It has been almost a month since I told you that I was hopeful. That was the first time in a long time that I had felt that way and it was an exhilarating sensation. All that excitement came from the mere possibility that V might get a spot in his big brother’s basis-gruppe, a special type of institution here in Denmark, consisting of a small group of 6 children, all diagnosed with autism that is supported by 3 or 4 preschool teachers. Although there was no guarantee for the spot at the time, I felt really optimistic that we would get it – so optimistic in fact, that I became a little afraid that I might be jinxing it!
Great news! We have officially been offered (and accepted) a spot for both boys in a kindergarten in Iceland that has excellent reputation for doing an outstanding job with autistic kids. And apparently, it is not just the reputation that is good since my husband, who is currently in Iceland, visited the kindergarten today and was tremendously impressed. Moreover, we have secured a place to live as well… in walking distance from the kindergarten. I am almost giddy with joy and relief!
Sometimes, when I look at my little V and listen to him babble incomprehensibly, sometimes even repeating the same babbling over and over again, I feel like he is actually saying something, that his babble actually entails some meaning in his own head. It even has the timbre of Icelandic, as his voice goes up and down at just the right places. It sounds like he is speaking. Sometimes, he even looks me directly in the eye, while using his hands as if he is trying to tell me something. The only thing missing are the actual words!
For the first time in a long time, I actually feel hopeful. And here is why…
Last week, our suspicion that V has autism, was confirmed. During that meeting, we reminded them that we were planning on moving to Iceland in a few months. They became a bit puzzled as if they had forgotten about that fact and one of them suggested that maybe the big coordination meeting, that was supposed to be held in about three weeks, should be canceled instead of wasting so many resources for such a short period of time. Fortunately, we had been prepared for the news of V being autistic because if we would have been in shock I am not sure we would have responded the way we did. Instead of numbly giving in and agreeing to the suggestion, both of us strongly objected the idea. We were not ready to wait a moment longer for our son to get sufficient help!
Recent statistics from the US show that 1 in every 110 children have autism. That is not a small number! Further, statistic over the past few years show that the number of cases are increasing – the odds are not getting any better. Thus it is important that people know the signs of autism in order to detect autism as soon as possible.