards to questioning Abby's diagnosis. I've felt the same about Emily. I know it's correct, but some days I feel like maybe it's gone away, but I know that's not true. I'm OK with it though because I love my girl just the way she is as I know you do too. Happy Thanksgiving!

p.s. - My kids agree, Don't mess with Texas!

My name is Erin. said...

Thanks, Kerri! Happy Thanksgiving to you, too.

It's a fine line between accepting our girls as they are and striving for breakthroughs. For me, I will always accept Abby just as she is today, but we'll never stop working toward and hoping for constant improvements.

Dani G said...

I'm working so hard for my kid, and I see breakthroughs all the time. Looking back at old videos or pictures brings me the most encouragement. Seeing where she was, how far she's come, etc. I rarely question the dx, but it happens. Last week she had such an amazing session with speech/psychology that the doc told me he was even confused! It's such a roller coaster of ups and downs and things can change on a dime.
Interesting watching this video. She would seem so typical to the untrained eye. It's only because we KNOW that we know. Also, I loved hearing your voice!!!