Lessons from a Complex Child

One Family's Journey Untangling the Mysteries of Regression, Diagnosis, and Recovery

by Ellen Woodbriar

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Book Details

Language : English
Publication Date : 21/09/2020

Format : Softcover
Dimensions : 5.5x8.5
Page Count : 294
ISBN : 9781982254988
Format : Hardcover
Dimensions : 5.5x8.5
Page Count : 294
ISBN : 9781982255008

About the Book

At twenty-nine months, my son Jackson had met all of his developmental milestones. He spoke in full sentences, knew his ABCs and colors, had well-developed fine and gross motor skills, was affectionate, had perfect eye contact, loved to talk, and was extremely social.

Six months later, just after Jackson’s third birthday, neurologists couldn’t rule out that he might have a malignant form of epilepsy, some form of neurodegenerative disorder, have regressive encephalopathy, be autistic, or have a pervasive developmental disorder (PDD).

What could possibly have caused the regression he experienced over a four-month period, the irritability he was exhibiting, the sixty to eighty seizures he was enduring each day, and the autistic-like behaviors he had developed?

Although I’m not a physician and don’t work in the healthcare profession, I have lived through the regression and recovery of my own child. This experience has led me to form the opinion that, potentially, too many children are being put on the autism spectrum. Some children, like Jackson, with ASD-like symptoms are not autistic and therefore are not receiving the full breadth of intervention that could potentially help them recover. Do I have proof of this? No, because from my experience, and up until this point, there has not been enough research that the medical profession recognizes as reliable made available to the public or to parents like me to identify the root cause of some symptoms.

The purpose of my telling this story is not to give anyone, or any family, false hope but, with good reason, to encourage you to leave no stone unturned in treating a medically complex child. It takes passionate determination and tenacity to find underlying and seemingly hidden causes of complex illnesses and to see the journey through to recovery when possible.

About the Author

Ellen Woodbriar is a dedicated mother, wife, sister, and friend. As a program manager, she spent most of her professional career helping organizations through transformational change. Personal experiences with her family, friends, and close colleagues led her through her own transformation resulting in this book, retirement from corporate life, more time with her family, and a career in life coaching. If you are dealing with a medically complex situation and exploring diagnosis, please visit the Facebook page, Lessons from a Complex Child. Elizabeth has established this page for families like ours to share our stories, benefit from each other’s knowledge, and feel supported in our journeys. We are not alone. You may also contact Ellen directly through e-mail at Ellen.Woodbriar@gmail.com.