Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Gillian, my Baby

Gillian is my youngest child. She's my little baby, though don't tell her that! At almost 9, she would screech if she heard herself referred to as a baby.

Last Spring, Gillian's teacher approached me about some things she had seen in the classroom with Gilly that she felt looked a lot like Asperger's Syndrome. Her school used to be where the Autistic children in the district went- it was a mainstream school, but they have a Autistic Spectrum Teacher on staff, a special class room for helping them, and a lot of other resources.

We agreed to have Gillian tested when school started back up this fall, because we've always know something was different about Gillian. She's... special, for a lack of a different word. Gillian is just different, and quirky, and loving, and wonderful, but definitely different.

We just got the final word on the testing today- the school found that after extensive testing, which included Speech Therapy testing, physical therapy, observation periods, and much more, that Gillian does shows enough signs of Asperger's Syndrome to qualify for a diagnosis.

On Friday, we go in and sign her IEP, and go over what support will be put into place to help Gillian be as successful as she can be in school.

Gillian has know from the first moment why they were testing her, and what Asperger's is. I told her today what the school decided, and she asked if that was a bad thing. I told her it wasn't bad, that it just makes her special, and that it means that she'll have more help in school, and let other people help understand her better.

These two photos are two of my absolute favorite pictures of Gillian, because they show who she is. Gillian is just quirky, and isn't scared to be different, or march to the beat of her own drum.

It helps having a diagnosis. It doesn't change who Gillian is, but it can help other people understand her more.


  1. It really does help to "know"...and what helps even more is having our special, quirky kids hang out with other special quirky kids. It helps them understand that they aren't so alone.

    If your district has a gifted program, consider trying to test in. You'd be surprised at how many Asperger kids are in these "smart kid" programs--and how many of them excel!

    I know, because I was here once and didn't allow the label to pigeon hole my child--I just kept doing the best for him that I could and kept helping him reach for the stars!

    And so far, he's doing just that!

  2. You're right, she's still the same kid she was last week!

    I am a teacher and I wish all parents were as cooperative as you guys have been. I think you'll all be so happy that the school can now help provide the right services!

  3. I am very glad your in a caring district. They wanted to ship my aspergers son off to another school and give him a modified curriculum. He started third grade with 95% on all his tests and by the end of fourth he was failing every test.

    He is definitely quirky and very sensitive to people. He notices all people and often thinks they are paying attention to him.

    We tried sports in the past and it ended badly every time. Now we do cubscouts sucessfully and we homeschool.

    He is quirky and picky about who he will let around him. He would rather have no friends than one who doesn't share his interests. I love that about him.

    I was told that he will outgrow most of the meltdowns and emotional outbursts. I was also told he will grow up to be a normal adult and that I was doing a good job.

    That was by the doctors at UNC Chapel Hill. I love a doctor who tells the parents good job.

    There is an AWESOME book called All Cats Have Aspergers. We used it to explain it to him, his friends, my friends, our family, and everyone else who wanted to know more.

  4. It sure took a while to get the diagnosis didn't it? I'm glad to hear that you are finally getting somewhere, and hopefully Gilly will now get the help she needs.

    Frugality Is Free


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