My name is Rose and I have two children a daughter named Kayla and a son named Tyler. Tyler is a 4 year old boy with special needs. Special needs…what did that mean to us. In the beginning (which was right before Tyler’s 3rd birthday, all it really meant was speech delay. Which really didn’t shock me because I went to speech as a child. However as time passed it turned into much more than that. As a working mom (at the time) I had a lot of excuses and to be very honest I was in Denial. By the time Tyler started his initial therapy he was already 3.5 years old. As his 4th birthday was fast approaching we really didn’t see much progress. I know most of you are thinking…these things take time but in truth I felt there was something bigger brewing. On April 17th (just 2 weeks following Tyler’s 4th birthday) we went to see developmental pediatrician. That is when she told us that Tyler had PDD. We were completely shocked. Although in our heart we knew something “just wasn’t right” we never thought he was on the spectrum. I immediately contacted my sisters (one of my sisters is his god mother) to give them the news and to have them help what felt like morning the lose of raising a “typical developing child” As devastated as we were they continued to remind me that Tyler was the same loving child that walked out of that exam room that day. That he was an unbelievable child and that his family (especially his cousins) adore him. I remember my husband and I going through so many emotions (still do) But, I know we needed to act fast, my son needed us. That’s when a family member (cousin) reached out to me. She was going through the same situation. She sent me emails daily with advice and called frequently to give me hope and guidance. I can only hope that everyone can find that someone in their life to help guide them. She truly helped me keep my sanity and still calls me to share any new information she has learned. I am FOREVER grateful to her! If you do come across someone that has just gotten the “label”, please lend an ear or provide any support/guidance you can, it will forever make a difference in that person’s life and their special needs child. So… fast forward we moved out of NYC to Long Island where my son now attends BCW in Woodbury. In addition to full-time school, Tyler also sees a feeding therapist, Audiologist/Speech Therapist, and takes swimming lessons. We have also tried a host of other things…some not as successful as others. So, I am going to write about the ones that I had seen Tyler improve the most. As I mentioned in my previous post, something that worked for Tyler may not work for someone else. But…just maybe, there is a chance that it might and to me that is worth writing about. By the way, Tyler is doing Amazing! Everyday he does something to make me proud. He continues to amaze me with his abilities. A doctor once said to me that “Every child is a blessing” and “Tyler is here to teach me a lesson.” To date there have been so many. Just to name a few—1.Never set limits, in fact raise the bar, he always amazes me 2. laugh a lot…even if it isn’t that funny because it feels great! 3. Make a big deal even out of the smallest accomplishments—being a confident child is half the battle.