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Autism at 18 I'll Love You Forever I'll Like You For Always

Headshot MIAHappy 18th birthday to our beautiful daughter Mia. Do you remember the book, Love You Forever? It's about a boy who grows up to care for his mother, just as she cared for him. It has a creepy edge to it (at least that's what I always thought) but I used to sing to Mia, "I'll love you forever, I'll like you for always, as long as I'm living my baby you'll be."

I never expected those words to ring so true. But here we are. We've filed guardianship papers, are preparing trusts so family can help the children when they are older - and old - and I've stopping crying. This is a tough road, friends. And I'd be lost without my AofA family, my autism family, and my "real" family meaning those family members who have stuck by us and show their love and care for my girls in so many ways.

OK, maybe I haven't stopped crying just yet.

Houes of Cards 160Kim Stagliano is Managing Editor of Age of Autism. Her novel,  House of Cards; A All I Can Handle 50 pixel Kat Cavicchio romantic suspense is available from Amazon in all e-formats now. Her memoir, All I Can Handle I'm No Mother Teresa is available in hardcover, paperback and e-book.




Happy (belated) Birthday to Beautiful Mia ! I have not stopped crying either, and am not sure I ever will ... I thought I had grieved for all the things our kids may never be able to do, but each year brings another painful reminder. It took all my control not to cry at court when guardianship was granted to me for Son #1 this fall - we were required to "declare him incompetent". My heart breaks for you & Mark, and although our roads are similar, I can never really know your pain, sorrow, and heartache. BUT, (and this is a Big but), you have stood SO strong in the face of this challenge, helped a countless number of people, and, most importantly, fought relentlessly for the best for all three of your girls. You have long had my respect and admiration !!
xx oo


Kim, have you read the book, Gut and Psychology Syndrome (GAPS) by Natasha Campbell -Mcbride? I just read it this year and it is amazing. My 3 kids and I are on the program with nice changes. There is a chapter on epilepsy. Dr. McBride recovered her son with autism. I think all our kids should be on this program. I hope you look into this for your lovely daughters.




Happy Birthday to Mia! My Alex turns 21 tomorrow. Instead of going out drinking with friends, as most young men his age might do, he wants his dad and me to take him to Walmart. It's not the life we would have chosen for him, but he's happy with simple things. Nonetheless, I keep fighting for him to have the best life and praying that he will one day be independent.

Lin Wessels

A very happy 18th birthday to Mia!! The time goes by too quickly! Wishing each of you much love, peace and happiness.


Wow already 18!
Happy birthday to Mia - wish you all the best - all the way from Norway!

My son celebrated his birthday today too. Can't belive he is 13 today...

Full steam ahead - GFCF, HBOT, B12... :-)


A tough road, indeed. My son turns 8 next month. I feel the relentless march of time with each and every birthday. No one around ever understands why I hate it so. You've captured it completely.

Thank you for sharing, Kim.

Donna L.

Happy Birthday, beautiful, happy, healthy Mia.

(I always thought that book had a major creep factor to it too. Something inherently unnatural about permanent, perpetual parenting. Don't you just hate foreshadowing?)


Bless your heart (and theirs too). You're a great momma, not just to your own babies, but helping the mommas coming up behind you with our own little rainbow kids. Thank you for all that you have done!


So much has been stolen from not just our kids but parents too.

Years ago - I know you probably dreamed that about this time in Mia's life you would be buying a refrig for a dorm room.

But you have done some really amazing things and some very importanat work - - And I want to thank you for doing it.

You never know; Kim - still -- the future is not set in stone - ever! You still don't know what the future will bring.

Teresa Conrick

I so hear you, Kim. The depth of emotion in this autism epidemic can never be measured.

Love to you all and best birthday wishes for beautiful, Mia. Never give up.

Jeff Ransom

Happy Birthday Mia!

As a member of the AOA family thank you Kin for all you do. I will love you forever and will like you for always.

PS. Your daughter is such a pretty/beautiful little girl.


Cat Jameson

I've been thinking about you and Mia all week knowing this day was coming. Hugs to you both, forever and always.

first do no harm

Happy Birthday beautiful Mia.

Kim, I know you'll enter the next stage of your journey with Mia with the same perseverance, courage, warmth and wit that have become your trademark as a mom, an advocate and a friend. Many blessings to you and your family. :-)


Love the book, and as always, love your perspective.

victor pavlovic

Happy Birthday Mia.

Lori Orrico

Happy Happy Birthday Miss Mia!


Mia is so lovely.

And you are a wonderful mother.

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