My Maternal Story
As we celebrate two very important awareness campaigns in the month of April, including World Autism Day (2nd of April) and Black Maternal Health Week (April 11-17th), let us offer support and compassion to those impacted by both. I never wanted or thought these concerns would be part of my Life Story.
Most of my life, my mind was focused on being a good person, getting a good education, developing a healthy relationship with my Higher Power (God), making a difference in this world, and my career. It took me about my mid 20s to early 30s to have the desire to become a mother. My husband and I tried for 10 years, and even considered adoption as an option. Unbeknownst to me, during my preparation to take a CAT scan of my abdominal area after complaints of severe pain, thanks to the Radiologist’s questions and whose recommendation was to contact my primary doctor immediately, this is when I received the best news in my life, “You are pregnant.”
I was shocked, overjoyed, and confused all at the same time. I was in my late 30s and had other complications which led me to be classified as High-Risk Pregnancy. However, I was fortunate to work all the way through my pregnancy up until a change in plan for me to give birth two weeks early before the original delivery date, which ended up being an emergency cesarean section.
After going through the process of my child not meeting all of his expected milestones, I knew I had to do more research and dig deeper to advocate for my son in the midst of coping with my own postpartum depression. At the time, I was grateful for the support of my husband and the village we had to intervene and support us during this difficult time. This required me going to two different pediatricians until I found a good fit who recommended Occupational Therapy and my son attending 10 daycares before getting to the root cause of my child’s delayed development once he was enrolled in Pre-K and we went through testing services for his IEP plan and attended my first ARD meeting.
In addition, I had my son tested at Cortica to receive the news that had me falling on my knees and crying like a baby in prayer. I lost my home September of 2022 and September of 2023 my son was diagnosed with High Functioning Autism, ADHD, and speech impairment. This was also confirmed by my son’s school testing results. As an Empath and Intuitive, I saw all of this coming. I was learning to face my fears and my suffering at a deeper level and walk in humility.
I know that I was called to become an Agent of Change and Divine Warrior in this world. Never did I want this to become my narrative. However, there is hope. My precious son is still my Miracle Baby who brings sunshine wherever he goes. Zion is noticed and has been called a leader, teacher, entertainer, and a brilliant mind. Thanks to receiving support and Occupational and Speech therapy from Cortica, ABA therapy and Parenting sessions from Child’s Path, we have support and an extended village to help Zion become the best that he can be as a young, talented, African American male. I am determined to preserve his Black Boy Joy.
For my further personal and professional development, I have joined Cortica Caregivers group, Autism Moms support group, utilizing resources from Autism Speaks, Autism Connect, have registered for PESI 3rd Annual Autism Symposium in April 20-21st, and listen to Neurodiversity Podcasts for helpful tips in parenting my son.
I am truly learning more about how-to walk-in acceptance during this major life transition and implement the coping skills of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Dialectical Behavioral therapy, Acceptance and Commitment therapy, Spirituality, Compassion, EFT (Tapping), and holistic self-care practices with accountability.
There is hope.
“And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm, and steadfast.” 1 Peter 5:10