Tuesday, November 4, 2008

the day has finally come...

Its been a long time coming,.. I have been waiting for this day... Knowing will not only alleviate my anxiety and worries but it will also help us move forward. Jorel's pending developmental assessment took awhile because the public system queue is very long. I had just tobe patient since its a free system and the Children's hospital is the best in Sydney.

It's is official, I am a mother of a special child. I had dreamt of how I would feel once its been confirmed. With my Special education background I had more or less diagnosed my own son, I knew that his developmental age was in the 1 to 2 years age bracket (and the test confirmed that).... He has mild to moderate autism, they refer to it as GLOBAL DEVELOPMENT DELAY. There were no tears, just maybe a huge relief -- it was like a weight over my shoulders were lifted. I had longed to know so we can move on, move forward to a brighter tommorow.

So far even after his diagnosis, everything had already been put to place. I had already put him in SPEECH and OCCUPATIONAL Theraphy. He is already at ABC preschool, finished all his blood tests. I had already queued him into the public system's Early intervention (fingers crossed he will ge a place January '09). How timely when I had gotten the results that I spoke to the Pendle Hill school principal and she had asked me to send over the paper to add to my application. I have called up a place called ASPECT -- a private early intervention group that is gov't subsidised as back up, in case he doesnt get into the public system.

During Jorel's Assessment at the Childrens Devt Unit at Westmead, the doctors and nurses were quite impressed with his gross and fine motor skills. His eye contact with us, his parents, were very consistent and he responded well to us. Of course he didnt respond much to them, as they were complete strangers but he was good enough not to cry. He only cried when we made him complete an OT task for testing. He was a cheerful and happy little child whilst we had discussed Jorel's case with Dr. Silove and other specialists there.

Patrick and I were patted on the back because we had already enforced our own early intervention at home and Jorel had developed a great interaction with us and his siblings. As a parent you think of that ---if you are doing enough or if you are helping him come out of his shell. I have to admit their affirmation meant the world to me, its because I had agonized over this, Iniisip ko minsan kung sapat ba ang ginagawa namin para sa kanya.


I keep thinking how GOD had prepared me for my special boy.. coincidence -- tell me how strange of a coincidence the series of events are --- its as if GOD had just put things in its proper perpective, one by one...
* I met hubby and needed a reason to stay in Manila -- I had gone to St. Scho to study EDUCATION because we had a preschool. Itook SPECIAL EDUCATION (1997) by default because I had no other course that was closely related to Elementary education.
* I had difficult pregnancies, even on my 3rd one with Jorel. However before I delivered him, Patrick and I were balling our eyes out as they wheeled me out to go to the delivery room. I even wrote a 'just incase' letter to hubby if anything had happened to me. It was such an emotional delivery. I was shaking before and after my delivery,...
* Patrick and I made a major decision to ligate so Jorel would be our last child since each pregnancy met with hypertension... Now we both agree it was a wise one not just medically (for me) -- because we can concentrate on our child's education from this day on. We do have 3 years till he goes to preschool... It is our hope he can develope communications skills by then.
* Patrick decided finally to leave for Australian in 2006 and in 2007 we migrated to O. Our arrival in OZ was just a few days before Jorel's 2nd bday when we left Manila.
* At 2 to 2. 5 years, I gave Jorel the chance to develop language and when he didn't I had began his tests with the pediatrician's advise.
* A few days before he turned 3 he was diagnosed with AUTISM... Patrick and I had been way ready to accept the diagnosis -- prepared na kami.... We just needed the piece of paper to state what we had to deal with and we are moving on --- hoping, believing and praying that GOD and our love for Jorel will help him cope and heal....


I am still so blessed to have Jorel. I have had to admit this out loud that among all my kids Jorel is the sweetest.. He gives you hugs and kisses all the time. I love the way he seeks me out when he wants me to help him with something. When he wants to sleep, he leads my hand and we walk hand in hand to the room and we lie down side by side. He expresses his delight with me embracing me ever so tight. I love the way he looks into my eyes and his face break into a beautiful smile. I love to hear his giggles and laughter and the way he shows me his cheeky look when he has done something... His face is so angelic, so sweet and so true.. God really planned to give my son Jorel to me, to love me forever and to make me feel like the luckiest mom in the world...

23 comments:

gem said...

hugs to you, joanne. jorel is lucky to have a mom like you. you are perfect for him. God is good, keep the faith. there is nothing that love can't conquer.

Freethinker said...

Jo, you just made me cry. I so feel you because remember, we were at Jorel's first birthday party and his birthday and Lilaa's are just days apart. I feel connected to you with just this.

I'm looking forward to seeing you again so I can give you a hug. But believe me, you are ready for Jorel, when you took up SPED in college you were ready even then...

Sending you love and hugs and kisses from me and the girls :-) Miss ya! :-)

Ria Maningat-Mojica said...

How I wish I was there to give you a hug. I'm crying now as I write this cos we were pregnant at the same time and gave birth to Bianca and Jorel only 2 months apart. But I know you'll be okay...it won't be easy, but it will work out in the end...it always does. Hugs to you and the kids!

Ria Maningat-Mojica said...

Belated Happy Birthday pala toJorel!

Mia Castrillo said...

jo dear! i am looking at jorel's picture now and i still can't believe it. no matter what the tests say, my assessment is that he is a confident and secure child and he is so lucky to have you as his mom. i still believe that things will work out well for you in the end and he will eventually have a normal and happy life. i hold on to that happy thought. warm hugs to you! we are always here for you!

diane said...

A Big cyber hugs to you Joanne! I feel you. Sobra! Mas matapang ka nga sa akin kung tutuusin kasi nung na diagnose si Huey ng Cerebral Palsy my world collapsed. Kaya I know Kaya mo yan. Ikaw pa! Jorel is lucky to have you. Be strong and we are just here for you. ((((Hugs))) Keep on praying! Miracle happens. :)

leira said...

i of all people can relate with what you are going thru. Sa atin sila binigay kasi alam nilang kaya natin at mas malaki yung love na puede nating ibigay. I just want to let you know that if you need to talk to someone who knows what you're feeling.Know that I am here for you my friend.

marking said...

Hi Joanne, I am teary eyed as I write this. I pray that you, your family will be able to cope with all that you face. Just take it day by day with God by your side. Will say a prayer for you. Take care

Cookie Aguilar said...

hi ms. joanne!!! your last paragraph really made me cry...As a mother, it saddens us to know somethings wrong with our child. But i really admire your great courage to face this-- you and your husband's. I really admire how you handle things and how you walk yourself through anything. There will be hard times but I know your family will be able to overcome them. if you feel like crying... go ahead...its really nice to do that once in awhile. Basta always remember to pray to Him because Miracles still happen... Jorel is really lucky to have a mother like you... Hugs!!!

Me-anne's Nook said...

hugs and lots of kisses to you joanne, truly the Lord has prepared you so well and He knows you can handle it well. Life becomes wonderful even if there are struggles and difficulties because WE HAVE A GOD SO LOVING AND INSPIRING WHO HEALS THE PAIN and KEEP US GOING. We simply loves us so much. The good thing is Jorel is so lucky to have you as his mother and Patrick as well is lucky to have you as a partner. God Bless you.

Anonymous said...

Hi! Hugs hugs hugs! With early intervention and your love for him, he will get through life with a breeze. I don't know anything about it, clinical or otherwise but I have gut feel that it's just a simple delay. God is good all the time! We love you and we'll continue to include you in our prayers. Kisses to the kids and a big hug too for pat!

Ems

Lit Coo said...

Hi Joanne! Smile and be strong. Jorel is blessed for having parents like you and Patrick. Maraming bata sa mundo malusog, normal pero walang magulang na nagmamahal.

cherry said...

God couldn't have planned things better. He couldn't have given Jorel and his brothers a better mom. Your boys (sons and Pat) are your sources of strength. No wonder you're one of the strongest people I know.

bjay said...

mars, you are a very strong person. tama, ibinigay sa iyo si bunso mo because God is sure he will be well taken cared for. looking at jorel, I see a world of possibilities. your love will improve him, make him better than everybody else. I see this now as a battle won, because as you've said, you & pat have embraced the imminent early on. hugs to you!

Christine said...

Joanne, I am saddened to hear about this but I trust that you and Patrick are the best parents Jorel could ever have. I know that you and your family will get through this. {{{{{hugs}}}} God bless. I will pray for you and for your family. Miss you!

Pia and Jeff said...

Hugs to you Joanne! Your post led me to tears. I admire and salute you for your courage and strength, had it happened to me, I wouldn't know what to do. No matter what the diagnose will say, Jorel is such a blessed child because he has you as his mom, Patrick his dad and Jerome and Jacob as his brothers!

I hope and pray that God will continue to strengthen your love for each other as a family!

Miss you and love you friend! Dito lang kami ni Jeff for you!

Maricar said...

Joanne, you and Patrick have been prepared by God for this, and He knows that you are ready and able to watch over and love this special little person in your life. God knew what He was doing when He sent Jorel to you! {{Hugs}}

steph said...

You & Patrick are special parents. Your children are lucky to have both of you. Be strong. Have faith. Hugs.

Issa Virtucio-Lucido said...

HI Joane...I know you are such a strong person! Hindi ito ibibigay sayo kung hindi mo kaya! wish I can hug you right now...

Alby said...

I agree with what everyone said. Jorel is so blessed to have been placed under your and Patrick's care. And you are also blessed because you were handpicked by God to fulfill his wonderful plans for Jorel. Have faith. Your family will rise above this. Hugs. xoxo

Mickee said...

Jorel is blessed to have you as his parents, and you are blessed to have him as your son.

juliet said...

hi joanne,

i don't know how to start with this. i am in shock and at the same time in awe with the way you handle the situation. God gave Jorel to you because he could not think of any other mother who can be there to love him and support him with the way you do. i truly admire you. God bless.

Juliet

cabbie lopez said...

stay strong and i know you will. you are one brave momma and a really blessed one. my son diba was diagnosed with cataract din dati and it really pained me but then i told myself that maybe this is god's plan and that he will be there for me all through the years... he is on lens implant now with glasses. ok naman so far.

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