Thursday, April 23, 2009

Autism...A Diagnosis of HOPE!


A few years ago, I was asked to teach a class for parents of newly diagnosed children. These families felt frustrated and had little hope for their children. I had an idea to make a PowerPoint presentation filled with pictures of my son, to document his progress. As he was growing up, we worked very hard to have beautiful pictures of him. Often (Always) we would take 30 - 50 pictures to get one we loved. The others were in files on our computer. Who wants to look at not-really-so-wonderful pictures that slap you in the face screaming there is something wrong with your child?

So in order to make the PowerPoint, I had to go through those files. What a shock! It became so obvious how far my son had come. You could see when LIFE was breathed back into my son. We are so grateful to Early Intervention for being there to help Jonathan. We are even more grateful to the dedicated teachers and therapists who have done more than required to help our kids. And we are ultimately grateful to the Lord for His touch on our precious son's life.

Today I finally figured out how to add music to my two year old PowerPoint Presentation (A miracle in itself!) and also learned how to convert the Powerpoint to a movie I could upload!

(First click the arrow to start the video. Then if you click the rectangle on the bar at the bottom of the video, you'll be able to see it full screen. Makes it way easier to see the pictures!)



8 comments:

Stephanie T. said...

I love the transformation of your son. He's so cute too!
God bless you for all you do. His life will be forever changed because of your investment.

lonestar said...

Well done, I love all the pictures. Thanks for sharing!

Anonymous said...

Is your powerpoint presentation for parents full of religious preaching?

Donna Cooper said...

This is me, Donna, needed to comment on a comment. I just love that those who say derogatory things, do so anonymously.

So...for ground rules.

1) This is my blog.
2) From what I understand, free speech is still a right in the USA. Not sure how long that will last...
3) "Religious preaching" is normally not sung.
3a) Parents full of Religious Preaching is an odd way to word what you are trying to say...but the Powerpoint is for anyone who wants to watch/listen.
4) It is my right to include a beautiful Christian song on my Powerpoint, it is your right to turn off the volume on your computer if you don't like it.
5) I am a Christian, and I am not ashamed of my Savior, who came to earth and died for me and for you.
6) Jesus loves you!
7) If you who are anonymous ever wish to ask some questions, feel free to email me! AWEtism@aol.com.
I'd be happy to write back.

Anonymous said...

Donna, I think you misunderstood 5:15. You mentioned in your blog entry that you prepared a powerpoint presentation for parents of newly diagnosed children, and I think what 5:15 wondered was if that presentation was solely about Jesus curing your son, or did it contain some helpful, practical information which parents of children with autism could use to help their children? I know that I would be pretty disappointed and angry if I went to a presentation that was supposed to be teaching me ways to help my son, but turned out to be nothing more than religious preaching. I think that was 5:15's point, which was a fair enough question, but you got very defensive. No one is questioning your right to believe in God or your right to love Christian music.

Donna Cooper said...

This Power Point presentation was only a tiny portion of the evening. Jonathan actually came with me and played some games and interacted so that the parents there could observe a child who had made progress. This was a Hanen Course (lasting 12 weeks), teaching parents specific ways to help their child learn language. (www.hanen.org) The Teachers of the class felt that most of the parents had little hope for their children to make gains, so they asked me to come to the final class and share my experiences working with my son.

Jonathan is still autistic, but he has come a long ways.
I have never said that my son was healed, but I do feel that God has guided us to therapies and people who have been instrumental in bringing change in our son's lives.

I have tons of information that I share with families of newly diagnosed children. We've used Floortime and RDI. Hanen is a marvelous class for children with language delays, and also has a class to help parents learn techniques for working with their children. We also used the Baby Bee DVD's. Lots of love and effort in working with our son. I believe that there is hope for every child, that every child can make progress and reach their potential. I also feel that this is a marathon, not a sprint. That change occurs over time, not over night.

Not every child will talk, but I believe most every child can learn some form of communication. Not every child will be as social as Jonathan has come to be, but I hope that every child will feel loved and show love to those who care for them.

I actually watched the Power Point again, and with the exception of the music (which sings about God making a way, when you are frustrated feeling like there is no way) nothing about the presentation is "religious" at all. Just pictures of my son, and the changes in his little life.

I hope that explains things a bit better.

Donna Cooper said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tom Chereck Jr. said...

Awetism, what a wonderful effect.

After seeing Temple Grandin movie now, as a 46yr old Oregonian Holy Spirit filled street corner evangelist, pesticide applicator husband and father of 2 miracle babies, my wife Julie and I are blessed.

I went on a single focus adventure for over an hour this am. You Tube christian videos, to Temple Grandin at UCDavis, to your blog spot, unable to contact you, missed this, sought to encourage you via other media even tried at first tennessee Bank if that is where you work.

That is how the male awetistic mind works though. Single focus until success.

So many end in divorce through a awetistic husband who has no clue why he acts like he does.

I hope you cherish your husband as much as you cherish your son.