I research for a living.
Okay, so I decided that I’m dedicating this week to researching all the services in the area that I can find and then visiting these centers and people. I might not be an expert in the field of autism, but I’m pretty sure I will be able to see if someone will be “good” with Joe.
I added Brown’s suggestions to my list and I have made appointments first with ABA centers. It is a bit worrying though, because when I started googling about ABA there were many articles that said it wasn’t good for kids on the spectrum. Many of these people were adults with an ASD diagnosis that are now dedicating their lives to write articles, it seems?! I also requested to be part of a group on Facebook: “Ask me, I’m autistic”. I have read through some of the posts in this group, but again – it seems that ABA is not the favorite. What do I do though? What else can I try to help Joe? Is there even an alternative to ABA?
I think for my own sanity I am going to have to stop asking questions and actually just meet people in this field and follow my gut. So, first thing first – Ryan is joining me to visit two ABA centers. One is near to me and the other is a bit out of the way, but I liked their website. The photos all seemed like nature was surrounding their center and Joe LOVES being in nature. The one nearby did not have photos of the premises, only testimonials of parents stating that their child has made “progress”. I am seriously torn in two if I should be jumping on this bandwagon that Joe “only has a few years left to really show progress” and “early intervention is key”. I have never been a person (and now Mom) that is focused on what someone “produces”. I am far more interested in the story and experience that brought you to different destinations in your life – wherever that might be.
When I did stories on site, I would have to go to war zones and find refugees to interview. My mission was to bring humility to areas where people return to their primal instincts – food, safety, shelter, sleep. Most people tell me that my job was extremely tough, but honestly I loved it – it was so natural to find beautiful stories in these extreme circumstances. For one, when you are surrounded by war and experience traumatic events on a daily basis, the touch of another human beings hand, the minutes they offer to listen to your childhood or even just the glance of hope and love can evolve into a beautiful piece of writing that opens everyone’s hearts. That was my mission and I was good at it. Maybe I need to apply my strengths now in my own life and be the one holding Joe’s hand, guiding him with love and finding what he truly needs in his life.
Yes, I want to be that person again. I am that person. Good night x