I remember a bleak afternoon in January 2004, calling my mom after Curt's 2-year well check at the pediatrician's office, where he confirmed what I already knew in my heart: that there were clinical findings to support an autism diagnosis for my sparkling, brown-eyed boy.
I cried into the phone, lamenting the unknown and the fact that we wouldn't receive an actual diagnosis until we traveled to the Bluebird Neurology Clinic at Texas Children's Hospital some six months in the future.
My mom said to me on the phone, "Amy,what's the worst it could be?"
"Autism," I told her.
But autism isn't the worst. Not by a long shot.
Today, at two weeks shy of his 10th birthday, Curt continues to sparkle, excel in math, shoot video and edit movies on the computer, analyze elevators, play basketball, chess and soda can baseball, and drive us nuts with his RC helicopter.
I know now that autism isn't the worst.
I get to kiss him goodnight, send him off to school, buy him new clothes, watch his face on Christmas morning, remind him to do his homework and smell the scent of his clean hair after a shower.
And not all parents get to do that.
Autism is not the worst. Not by a long shot.