Just another Minnesota Mom blog.

What day is it again?

Posted: April 16th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Autism | Tags: Autism, Autism Awareness Month, Birth to Three, Early Evaluation, Kids, Lincolnton and Wy, Mom stuff | 9 Comments »

So I’ve failed at blogging every day during Autism Awareness Month.  I don’t know what it is about setting a goal to blog for 30 days, but it seems unattainable once you start.  Now if I HADN’T set that goal…I’d probably have blogged every day and sometimes twice.  That’s just how it goes.

So I’m calling off the every day thing and we’ll see what happens from here on out.

Janine asked in my comments what some of the early signs are- what do you look for?

This is kind of tricky, because early on, so much of it is easily explained away.  Babies develop at different paces, it’s just how it is.  I think a lot of it is going with your gut.  If you start to notice these things, even if no one else seems to notice them or is worried about them, look into getting an evaluation or really stress your worries with your pediatrician. 

The Red Flags:

  • No big smiles or other warm, joyful expressions by six months or thereafter
  • No back-and-forth sharing of sounds, smiles, or other facial expressions by nine months or thereafter
  • No babbling by 12 months
  • No back-and-forth gestures, such as pointing, showing, reaching, or waving by 12 months
  • No words by 16 months
  • No two-word meaningful phrases (without imitating or repeating) by 24 months
  • Any loss of speech or babbling or social skills at any age
    (From Autism Speaks)

For us the biggest thing was the loss of speech.  Once we were in our evaluation it because very clear that there were other things- no back and forth gestures, no pointing, showing and reaching were a few big ones.  They didn’t “play” with their toys, they carried them around.  We had smiles and babbling, we had words at one point.  Sometimes it’s just one thing on this list that makes you wonder a little bit. 

It is always worth digging into.  If your child is showing ANY of these signs you should be asking for an immediate evaluation.

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9 Comments on “What day is it again?”

  1. 1 Janine said at 3:43 am on April 17th, 2011:

    Thank you for this post! The scariest to me is the idea of regression, linked to autism or not.

    I think that following your gut is important with everything, especially when it has to do with your family's health.

    I love your blog because I think it really gives people hope with your beautiful boys. 🙂

  2. 2 erinclot said at 11:47 pm on April 17th, 2011:

    Yes, regression is scary. But, even that is *easy* to overlook with how kids have words and then pick up new words and stop usuing their "old" words. It just makes you crazy!

    I am huge on following your gut. In social media you tend to get a lot of "it's nothing , don't worry about it" feedback when you really want someone to say "hey, I think you're making the right decision getting this looked at". Pediatricians spend such a miniscule amount of time with our kids so unless it's really pushed hard, they may play the wait and see game too.

    It's HARD being a Mom!

  3. 3 Janine said at 4:03 am on April 18th, 2011:

    I think partly people want to tell you what you want to hear and make you happy. And a lot of time symptoms just don't look the same on paper as they jump out at you in person and in your gut.

    I don't talk about it a lot but my husband was diagnosed with kidney disease two years ago. He is on dialysis and it definitely changed our lives. When he started to get sick his doctor kept saying it was this and that, no big deal, until the situation completely blew up. It was that experience that really drove it home that your instincts regarding the people you love are usually on point no matter what anyone else says. I know a lot of people who never question what their doctor/s say, but once you've been there you know better.

    (On a related note, you are a rockstar for being so open with your story and struggles. I cannot find the strength to get that personal on my blog.)

    The autism statistics are insane but it seems like no one is even aware of it. I had no idea how common an autism diagnosis is until I was already pregnant and starting following mama blogs, etc. Usually I find "awareness" months/events to be silly and overkill but this one really is necessary.

  4. 4 erinclot said at 8:52 am on April 18th, 2011:

    Yes! I think it's so much easier to just hope it's fine and you are over-reacting but if something *is* wrong you just think of all that time you lost by being placated. We always want everyone to be fine and happy.

    That's horrible what happened with your husband. It's so hard to know when to push back. When my sister went to Urgent Care in Januarty when she first got sick they told her it was the flu, sent her home. She asked if it was meningitis, my Mom asked if it could be meningitis and they were both totally condescended to and sent homw with some Advil. The following week she was admitted to the hospital with Meningitis- for a MONTH. all they had to say was we can't test for that here go to the ER. But they sent her home and it got really really bad for awhile.

    This is why they tell us to Advocate- you just don't really know what that means until you've been through it.

  5. 5 erinclot said at 8:52 am on April 18th, 2011:

    I am totally not a rockstar. I'll probably be arrested by the Mom Blog police for sharing too much and ruining my kids. It helps me to process things though, and stay a bit sane. I haven't had a totaly breakdown yet- I've been close, but I think I'm better if I talk about it.

    I didn't know anything about autism until we started wondering. And I didn't really know much past the 1 in 110 statistic until after the diagnosis. It's one of those things I assumed happened to "other" people. I thought twins only happened to "other" people too, but here we are. I suppose I should be open to any and all things by now! Life has a way of throwing you curve balls!

  6. 6 Janine said at 12:35 pm on April 18th, 2011:

    Yep, I feel ya. I remember looking at symptoms and being like, "Oh, well that's too serious, that can't be it". Pathetic fallacy I believe it's called. And when it comes to medical issues, it usually isn't as bad as you think, so it makes sense not to assume the sky is falling. You also want to believe that doctors are right and you don't want to be THAT patient… I didn't want to be THAT girlfriend at that time… It's tricky but I'm glad I went through that before being a mom because I now trust my own intuition above most else!

    OK that was my last comment, I swear. Probably.

  7. 7 erinclot said at 1:39 pm on April 19th, 2011:

    I will stop replying 😉

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  9. 9 The Slacker Mom Tells All! | The Slacker Mom said at 10:07 pm on August 28th, 2011:

    […] actual diagnosis (I looked once and couldn’t find it and would love to read it) Here are the Red Flags for Autism from the CDC. This is what happened the day we had our first speech evaluation through Early […]


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