Exhausting hours reading and talking to anyone who would listen. I learned that there is whats called a spectrum that autism has . From severer to highly functional , but for all cases early intervention was the key . I read this time and time again, so at 2.5 years old ....(his older sister not even in preschool yet) we set out to find a school. With high hopes in what we knew and thinking that the public schools would help we started locally and visited one of the "supposed better schools " in the area... . They assured us that they knew exactly what was needed and that Dalton was going to do fine. First day of school for Dalton was about 2 hours long. The school had called and said they couldn't get Dalton to stop crying and he wouldn't play with any of the other kids , would you please come get him? Well we must have just had bad luck with that school and besides it was all the way across town....so we decided to find another. We did and it was almost in our back yard only a two minute drive away . Smaller class room with teachers that dealt with special needs children , even a volunteer that was an older Lady that had a son that had down syndrome and was very compassionate. The first day was rough for Dalt , but they soon found out his love .... THE SWING. Not just swinging like most kids , But the only way to describe it is extreme swinging!!!
As I was going to pick him up from his first full day driving down the residential streets winding back into the quiet neighborhood . The school comes into view with trees and shrub's about 10 ft tall in the front and the sides giving shade to the play ground and swing set area. I see a little black ball that keeps bobbing just above the tree line with a rhythm. Didn't really think much of it as i pulled in the parking lot. Walked into the school to Dalton's class room as they were preparing him to leave. The teacher was trying her best not to act like anything was wrong. After i had his hand and his backpack walking out , is when I realized it was Dalton head that was bopping above the treeline. It just about gave the volunteers a heart attack . The only one that it didn't bother was the teacher Marie....she thought it was awesome. That was when I knew that this was the place for Dalton. This was also the year we were introduced to the 'I.E.P" (individual education plan).
The next step was to plan out what Dalton needed , of course i had never even heard of an IEP so i felt that the school and the teachers knew more about what he needed than i would. So i just listened to them and agreed with everything they suggested.
Which was they felt he needed an occupational speech therapist for one on one time to try and get him to speak. One day about three months later I had bumped into the speech therapist in the hall way as i was picking him up and asked her if or when she thought Dalton would ever speak. With that same look as the doctors who gave him the diagnosis of autism she said very bluntly " he will never talk". I was in shock to hear someone who's job it was to get someone to talk or to help them overcome a speech impediment say there was no hope especially to the parent. Not only did it make me agree but it made me so driven to prove her wrong. Earlier that day i had heard on the radio that it was national seat belt day and to make sure you wore you're seat belt because they police would be out writing tickets and looking for offenders. Dalton was still ridding in a car seat at the time and after getting him all buckled in and putting on my seat belt off we went. The frustration of hearing that from a so called professional how dare her i thought...I remember thinking 'if its the last thing i do i will hear Dalton talk". as i turned a corner Dalton was wiggling out of his car seat so i pulled over , getting out and putting him back in and buckling him up. As i was pulling away from the curb i reached back to put my seat belt on just as a motorcycle cop was rounding the corner. I saw him breaking his neck to check my seat belt that i had just clicked in...i didn't even look back till i heard the siren and saw the flashing red light. I thought no way is he writing me a ticket when he pulled up and asked for my licence then went back to his bike with those knee high leather boots and mirrored sun glasses on. Normal routine stuff , then as he came back and handed me a ticket to sign . I couldn't believe it , cant wait to do something for you someday i said. "is that a threat " he said. No was just wondering if they sold men's clothes where you bought those boots. He didn't like my attitude wrote the ticket with out another word and i drove off ....i did fight the ticket and won..but that's another story.