This post has been a long time coming. Every night before I go to bed, I think about putting my pen to paper, or let’s be honest, my fingers to the keyboard, to type this out. I think about where we’ve been and where we are now. And honestly, I’m blown away. There were times where I thought we may never hear Rhett say more than one word. There are times I thought he may never comprehend what we’re saying to him. There are plenty of times I silently cried myself to sleep reminiscing on what I thought life would look like for Rhett vs. the reality of what it was. I’ll be honest, that is the hardest part for me. Sometimes I still get caught up in that. What will the future look like for him? What will school look like for him? But I’m trying to let go of that. Let’s just start at where we are now.
Rhett visits a developmental pediatrician next week. I’m not a specialist of anything in any way, shape, or form; but I am prepared for an Autism diagnosis. Sometimes it’s hard for me to see the improvements because I see his differences from the other children in his class and just the difference between where he currently is and where his siblings were at this age. When he is really excited, he flaps his arms, he doesn’t have the greatest eye contact, he can’t jump yet, he still often prefers to play alone, he doesn’t understand sitting still for two seconds to take a picture, he often runs off (especially at Mason’s baseball games this year) unaware of safety, he sometimes bites friends when they are invading his space, he doesn’t speak in sentences, he can’t always tell me what he wants or what he needs. But within all of that he’s grown leaps and bounds. I don’t just mean physically (but, yes, he’s gotten huge!), but emotionally, academically, and socially. He’s putting together two words, occasionally three. He’s starting to understand emotions, when friends are upset, etc. He’s playing with friends! Not just next to or around, really playing with them. It doesn’t last forever, sometimes just a few minutes, but it’s something. He’s going pee on the potty! I used to ask him and he’s bluntly said “no” every single time. But now he’s sitting on the potty and making himself pee almost every time. We’re still working on this really hard, but he’s impressing us. He has adjusted beautifully to moving into our new home. The change has actually been a breeze on him.
There are still days that are hard for me. Days where I compare him to typically developing children and blame myself for the delays. What did I do? That crosses my mind a lot and probably will continue to do so. But God I love that little man so much. He’s always happy, always loving, always smiling. I’d do anything for him. I’m so glad God surprised us with him. He is literally everything I needed.