It’s still about a little blonde boy…

By |February 9th, 2014|Autism, Life, Parenting|0 Comments|

2013-08-15 12.10.41A year ago I wrote It’s about a little blonde boy… about our fight to get insurance coverage for our sweet son with autism in Utah State. The bill didn’t pass so here I am again full of hope…and if I’m being honest, sometimes anxiety about what is to come. It is still, and always will be, about our little blonde Bridger…

Since I work for the State of Utah we have been blessed the last year and a half to participate in a Pilot Program so Bridger’s ABA Therapy has been insured 80/20!!! This amazing blessing has given us the opportunity to breathe again after depleting our “emergency savings” the prior year paying for these services that have been essential to Bridger’s progress but will break the bank if you’re not independently wealthy.  If you follow me on Facebook then you have been spammed by seen the many brag-posts boasting that Bridger is now using some sign language to communicate with us, that he occasionally repeats a sound that amazingly resembles a word, that he is starting to learn how to swim and that he is using a spoon and fork to eat sometimes now instead of only using his fingers! These may not seem like notable feats to the parents of a typically developing almost 7 year old, but to our family these are cause for celebration!!! Seriously, full on clapping, cheering, grab the camera, high-fiving moments! They are moments that give us hope for the future of our sweet little blonde boy…

Unfortunately, the pilot program ends the last day of June 2014. If something doesn’t happen in the current legislative session, the Frys will have to say good-bye to Ben. Ben is Bridger’s ABA Tutor that has worked tirelessly with our boy for the last year and a half to help him tolerate holding a crayon in his hand, then scribbling and most recently drawing a straight line (hip hip hurray!) Ben has become more than a tutor to us, he has become part of the family and at times he is our savior. He has worked countless hours so that Bridger could learn to spoon his food and learn new signs. He teaches him skills by repeating them over and over and rewarding him as he learns. If only you could hear the cheers from Bridger’s workroom and the squeals of delight as Bridger masters a new task. Coming up on the agenda for Ben and Bridger is putting on and taking off his shoes and coat and sometime soon even potty training! ABA will help Bridger learn self-help skills and gain some independence so that in the future he doesn’t have to depend on others for everything!

2013-08-15 14.44.39ABA Therapy may not be the route that all parents of autistic children choose to take, but for us it is the right method. It is the way our son learns. It is what will help him progress. We know it, we’ve seen it, we’ve lived it! We are not asking for a hand out. We just want our insurance to help cover this treatment as they would any other medical treatment! And for the record, even when it is covered 80/20 it’s not cheap. The numbers would probably blow your mind. But to us, it is worth it. We love our sweet Bridger to the moon and back a million times just the way he is, that is why we have to give him every skill we can, teach him as much as we possibly can so that he can reach his full potential whatever that may be…

So for now as the hustle and bustle of the New Year continues we will be quietly praying our guts out that SB57 will pass! We will be praying that legislators will open their hearts and hear our cries! We will be praying that this is our year! We will be praying that people and businesses in our neighborhoods will support us, support our son, support autism!

Candidly speaking, whether the bill passes or not, we will prevail. We have learned from our experience as parents of a child with special needs that for every door that is slammed in our face, there are lots of open windows if we look hard enough to find them. Thank you to those of you who are responsible for the open windows. They come in so many different shapes and sizes. They make a difficult journey easier. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

We will keep fighting. We will keep pushing forward. We will do whatever it takes to help our amazing little blonde boy whose presence in our lives brings joy that cannot be explained in words. “To know him is to love him” a truer statement has never been spoken…

“All you need is love. All you need is love. All you need is love, love. Love is all you need.”—The Beatles

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