I’ll never forget the day that I got the diagnosis that my beautiful two and a half year old boy had autism. I just thought that I was going to hear that he had some language delay and we would get a speech therapist and all be be fine. I didn’t even think my husband had to go with me for the evaluation through early intervention.

At the end of a day long evaluation the psychiatrist looked at him sitting on the floor and then at me and said “ I know what he has. I know. He’s got PDD.”

“What’s PDD ?” I said. “ Well, it’s on a spectrum of autism,” he said.

My stomach dropped and I felt light headed. He left the room and the rest of the therapists tried to pick up the pieces of the emotional mess he left behind.

It has been a marathon since that day, 17 years ago. I want to write to tell new mothers that having a child with autism is a major challenge to your patience, your creativity , your drive and your warrior instincts. The happiness of your child depends upon your support and your advocacy because no one but you knows how great is your child’s potential.

Challenge anything which is for special needs only and don’t accept no. Your child will surprise everyone when given the chance and when expected to succeed.

I write now because I’ve learned so much and want to spare parents from some of the hard lessons learned. I write now because I am insanely proud of my son and look forward to seeing what else he will do to change the beliefs about autism.