Sebastian's Dream

Exploring & Discovering The Beauty In Autism and the Autistic Child


view:  full / summary

With Each Passing Day.....

Posted on August 7, 2017 at 5:00 PM Comments comments (2)

With each passing day, Sebastian grew and got cuter and cuter! He started walking at 9 months which was great. It was super funny how it happened. One Saturday, Sebastian and his friend Katie were at the children's museum and at the time, Sebastian was still in the crawling stage. As Katie ran around the museum, Sebastian crawled through several spaces. At one poiint Katie looked down at Sebastian crawling as if to say, "Why are you down there? It's a whole different world up here!" You know the way children communicate in only a gesture, facial expression or words only they can understand. Sebastian looked at Katie and then at us, his parents, as if to say, "Why can't I do that?" After we left the children's museum and got home, Sebastian went straight over to the TV stand and stood up. Within days he was walking, within weeks he was running. That was the first time we noticed his huge competitive nature, something he comes by naturally, his father and I compete all the time. LOL! 

We were excited parents when Sebastian started walking. It was then we knew that he would be reaching new milestones fairly soon. By the time Sebastian was 2 he was speaking words and eating different foods and appeared to be on track for meeting his milestones. He was eating chicken, tacos, carrots, oatmeal, applesauce, biscuits and a variety of other foods. Until one day it all came to an end. I'm not sure why, how or when it actually happened, but it happened. 

All of a sudden the progress Sebastian was making came to a screeching halt. He stopped talking and eating all at the same time. I went into instant denial. My mother in law asked me one day if I thought Sebastian might have autism. She said he was displaying some of the signs of a child who may be on the spectrum. Again, instant denial. Right away, I said to her that was not possible, Sebastian just has a speech delay. It was inconceivable to me that this beautiful little boy that I had so many hopes and dreams for was suddenly stricken with something I knew nothing about. How could this be happening? Why was this happening? No, this was not really real. In my mind what she was saying was like listening to Charlie Brown's teacher, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, and then I just shut down. I went on with everyday like things were normal with Sebastian. I refused to contact early intervention to have him evaluated, even though his pediatrician recommended I do so. She suggested it based off these forms that they give you concerning early intervention and milestones according to age. Your responses to the milestones and observations from the doctor, are used as idicators to determine if there may be some developmental concerns for your child.

Denial still. I didn't care what anyone had to say! My perfect boy was still going to Lab School, Walter Peyton or Latin and then entering the Ivy Leagues. Nothing was going to change that! I remained in denial until I got sick of being told I needed to have Sebastian evaluated. Reluctantly, I relented and had the early intervention team come out and evaluate him. Three therapists and a case manager came out to evaluate my boy. As they talked, I resented every word they spoke. They were liars and did not know what they were talking about. There was nothing wrong with my son and I wished everyone would stop telling me that he might be on the autism spectrum. It was not true! Don't misunderstand me, the early intervention team was professional and nice, but I just could not believe what they were trying to tell me about my child. They sat with Sebastian and tried to play with him using certain toys to see if he would engage and play with the toy "correctly". They tried to get him to say words and in some instances just merely observed his behavior. When they were done, they wrote their reports and told me they would provide there analysis and recommendations. When they concluded that they believed he was somewhere on the autism spectrum, I began to cry. They consoled me and told me that I was not alone and there were support groups that I could join, but I was not hearing any of it at the time because no matter what "they" said, all Sebastian had was a speech delay. 

I had Sebastian evaluated a second time at the University of Chicago at the urging of his pediatrician. I expressed my concerns because as a parent, I feel that therapist and the clinicians meeting with your child for a couple of hours cannot truly determine your child's capabilities. It infuriated me to think that someone was analyzing my child and making life decisions on how his life would be based on a 2 hour evaluation. Really! Nonetheless, I went to the evaluation and sat through another grueling 2 hours of therapists playing with and evaluating my son, only to get the same submation, which I still denied was real or true. Sebastian only had a speech delay. 

The third time was the charm, I had early intervention come out again when Sebastian turned 3 and endured the same process, only to be told the same things again. At this point, I knew it was time to give up the ghost. I cried as I looked at my baby. I thought about all the things he would "not" be able to do. I thought about how he might be teased and bullied from information and research I had read about children with special needs. Through my eyes his life was over before it had even began, but was it his life that was over or was it my life expectations for him that were over? 

From the Beginning....

Posted on July 23, 2017 at 5:35 PM Comments comments (0)

From the moment of conception, I had Sebastian's entire life planned from beginning to end. He was going to go to Gymboree for socialization, University of Chicago Lab School for his first 9 years, Walter Payton High School and then off to the Ivy Leagues, maybe even Oxford! I had his name picked out on a trip to breakfast! My husband, Dennis and I were on our way to Cracker Barrel when we were discussing names. We discussrd several options, when he discovered I only had boy names. He asked me, "What if its a girl?" I told him it was not and that there was no doubt in my mind that we were having a boy, therefore, I had no girl names in mind. 

I always loved the name Sebastian. Not sure why, but it just had something about it. So as we were driving, I suggested the name to my hubby and we started to look up what the name meant. The one thing we did not want was to give our child a meaningless name to carry around forever. Sebastian means venerable, revered, one who is deeply respected and/or admired. Sebastian was also a martyred 3rd century Roman soldier made into a saint. How could you not love a name like that. As for the middle name, I tossed around a few, but then Xavier just seemed to flow with Sebastian and knowing that Xavier meant savior did'nt hurt. So by 9:00 AM on a Saturday morning, I had Sebastian Xavier Davis's name and life all figured out. 

Sebastian had to be the easiest pregnancy on the planet! He hardly moved my entire pregnancy. I had no crazy cravings, no weird or wild urges, no sleepless nights, minimal morning sickness (which for me occurred at night) and absolutely no pain. He was conceived at the best time of the year, I found out I was pregnant in August and he was born in April, so I spent very little time in the summer heat. The biggest issues surrounding my pregnancy were my age, gestational diabetes, high blood pressure and the fact that I would have to deliver by Cesarian, otherwise absolutely no concerns. Believe it or not, there were upsides to those issues. I was forced to change my diet, because I am the worlds worst junk food junky, which helped me to lose weight during my pregnancy. With a Cesarian, I knew that I would not be in as much pain as I would if I were delivering vaginally. 

I remember the day Sebastian was born like it was yesterday. I woke up on Sunday, April 18, 2010 at 6:30 AM as usual. I remember watching RV with Robin Williams and thinking as I looked over at my husband, as soon as you wake up, you're going to get me a Gyro. With that in mind, I began to plan out the rest of my day. I was going to go downstairs, do a load of laundry and let the dog out, although not specifically in that order. Well what do you know, that's not how my day went at all. I went downstairs, let the dog out, and went to start a load of laundry. As I was coming up the stairs, my mom asked if I was alright. I told her I was but that I just kept going to the bathroom on myself. She immediately said, "Maybe you should contact the doctor." I contacted Rush University Medical and the doctor was paged. He called me back and I described what I was feeling. I thought he would tell me to just continue my pregnancy on bed rest for the remaining three week, which is when Sebastian was actually due. Once again, that's not how it happened, the doctor suggested I come in. The entire time, I'm still not feeling any pain. I go and pack a bag and off my husband, my mom and myself go to the hospital. I get checked in and the nurses place me in a holding area in labor and delivery. Still feeling no pain. 

As I lay there silently waiting for my turn at bat, the woman next to me was screaming as if her life were ending. When I did make a sound, it was only a slight grunt. The nurse then asked me if everything was alright. I told her it was, that the baby just shifted, however I keep going to the bathroom on  myself. She reached under to check for dialation and said, "Oh no! This baby is coming now!" I was rushed to another room where I waited for a delivery room to become available. Once in the delivery room, I was shot 4 times with the numbing medication, because of my high tolerence to medication and was ready for Sebastian's arrival. 

I was awake the entire time, with my head constantly tilted to the left because I kept throwing up off of the medication, but after what felt like an eternity, at 2:32 PM, the love of my life was welcomed into the world. What was to follow would almost take the life out of me.......