The A Team Says the A word

I was unclear about how or if I was ever going to blog about the specifics of this. But I think it would be too hard for me to keep blogging in my usual fashion without just coming out with it. Last Wednesday afternoon Jeff and I sat down in an ocean view conference room at Queen Alexandra Centre For Children’s Health with an MD, a psychologist and a speech path, who collectively told us that they think Kurt has autism (or, more technically, Autism Spectrum Disorder).

This did not come as a surprise, of course. For one thing, it’s not like we’ve never noticed Kurt is little eccentric, and I’m not just referring to his habit of speaking in tongues. For another, one does not wake up on a Wednesday morning, call together an autism assessment team, and bring one’s kid in for quick afternoon appointment, no matter what country you live in. It was a long process, involving a lot of conversations amongst ourselves and various doctors and other health professionals along the lines of, “Has he ever…?” “Do you think he…?” “What about…?”, followed by some referrals with other medical professionals, etc.

(There are organizations out there trying to find a cure for autism, and thank heaven for them, but I’d really like to see a high profile organization purely devoted to finding a diagnostic test for autism. A simple test, like peeing on a stick or something.  That would really help.)

So what does this mean for our little protagonist?  Meh, who knows.  He could have a lot of tough times ahead of him, and he could end up being relatively indistinguishable from other kids in a few years time.  Such is the nature of this thing.  Yes, this is the kid who remains functionally nonverbal, who will spin any object he encounters whether it was meant to be spun or not, who thinks that light switches are the single most exciting feature of any room, and who can line up blocks and run back and forth along lines with the best of them.  But this is also the kid that will dive into your arms, the kid who gives his baby sister kisses, the kid who lights up when he sees his favorite faces on Skype, laughs back and forth with his grandpa until they’re hoarse, gets cranky if you’re not paying him enough attention, and has recently started filling in the missing words to “Why the Sun Shines”.  Point being, he certainly does enough to set him apart as “autism spectrum”, but there’s plenty he also does which makes him very different from what you might think of when you hear the word “autism”.  Stay tuned for more of the excruciating detail you’ve come to expect about Kurt’s life to see what happens!  No matter what, I promise you’ll get more answers than you did from LOST.

Anyway, I would hate for any of you to start seeing Kurt purely through an autism colored lens, so to speak, and I’m sure as hell not going to feel better by turning this into an Affliction Blog About One Child’s Struggle With Whatever.  Those kinds of blogs serve a definite purpose for both reader and writer, but that’s not what our life is about.

I just wanted you to know what’s going on with us, and that we’re okay.  You’re welcome to send me information, although, and I’m just being honest now, it’s unlikely I haven’t read it. Claims from Playmates of the Year regarding revealed knowledge of autism’s cause, will be quietly mocked.  Words of encouragement/love/denial, however, will be lovingly accepted.

And I assure you, he remains our snuggly little guy.


11 thoughts on “The A Team Says the A word”

  1. Beautifully written. Your perspective, insight and knowledge are amazing. Kurt is indeed a fortunate (and oh-so-adorable)little guy!…whom we miss (as well as you, Jeffrey and Maria)terribly


  2. He could have been born with horns, wings and tail and we wouldn’t love him any less. We know he and you guys are going to have challenges ahead but things change on a daily basis in the modern and medical world and so will Kurt. I believe Maria around will speed him up as it has pretty similar kid from my co worker. Little Kurtster has the perfect parents,sister, relatives and friends to help him along.


  3. Thanks Jayne, I know there will be tough times but Kurt will still be Kurt and no matter what happens he is still your baby, and as Lisa said he could have been born w/ horn, wings and a tail and we wouldn’t love him any less. He couldn’t have more perfect parents…


  4. He is so sweet looking in the picture, I think he will be just fine. I bet he grows up to be very creative, intelligent and good person. We love him and Maria and you and Jeff always…anne b


  5. thanks for the info.he could have the tetloff late bloomer syndrome.or whatever.we love him no matter what..and i agree-he is in the best of hands.you and jeff and maria and -us all.love and family.thats the greastest gift.


  6. Autistic or not, Kurt is still my cutest nephew. Sure there will be challenges but all lives have those. Yours and Kurt’s will just be of a different type. Love you guys!


  7. When and if you need to make adjustments for Kurt, you will be ready and willing. Time has a funny way of working things out the way they are supposed to be for each of us on a daily basis. Your patience and love for Kurt will help everyday!
    Juice, Amy, Matt and Abby send their love to each of you!


  8. I miss Kurt! I miss his sense of humor, quick wit, stubbornness and compassion for others! (I miss his funny parents too!)
    Keep writing and sharing in your own beautiful style.!

    Liked by 1 person

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