As a parent to a daughter with Autism, I can tell you that I am always answering questions. Whether its face to face or on paper. From filling out paperwork or going to evals and IEP meetings I am always having to explain Avery’s history, discuss things that happen at school and talk about how we can get her to a place where she can communicate better. To be honest it’s exhausting and at times upsetting. It seems like everything is mostly focused on the negative. That makes it hard to remember the positive. Usually, after meetings or filling out mounds of paperwork I am so sad. I know the type of person that Avery is and I want the world to see all of the things that I know she can do. But every piece of paperwork and meeting involves how behind she is or how she doesn’t communicate correctly.
At meetings I always want to shout “But wait, she has made great strides since last year!” or on paperwork for therapies I always want to write “Just wait until you meet her because you will see the sweet little girl that she is.” I totally get that Avery doesn’t always communicate her thoughts and feelings appropriately. But that is why we are always seeking the proper supports for her so that one day she can.
So, my new year’s resolution is to write down the positive. Write it down, that Avery loves school and has tons of friends. Write it down, that Avery is doing things now that before she started school she was not. Write it down, when Avery makes me laugh super hard because she has the best sense of humor. Write it down, when Avery eats a new food. When I say write it down, it’s not just for therapists and and support staff. It’s for me and for Avery. So, on those days when I feel frustrated or Avery feels down we can look at all of the positive. Because the positive in Avery’s life definitely outweighs the negative. She has come so far and there is so much more that she will do.