2022 was the year we moved and climbed mountains.

It was the year we climbed the tallest mountain in the UK.

It was the year that the mountains moved and we finally got the ASD diagnosis after many meetings, appointments and letters during a two year wait on the (deliberately underfunded by the Government) NHS.

A diagnosis not needed for us, but to provide legal protection to my son who had been repeated excluded and bullied in a school system that repeated fails ASD boys with beautifully melanated skin. (Amongst many others)

A prejudiced system where sensory overloads can be viewed as “acts of defiance “, “bad behaviour” or “problems at home” and feelings of confusion, frustration or loneliness all renamed as “anger”.

So this year has been a journey- But WE decided our path and we chose joy every moment we could. So there were tears, tantrums, loss, release of some friendships and financial hardships BUT we still climbed mountains, flew kites, skated for miles and swam in the sea because we refused to limit ourselves to the confines of the ignorance of others.

Hopefully by sharing a little of our experience this year, it gives some insight into ASD families like ours where being a child can often mean being ostracised, misunderstood or labelled and being a parent can often mean being judged or condescended or/ and hearing “It must be so hard with a child like that…” And as much as I despise those words, it is hard to be a parent sometimes because everyday you have to send your child out into a world that may not want or try to understand them a world that might choose to ignore their sweetness and individuality and that knowledge is heart breaking. So that is why this year I am so thankful for the formal diagnosis, the support and protection it brings right alongside all the joy, love, lessons and laughter that my boy has brought into our lives in 2022!

2022 – the year we climbed mountains, surrounded ourselves with good people and filled our time as much as possible with joy and love by God’s grace Xx

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