Read Stories of Success

Trisha’s Story

Benton County, MN

"I wouldn't change a thing about our journey. His success is my biggest motivation. He's what I live for."

Reid was born Aug 3, 2000 and was a happy, healthy baby boy. He was an easy baby, generally happy and content. After Reid's sister was born, I began to notice how differently she was developing than Reid. When Reid was three his behaviors started to escalate. He was having problems at daycare and I was receiving calls about his fighting and hitting. At first I thought it was basic sibling jealousy, I thought he was acting up because he had a new sibling to compete with. We tried behavior intervention strategies, employed a behavioral assessment team, enrolled him in Headstart and he attended a center daycare – we tried it all and still had struggles. To make matters worse, I was on the verge of losing my job because he was getting sent home every couple days from day care. It was rough.

At Reid's preschool screening, they requested to have him back for some specialized testing sessions. We went back three or four times where he was observed by the school psychologist, social worker, special educations teachers, etc. and assessed for a variety of things. His testing all came back "red flagged for autism."

When they shared his results with me, I felt so alone. What does this mean? Why did I get stuck with these issues? What do I do next? Who do I tell? Would he be treated different? I couldn't believe this. I felt worry, guilt, fatigue, anger, embarrassment and frustration. I wasn't sure I was going to make it.

Seven years ago we received Reid's diagnosis. If you would have told me the child I have today was the same child I cried so many nights over back then, I wouldn't believe you. Reid is doing amazing. He is mainstreamed almost 75% of his school day. His behaviors have decreased, his interests increased, and his peers accept him – he is a loving and fun kid!

Through being Reid's mom I have learned patience, creativity, stealth (sometimes juice isn't just juice!) and I know more about Thomas the Train than most, but the number one lesson I have learned is that I AM NOT ALONE! I have attended lots of training opportunities, I have done a lot of research and I have shared my story in an effort to connect with and encourage others in the same situation. I wouldn't change a thing about our journey. His success is my biggest motivation. He's what I live for.

Sauk Rapids, MN

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