After the hellish doctors visit last week I was still reeling when a friend told me she knew a specialist who bulk billed autism spectrum testing and if I wanted she would call and see what they could do. At 9:30pm last night a flurry of emails started coming in. The specialist could see me. At 9am…in a clinic 2 hours away. She would bulk bill. Did I want the appointment?
So we woke our daughter at 6am. She was super cranky. She is a creature of habit and any break in routine normally requires much notice and plenty of warnings in the lead up. I had gotten hardly any sleep. The whole way there I was a bundle of nerves. While you may think I am crazy (and I probably am) if she was considered by the specialist to not have an ASD then we were back to square one.
First she spent a good 30 minutes with me solo – wanting to know everything from pregnancy to now. I really expected to cry. Bringing up memories of the past struggles we had was tough. I remember days when I thought my beautiful daughter would never know what friends were or be able to hold down a job or school. I remember the strain it put on our marriage as I defended her right to be her and he desperately wanted to “fix” her.
After that she talked to her and then did some ASD testing (I think it was called the ADOS test) and then it was back to me to deliver the verdict.
Aspergers (mild) and likely high IQ/Giftedness.
And just like that ten years of stress and wondering and confusion and the does she/doesn’t she was over.
And for those of you wondering how we feel…relieved. Not just because we were right in our thinking, but because we finally have an answer that explains everything. An answer that will help us to tailor our parenting and her education to her unique abilities, strengths and weaknesses. To be able to give her an answer as to why she is “different”.
Now we can move on.