One day when Sarah was a little girl she had yet another doctors appointment, she of course did not want to go but she did anyway because she thought the doctor would help her. She behaved really well in the office while she was being examined. When we got outside the door she just let all of her frustrations out. She planted herself on the ground and began the self-injurious behaviors and screaming to the top of her lungs. Of course the receptionist came out and told me that I was going to have to move and that Sarah was disturbing the other people in the building. I put the pillow behind Sarah’s head and told the lady “Go ahead, you try to move her”. The lady just gave me a dirty look and went back in the building. It took 15 minutes to get Sarah to calm down and then we went home. I had so many instances like that throughout the 20 years Sarah was home and I just wanted to scream at the people!!! If they would just take the time to really know Sarah they would’ve seen a sweet, caring, loving child. When people would ask me “What’s wrong with her” I would say she was diagnosed with Autism and they would just look at me with a blank stare on their face and then say “Well, you should do something about her behavior” or my all time favorite “If she were my child I would do this, this, and this” at that point I would just say “Ok, be my guest you take her home with you for a couple of days and see how it works for you.” Again, I would get a dirty look and they would leave. Of course I would never give Sarah away to some stranger, but I would get so tired of these remarks. I would just go home and cry, I didn’t know what else to do. Maybe I should have had thicker skin and maybe I still should, but I was only 28 at the time.
When Sarah was diagnosed with Autism two days before her second birthday I thought all of my dreams had died for Sarah, but you know what? I was wrong. Even though she witnessed all of those awful remarks she came out the other end more beautiful. We are all very proud of who she is today.