54831de0hbx7l5vThis afternoon I have returned back home after a weekend escape down to Melbourne for the Digital Parents Conference 2012 (#DPCon12) and some fun, relaxation, pampering and foodie adventures. I have had the most wonderful time. I love going to blog get together and conferences and for blogging and social media parents this would have to be the premier event of the year and a visit to Melbourne would be incomplete without visiting my wonderful in-laws.  I have so much to write and share … but I am alittle tired as lots of things to catch up and do on my return … but I just realised as I was having a look at my blog I had a look at when I did my very first post … and I was surprised to realise that it was 4 years ago today. Yeah Happy Birthday ‘At Home Mum’.

But I also have an alternate reason for looking at my first post … this is my first post of Autism Awareness Month … And I wanted to use this to highlight my first blog post (and the timing could not have been better). I know it might seem alittle left field for a post on Autism … since it covers nothing to do with Autism … and that is part of my reasoning … but my first post is to highlight that every parent on the spectrum did not start that way. I wanted my first post to acknowledge and celebrate where … like alot of parents where we came from.

Most parents when their children are small … with the exception of parents of other children on the spectrum or those that have them in the family. Have no or little knowledge or awareness of Autism and don’t think about it in relation to their child and the hopes, dreams, expectations that they have for the future. And that was the true for me. I know that when I started this blog I had very little idea of what Autism was and it wasn’t on my radar of causes I was passionate about. I had dreams of my children being bilingual, involved in sports, musical instrument lessons (Suzuki Method), community organisations (Scouts & Guides) and other interesting things. All of which … most probably are not going to happen. But like so many parents (new figures show it is now 1 in 88) Autism is a part of our lives. For many parents this awareness might come into their consciousness through a small idea or a hint or a little feeling that something is not quite right or someone might just pull them aside and give them a huge shock … but for many parents this happens around the time their children turn 2. But before that time they are just like other parents.  And as part of the process of highlighting and raising awareness for Autism … I think that it is important to remember where most parents of children on the spectrum start from in the process of getting their children the help they need.

Image: Happy Girl Receiving Gifts by Stuart Miles – FreeDigitialPhotos.net