A few people ask me how did you know Z was different and when did you know.
Looking back the ‘signs’ were there from only a couple of weeks old. The same song on repeat to go to sleep. We never had a problem with sleeping. he was a good baby, again another ‘sign’. As he was getting older by a few months it was the sitting on your lap to go to sleep or his swing, he loved his swing, and the car. Again, looking back was he sensory seeking from a very young age? He never really liked to be cwtched to sleep. On his terms!
When I say to people he could do a shape sorter very well at around five – six months, at the time I would just be looked at as if yea, whatever, after the asd diagnoses I often get, my son too! Jigsaws was another, he was matching animal one piece jigsaws around eight months old, doing ten piece joined puzzles young. At not even two he could do a twenty four piece puzzle very quickly.
He never used the furniture to get about or any walking toys, just after one he just got up and ran, he was never slow and just went through evething, wouldn’t have any awareness of there’s objects or people there.
He would be the only one in a soft play place just running with two of the same colour balls, again he was just gone one. He loved to match the same colours, or same objects.
He never pointed to get his needs across, he still don’t point, he can’t follow a point. Along side not following a point he wouldn’t go get anything asked of him. At that typical toddler stage, oh go get the ball, nothing, again still not quite there with that, sometimes he will but not often.
The fussy eating came later, when he was weaned he would eat anything, except pasta, he was sick just after his first birthday and after that his diet was very limited. But he did like sand!
Words, no babbling and no copying was a big ‘something’ isn’t quite right, most one year olds copy ‘ uh oh’, Z didn’t. He didn’t really play ‘peek a boo’ like most babies / toddlers, he would sometimes laugh at you but wouldn’t initatiate a game of peek a boo.
Round things, Z was fascinated with round things, wheels were a big one, at a park the first thing he would go to would be the roundabout, he would carry two of the same coloured balls about. He would spin pram wheels, he would spin toy car wheels.
Lines! This he’s always done, we’ve always had lines, of ducks, blocks, you name it he lined them!
T.v shows on repeat, his first favourite program was Henry hugglemonster and he would watch it all day, followed quickly by Winnie the Pooh, he still loves Winnie the Pooh.
When I bought him his own iPad, he quickly learnt how to work it, you tube and searching for what he wanted to watch. People would say how clever he was.
Clever! He’s always been very clever, he’s very visual so will take things in and store them for when he needs them.
Social. Now this was a big one. We could be in play groups and he would just run up and down, never really took any notice of other children, to him he was there on his own. He loved the signing time, but he’s always loved songs. He didn’t look at the same children and try and chat to them, or follow them, or even chase them like you see two year olds do. He never paralleled play, he done what he wanted to.
Now at three he’s getting there, he’s babbling like a one year old, he’s trying to get his point across to you, he’s starting to listen to simple commands, he’s trying very hard. He will watch E, he will see what she’s doing, sometimes he’ll go and look, he’s very loving towards her and baby T, he tries to give baby T his dummy and lots of kisses! He allows E to kiss him, and will catch her hand. So yes he’s making lovely progress.
Don’t forget some children like to do these things and there isn’t anything wrong, so please don’t read this and march your child off to docs saying they have autism! This was just how I knew Z was different.
There were things he didn’t do, that are pointers for asd like throw things, again this is a ‘new’ skill! He was never really distructive, again this is a lovely new skill! Each child is different even with children with asd, but each one is unique and I have to say lush!