Miracle Milestones, One Autistic Child's Journey
Miracle Milestones is a saga of life, with its ups and downs. It is a story of love, hope and acceptance of the unusual as "normal." The mother writes the family's own history of how they survive and what they are living through in the unfoldment process of discovering one child has autism, another born with cystic fibrosis and another son has asthma. After ten years, they have adjusted to their "normal" daily lives now, having experienced so much pain and insecurity, yet they have found no cures. Despite all the anguish of a life filled with disappointments, life can have many rewards. This story is about decisions, toughness and support in the care of a child with autism. Unlike many books, this one is without an ending as Taylor, an autistic boy, is still very young.
Taylor has made progress and is a special person, but the general population does not know how to relate and communicate with him. All people can better understand this illness where the child appears to be perfectly normal, but can't understand what you are saying. This book can help the people directly affected by autism. It will also enable the grandparent, the aunt, the close friend and the neighbor understand the complexity of this disorder and better comprehend how daily life works and impacts on the family, much more general information is given from other sources. The co-author, a writer who initially knew nothing about autism, provides the more general questions that outsiders have and reacts. Amazingly, the number of children with autism has been on the increase, some say even as many as 1 in 500.
Our hope is that others may benefit from this real family's experiences of pushing through problems, despair and shattered dreams and gain strength from their humanness. We hope our book helps people find inspiration, comfort and hope to get past fears of making it through the bleak circumstances of life filled with constant vulnerability and change. It is possible to live one day at a time and find the joys in the small miracles.
This book is written for the lay reader in a conversational style which makes it accessible to a general audience. It is unique in that it is written in the voice of a member of the extended family, while also presenting the point of view of the mother of a child with autism in a series of email excerpts. In many ways, this is a typical story of a child with autism: the early months when everything seemed fine, the delay in language development, parental denial that something was wrong, the search for a diagnosis, and the confusing ups and downs of development which so characterize autistic spectrum disorders. Especially useful is that the child's progress is clearly presented as resulting from a lot of hard work on the part of parents, professionals and the child himself. This is not the story of a miracle - it is much truer than that. It is a fine-grained tale of the realities of life with a child who has a challenging and puzzling disorder, but who is still his unique, loveable self. Parents of children with autistic spectrum disorders will recognize themselves and their families in these pages.Dr. Elizabeth Seagull, Pediatric Psychologist, Professor Emeritus Michigan State University.
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