Dear Mary Coyle,
Words cannot express how indebted we feel to you for helping us save our son from the shackles of autism. Luca was born a beautiful, healthy baby who thrived for the first year and a half of his life. He spoke early, was incredibly social and affectionate and met all his milestones. By two years old, we noticed some disturbing changes in our son’s behaviour. He had lost desire to socialize, was withdrawn, repetitive, really hyper and had horrible sleep disturbances. He stopped responding to his name and was climbing anything and everything. By November 2010, at his two-year appointment, our paediatrician expressed concern and proceeded to assess him for Autism. He told us that he was probably autistic but that we should get a more thorough assessment. I prayed that God would lead me to whatever path necessary to help heal him. We had to make him better. Everything we read about autism was so grim. The words “lifelong disorder” did NOT sit well with us. How can a normal, healthy boy suddenly have a developmental disorder? I continued my research and was confused by all the information on the topic. I was drawn to research, which addressed autism as a disease of the body, affecting the brain and NOT solely a brain issue. Certain things made Luca sick and his body was no longer able to detoxify and therefore it was affecting his brain function and development. So, cleanse the body, eliminate the toxins, strengthen his immunity and he can heal. This explanation made sense to me and above all gave me the hope we so desperately needed. So, off we went on our journey to heal our son.
We began with bringing Luca to a Naturopathic doctor who immediately began diet intervention and supplementation. We saw wonderful gains with the new diet and were even more certain that this approach was going to help us get our son back. We then began working with a DAN doctor and while we witnessed good gains we unfortunately saw painful regression and it became more difficult to determine which remedies were helping Luca and which were causing regression. It became increasingly difficult to continue to give Luca the long list of supplements and detoxifying remedies. We could not bear watching our son suffer anymore! We knew in our hearts that there was something more we needed to do, that there was something else out there to help Luca truly recover!
In October 2011, when we were feeling the most frustration, we met Mary. We listened to her explain how Luca’s body could not handle the “detox” we were forcing him to do. She explained Homotoxicology and suggested we strengthen his organs, his Immune system and slowly start to detoxify. Mary’s approach was by far the most gentle and the least difficult to follow. She provided so much insight, so much comfort and always prepared us well with what Luca would experience while on a new protocol. For the first time we knew what to expect. If she said he would be emotional, he was emotional. When she said Luca would have crazy bowel movements that is exactly what happened. Finally, we felt confident in what we were doing and that we were not treating Luca like a Guinea Pig. As a result, Luca experienced extraordinary developmental surges after each protocol. His eye contact improved, his receptive language was finally on par with his expressive language. He lost those horrible bags under his eyes. His belly was no longer distended. He loved playing with kids. He was happy. He slept. He was learning. He was engaged. The best part was that Luca LOVED going to see her, unlike other “doctor” visits. He always seemed so calm and cooperative. This was so reassuring to us. In his way, Luca was telling us that Mary was the one, the one caregiver who truly had the key to unlock our little boy out of this prison forever.
In addition to her own treatment Mary was always knowledgeable of other cutting edge therapies available that might help our son. She introduced us to Dr. Ingels who put our son through a de-sensitization program that helped significantly reduce his sensitivities, and made our life a little easier as we were able to introduce our son to a wider variety of foods without witnessing any painful behavioural side effects.
This past March we decided to have Luca re-assessed. We wanted an objective third party to evaluate if Luca still met the ASD criteria (as parents we lost our objectivity a long time ago). We are happy to report that Luca no longer fits the criteria; in fact, the psychologist commented that he is not even close to being on the spectrum. Luca is not perfect by any means as we still have some self regulation issues to work through, however they are manageable and in time we will get through it.
We have been introduced to many wonderful alternative medical practitioners on our son’s journey to recovery and are extremely grateful for their courage in exploring unconventional methods to tackle this disorder. Each one of them has helped Luca on this journey, however Mary certainly stands out amongst all of them and we thank God everyday for bringing her into our life. Luca experienced the steadiest gains with the least amount of regression, under Mary’s care. Whenever he did experience affects of the remedies, they were always well supported. Mary was always available to guide us through difficult times. Luca continued to flourish, to grow, to become more “neurotypical” Teachers, therapists, and family could not believe how much more he would play and talk. This child would scream every time we left our house and now he was asking to go to his cousin’s house. He never noticed if someone walked into the room, and was now running to the door when the doorbell rang. Luca never slept through the night and was now sleeping soundly. He was eating anything we fed him and enjoyed all textures of food. We were watching a miracle happen before our very eyes!!
One thing that we learned through this process is that while some parent’s report that magical remedy on the first attempt that helped recover their child this is probably not the case for the vast majority. It is at times a very painful journey and some remedies don’t always work out as expected, however over time you will find the approach that works for your child and in the process you will be making them healthier.
I hope this note helps parents who may be struggling through this process, as we know there have been many inspirational notes from other parents that have certainly helped us along the way.
Paul and Cathy