Samantha and her husband did not know their 7-month old son had swallowed a small toy. Nor were they prepared for the cascade of medical and behavioral complications it would cause. The tiny plastic doll necklace did not show up on x-rays, but the damage it created in Greyson’s esophagus took months to diagnose and led to severe infection, long term eating difficulties and neutropenia. At age three, he is still prone to bacterial infections.
The mix of symptoms Greyson was experiencing— sensory and eating issues on top of immune system deficiencies—made it especially difficult to identify his most recent diagnosis of autism. “I was in a very lost place for a few months,” Samantha said. “Our fight for so long was to get our son past the feeding problems and other issues. We always felt there would be an end to all that, but with the autism diagnosis, there was a feeling that this is never going to end. It was very difficult to hear.”
Raising Special Kids helped by connecting Samantha with a parent who could provide mentoring for her. “Raising Special Kids has given me that opportunity, and it has been such a learning experience. Reaching out and helping other families—it really makes you feel like you are not alone.”