Success is an interesting concept

We all have different views and different experiences that alter they way we measure it .

My idea of success before autism entered our lives was very different than it is now

Me and my boyfriend , now husband were in love, we had two children a curious , adorable three year old boy and our beautiful baby girl .

We were beginning our lives , he was working and I was in school on the path to becoming a Kindergarten teacher . We were saving and looking to purchase a home for our little family .

I remember thinking how lucky I was . A son and a daughter ,a beautiful life and an amazing partner to share it with . We were motivated and working hard trying to build a life for ourselves and our children .

We had so many plans

So many ideas of “success “

We would buy a big house

Have a big family

Our kids would do it all

Soccer , hockey , dance , plays , cheerleading ~All of it

They would be friends and hang out with each other and their friends would all be hanging at our house . Our son would chase all the boys away . We would have the house all the kids hung out at .

They would have every opportunity and every experience . They would grow up go to college and find careers and have families of their own . I would obviously be babysitting the grandchildren

Autism showed up and most of those plans went out the window . For all of us because it effects every single one of us

Even though my son is nuerotypical he does not get through this unscathed and without loss .

It impacted my daughter the most . The plans for her were turned upside down and inside out . She was diagnosed with Autism and it changed everything. Every dream, every plan , every success

She has autism , sensory processing , anxiety , apraxia and Is non verbal .

She still is my beautiful little girl . I love her with every fiber of my being . Her smile and laughter warm my heart .

In the beginning I was waiting for her to catch up , to talk , to be able to live a typical life . It took time to adjust

I needed to alter my expectations as my reality changed

I now measure success differently, not as a whole but in pieces .

It’s all the steps that come along the way that matter

Success is my daughter dancing on a stage

It is her saying I love you , mama or cookie

It is her making a smooth transition
Or adjusting to something new with ease

It her giving a hug and her squeezing back

It is her laughing and smiling with her siblings

Her being able to wear a mask , dress herself , and find her shoes when asked

To some these are very basic things

Things that are not given a second thought

To us they are everything

When you have a child whose voice you may never hear , who may not understand others , is not expected to engage or function in society

When they have to work twice as hard as anyone else for everything they do


Yes our dreams and ideas have changed but I couldn’t be prouder of my daughter and how far she has come .

She is a true inspiration

She is a fighter , she has fought for every skill , every word , every connection she has ever made .

She is loved and cherished

She has a pure heart , loves and laughs and is happy

That is what success is

It is only something that can be truly measured from the inside

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