I’m not one to get caught up in semantics.
It doesn’t offend me if someone says Cuyler is autistic as opposed to saying he has autism. That’s the PC way to say it but I’ve never really been much into PC.
A lot of people who have kids on the spectrum refer to kids not on the spectrum as NT or “neuro-typical” or “normal” (accompanied with finger quotes).
I’ll use either of these terms. Sometimes I just say typical. Sometimes I just say normal.
I often wonder if I am the only mom of a child with autism who every now and then fantastizes that the autism is gone and that their child is “normal”
The sensory issues are gone. The dietary issues are gone. The social deficiencies are gone.
That he’ll drive. He’ll date. He’ll go to parties. He’ll get a job, get married, live independently.
I hope all of those things for him – I really do.
The receptionist winked at me, smiled and said “How are you Rick?” He replied that he was good and asked where Brenda was – she cleans his teeth.
Brenda came and asked if he was ready. “Yep!” and walked back with her. And left me there.
I was able to see into the room from where I was sitting. Cuyler hopped up in the chair, got the bib and sunglasses on and Brenda reclined the chair. She checked his teeth.
Cleaned them with the scaler. Polished them. Flossed them. The dentist came in to do her exam. She asked him several questions. He answered all of them (correctly!). She told me his teeth look great – no cavities! and left.
Brenda gave him a flouride treatment.
I bolded all of the above because that has never happened before. So easily. Without fidgeting or struggles or a little bit of crying. At the end – Brenda and I just looked at each other, we both said “Wow!” and then looked away. I think we were both about to cry.
1) How the eff does the kid who refused a toothbrush near his mouth for the first 4 years of his life have no cavities (and the other 2 do)??
2) Patience always pays off and baby steps will get you everywhere.
Cuyler is 8. He went to the dentist for the first time about 2years ago.
He wouldn’t sit in the chair. And all she was able to do was count his teeth. The next time she brushed them a little. The next time she did a flouride treatment. The last time he got in the chair (without reclining) and she counted brushed and flouride. This time she did everything that she would do for a normal cleaning. No modifications, nothing left out.
Just a normal visit to the dentist.
I suppose if we hadn’t gone through all we have been through to get to that day I wouldn’t have been able to feel the joy of such a normal experience for him.
Just like the rainbow.
I guess that’s why I always say that life without autism might be easier, but I doubt it would be better.