Wednesday, December 12, 2012

What's In a Diagnosis

What is in a diagnosis for a child with developmental delays?  Is it important to have a diagnosis of autism or cerebral palsy or apraxia or sensory integrated disorder?  Do I really NEED to know WHY my little man is developmentally delayed? 

I already know that he is a preemie baby.  I already know that he has hypotonia. I already know that he had a tumor that was infected with MRSA that resulted in palette and gum surgery.  I already know he was profoundly deaf for a full 12 months.  And, I know consequently, he has developmental delays.

With or without a diagnosis:
He is still my precious little one that has the best belly chuckle and sweet loving ways.  He is still my precious child that is not afraid to try something, fall down, and try it again.  He is my rough and tumble, get down and dirty, little snuggle bug.  His favorite color will still remain the same.  He will still have speech issues at the end of the day.  He will still struggle with low muscle tone and drooling.

So why get the diagnosis?
I do not want him to be defined by a diagnosis.  I do not want people to limit their expectations of his success because of a diagnosis.

I want people to see him as our busy little "B".  As him and all the amazing things he can become and will achieve!

No one told ME, I have hypotonia!  I can do anything!

It does not matter how many times I fall down, I will prevail!

But, then, I have to ask myself, are these really the only reasons I have not pushed for an official diagnosis?  I have to be honest with myself and with you.  No, there is another reason I am also afraid.  I am afraid of knowing the label as I am fearful it will taint my mindset on his abilities.

Then, you guessed it, the guilt!
Am I depriving him of more therapy, other options, because I am putting my head in the sand?  I do not know the right answer.  As I fumble through this and learn more and more about what to do and what not to do, I promise to share.

If you have questions please let me know!  If you have feedback about this post I would love to hear it, but, please be kind. 


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