I still remember that day. I can still see Sean playing on the floor with stacking rings. I remember seeing my husband reach for my hand but I could hardly feel his, my fingers numb and my palms damp. I knew the words were coming like a commuter knows the time of his morning train. But when it arrived I remember wishing I had put off the appointment, covered my ears or left. It hurt so much more than I had anticipated.
Sean's official diagnosis is PDD-NOS Pervasive Developmental Delay - Not Otherwise Specified. Somehow the NOS part always makes me chuckle. PDD-NOS -- the acronym sounds so definite and exact. The Ah-ha! When the reality is that it's incredibly uncertain and vague. That's the tough part of autism. There's so much ambiguity. The spectrum is large, a vast sea of symptoms and degrees. It's the holding cell where you are initially placed.
I used to think I had much more control over life's outcome. The older I get the more I realize how complex it all is. I've learned to take each day as it comes -- peel off the skin and head in teeth first and eyes shut. In the end, it's all a gamble. There are no guarantees. There are no sure bets in life. I'll take my chances.