My son read a book this week… all by himself. He is five, almost 6 years old. Nothing unusual, right? Most kids learn to read simple books about this age…. Yes, but most kids don’t have autism. Most kids weren’t relying on a Picture Exchange Communication System at age 3 or a speech device at age 4.
Most parents aren’t told by speech therapists that your son may never learn to talk. Most aren’t told by doctors that there is just no way to know what your child will be able to do. Hope for the best, prepare for the worst. Don’t expect anything “normal.” Most parents haven’t spent years telling doctors and therapists and educators, “Yes, he can.”
This week, he read a book. He spoke the words. He recognized them in print. He turned the pages and led his finger along the words. To those who thought he couldn’t…… to those who thought he was bound by a diagnosis, to those who thought his tests scores were much too low, to those who said “just worry about basic life skills, not things like reading and writing”……. You can take your words of “wisdom” and shove it. I would love to go back to each and every one of you and scream it once again…..”YES, HE CAN!” He still has a long way to go, but he is strong, his father and I are strong, and this is only the beginning ……“Yes, he can!”