Monday, March 27, 2006

Asperger Syndrome

(Spaghetti dinners are the messiest! Chaz is the second child from the right with the big spaghetti smile.)

I wanted to journal about my son Chaz because it might help someone out there who is going through the same thing with their son. Also, I would like to give a Christian perspective on my thoughts. For four years I have struggled with my son and being that he was my first, I thought his behaviors were typical for a boy and I overlooked them. (And disciplined a lot). I realize that there will always be someone who thinks they're a doctor and that they know the diagnosis but I just label that as "ignorance" and walk away. They have not lived with my son on a day to day basis. However, I have many people supporting me including my pastor so I feel I can move forward and help Chaz with great confidence.

First off, my 5 year old son was diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome (and ADHD) last week. Another way of putting it is "Autistic-like qualities with developed speech. They can seem like any other kid in some ways but have problems in the social arena. There is a long list of what Asperger is and they usually have to meet all of them to be diagnosed with it.

I will not be despaired because I know that God made Chaz and He trusted Chaz to our care knowing this is who Chaz is. Aspergers can be a gift and a curse at the same time. Chaz tends to have "sensory overload". Sometimes he can handle noise, other times he'll cover his ears and start to get really upset and panic. He is literal about things that you say often times. Chaz is very aggressive and is seen as a bully at times. He can go from completely calm to very angry in 5 seconds flat. Certain clothing bother him and certain types of shirts drive him nuts. He has to have things lined up and will follow patterns. Usually people can mistake his behaviors as a result of "improper parenting" because his behaviors can look like a boy who is just rude or aggressive.

The bright side, is often these kids grow up very bright and intellegent. Einstein was thought to have had Aspergers and some other successful people. They have one particular area of focus and often will only speak of that and can seem obsessed about that subject. I am grateful that Chaz I am grateful that Chaz is high functioning.

  Aspergers is a neurological disorder and not a cause of something. It is not curable but I do believe that God can heal him. Most importantly, I know God has a special plan for Chaz. I only feel blessed that God would entrust Chaz into my hands to take him on this journey. I hope my journals will help anyone else who is facing a difficult time in their lives. Yes, it has been an unbelievably hard 4 years for us, but it is God who gives us the strength. I pray that you too would look to God for answers and not despair. The world will tell you that all hope is lost, but God gives life and it more abundantly if you seek him and make him your Lord and Savior. I know that God didn't bring us this far just to leave us. He has a special plan.

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