Early Intervention Made all the Difference

By Emily Downs | December 18, 2023
Author Emily with her three children
Author Emily with her three children

As a first-time mom I didn't know much, but I did know that it felt like my kid was harder than everyone else's. From the very early days he was sensitive to noise, wouldn't sleep, barely spoke and was constantly on the go. Like, ALWAYS running! I would ask his doctor and he just told me kids developed in their own ways. Friends and family would assure me things would settle down or he'd start talking more soon and that I had nothing to worry about.

It wasn't until I called Up to 3 and had some home visits that I finally found some validation. I finally felt like someone heard me and I had someone on my team. They were people who were seeing the things that I was seeing! Our Up to 3 team became my community and my go-to people for all my questions, my fears for the future, and any issues that we were trying to currently deal with. They helped advocate for a diagnosis and even helped get us into ASSERT.

In just that year and a half I saw a ton of improvement in my son's behavior. But
it wasn't just about improving his behavior. It was helping me become a better
mom for him and helping me understand how his little brain was working, and I could not have figured that out on my own. Through Up to 3, I also connected to other moms and found groups of people. I felt like I finally wasn't alone and didn't have to apologize for my son's behavior when I was with them.

Fast forward 8 years and he is a flourishing fourth grader, smart beyond belief, with a personality larger than life, and good friends who don't even know or care about his diagnosis. I honestly don't believe he'd be the kid he is without the help of early intervention for him, and the knowledge and training they gave me to know how to best support him!

And 8 years later, I find myself in the same situation again, this time with my
sweet daughter. I see some little bits of my son in her and the feelings of uncertainty come flooding back. But this time I didn't feel confused or worried for her future. I knew exactly who to call and to not hesitate to reach out because of our experience that we had years ago with my son. I feel so blessed to have my daughter in Up to 3 and to be back with this community and support group. I truly feel early intervention made all the difference for the direction of my son's life and trust that it can do the same with my daughter.

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