When Braiden was less than 2 years old, he was consistently delayed in reaching his developmental milestones. At his 2 year old checkup, his pediatrician did not seem concerned even though both mom and day care provider felt that his overall developmental skills were delayed. This was more apparent in his socialization skills when playing with a group of peers as he never interacted with them. His mom began researching speech delays and saw that autism was mentioned on several websites. When she started looking down the list for signs of autism, she recognized several red flags; the tip toeing, hand flapping, and lack of communication skills. A colleague gave his mom a contact for Texana’s Early Childhood Intervention Program where he began therapy. Braiden was subsequently enrolled into the Children’s Center for Autism. At that time, he could speak in three word sentences but lacked developmental appropriate language skills, wore diapers and engaged in aggressive behaviors. Within a month of applied behavior analysis treatment, he was toilet trained, his speech had improved, along with his socialization skills. Within six months he learned his letters, numbers, colors, shapes and is even reading. He quickly formed friendships at both school and church and is now indistinguishable from his peers. He picked up skills so fast that Texana asked him to testify at both the Texas State House and Senate Finance Hearings to protect a grant received for applied behavior analysis treatment. He did this and received a standing ovation – he was 5 years old at the time! Braiden’s progress has been remarkable, he now attends a local elementary school and is doing well in class. Each summer he returns to Texana for Summer Bridge Class to keep his skills intact. His mom says “The dreams I had for him once were gone, and now they are back, I feel the sky is the limit for Braiden- I got my child back.”
*Braiden is a former client. His mother shared his story with Community Relations and consented to its use on our website.