Being special

People often ask me how Charlie got his autism. People wonder if it was down to the MMR jab or the result of an accident or birth trauma. I don’t believe it was the mmr- a flawed piece of research has caused chaos and I suspect many a regretful parent – particularly in Wales! Charlie did have his MMR when he was 1 and to be fair I can see how people make this link…its a crucial point in a childs development. Its when their personalities are formed, baby babble and early communication begins and every day your child learns something new, soaking up info like a sponge. The lack of these things in Charlie became evident as he approached his 2nd birthday. He had been a completely ‘normal’ baby. Normal pregnancy, normal birth. He hit all his early milestones. He was my happy ‘beek a boo’ baby, easy to engage and giggled so hard it brought tears to his eyes.
It’s a classic trait of autism to present itself at around the age of 2. Normal development followed by regression. Charlie lost the words he had developed. The smiles and eye contact gone. He lost the ability to engage or communicate and a frustrated angry boy emerged.
Everyone at that time had an opinion or theory… ‘I’m keeping him the baby of the family’ ‘the others are talking for him’ ‘I need to take a firmer hand with him’ ‘its just the terrible twos’ – even my health visitor laughed at me “you don’t think he’s autistic do you?”
Over the past 13 years I have, during challenging times asked myself why. I have several theories but I always come back to the same conclusion… ‘Why’ doesn’t matter – there are lots of very clever people in this world that make it their life’s work to find the answer to that one. My point is, it won’t change who Charlie is. Charlie is special – a word we often think of as being a derogatory remark and even used in humour, a modern replacement for being ‘blonde’
But Charlie is special – special for being different, special for being gifted, and as his mum I consider myself special too. Perhaps even chosen. Chosen to be Charlie’s mum.

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