By Cathy Jameson
Reading several parent testimonies that were
shared with me and also submitted to the Oversight and Government Reform
Committee for the record in response to the Congressional Hearings on Autism
brought me to a place I try not to visit. It’s a place where Every now
and then I find myself sobbing uncontrollably slumped in a corner in my kitchen
on the cold tile floor. I sit there unable to move. Holding my
chest as overwhelming emotions wash over me, I try to make sense of what has
happened and what didn’t have to happen. I shake my head back and forth
without even realizing that I am shaking while screaming in my head (and
sometimes out loud). Last week the pain and sadness had me in that place
again crying, "Why? Why Ronan? Why all of these
children? For the love of God, WHY?!”
Those stories i cried through are testimonies
that are now part of a permanent record of the investigation regarding the rise
in the US autism rates. Each documents and provides intimate details
about normal births, perfect APGAR scores, beautiful babies handed to doting
parents and what followed when parents submitted to what their doctors deemed,
and our government approved, as best.
Every single testimony.
Each one I read was full of facts about perfects
babies, facts pertaining to vaccine injury, facts about how typical childhoods
disappeared, facts about future fears stemming from false information delivered
as truth. All of these testimonies were full of undeniable, hard-core facts.
Line by line the stories were full of horror and
read like a science fiction novel turned medical investigation mystery.
Characters are innocent children experiencing full-body eczema, multiple food
allergies, cyclical vomiting and chronic diarrhea. Their communication
turned to screaming bouts having replaced baby babbling or first words while
seeking relief from pressure and pain by head banging the floor or the walls.
Lists of the new “normal” fill the pages:
Severe gut problems.
Immune system failure.
Special education placement.
Every single one of the testimonies revealed
more evidence to support what any interest or research group would need to say
that enough is enough to today's vaccine schedule. Every single parent
stated the obvious—that their child was normal. That vaccines were
introduced. And that life is anything but normal
now. Loss of time, money and faith in the system that
encouraged an inadequately researched but heavily promoted vaccine program
remained throughout the testimonies. While every single story is different,
every single story had the same theme: our children are sick, it didn’t have to
be like this and vaccines contributed in some way.
For some fortunate few whose children have
responded, either to diet, intensive one-on-one therapy or several years’ worth
of treatment, parents shared their child’s current successes. Only
through the parents’ persistence were they able to reverse much of the vaccine
damage. These stories included children being mainstreamed in regular
classrooms with no educational supports, that children are indistinguishable
from their peers and that they regained speech and can talk, play and make typical-kid
For the not so fortunate, testimonies included
worries about the future, about navigating the road ahead that will include
medical ignorance and medical nightmares, that a growing financial burden
looms, that the lack of school support and understanding is a constant concern
and that the unfortunate lack of insurance coverage causes great distress.
Interestingly, throughout those stories was
Now that we
know that you know about vaccines
and autism, please don't screw up this chance to finally do something to
prevent autism from affecting any more children.
A Parent Who is Encouraged but Watching Your
Last week we witnessed history when autism was
reintroduced in that Congressional Hearing. The conversations about what
was asked, and then offered as the truth, is far from being over.
Congress has a huge task to finish as they continue these conversations because
autism, the autism our children have been labeled with, isn’t an accurate
description or diagnosis and goes well beyond the 299.0 IDC-9 code.
It isn’t autism. It's medical.
It isn’t an epidemic. It’s an injustice.
It isn't going away. If things don’t
change, it's soon to be everywhere.
And, it isn't going to just affect children and
their families any more. It will one day cripple our nation as we begin
to lose a future workforce, thousands of potential tax payers and eventually
entire communities. Ignoring the autism epidemic for as long as it has been
ignored is one of the most tragic responses to parents and their children and
shows a complete disregard to human life. But, it isn’t too late to support
While sorting through those stories, our
stories, my hope is that we have given the committee more than enough
motivation to take many more forward steps to not only recognize the autism
epidemic but also to prevent it. What lies in their hands are what I hope
are thousands of accounts of indisputable proof that vaccines have caused more
harm than good. Yes, it's a crying shame that it took this long for asking
for and of acceptance of those facts, but I do believe we helped solidify
the need for much more action and quickly.
Our children are getting older. Some will
get sicker and others will begin to age out. We’ve worked for how long
already? Five years, ten…and for our veteran parents, 20 years and more?
While I do certainly hope there can be an end in sight, I feel like the results
of last Thursday is another beginning for us—but a beginning where we finally
can offer a solution.
Most beginnings have an end.
I hope and pray that the influence our testimonies brought can bring an end to
the unfortunate results of the autism epidemic.
Cathy Jameson is a Contributing Editor for Age