Parents

'This Is Autism' Photo Series Celebrates Simple But Major Milestones

“For kids with autism, every milestone matters and should be celebrated.”
04/20/2017 01:02pm ET | Updated April 20, 2017

For the roughly one in 68 kids in the U.S. with autism spectrum disorder, completing seemingly simple tasks can be huge milestones.

In honor of Autism Awareness Month, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta’s Marcus Autism Center created “This Is Autism,” a beautiful photo series highlighting a group of children who frequently visit the center.

“The photos capture each child’s greatest achievement after undergoing therapy,” a representative for CHOA told The Huffington Post.

“For kids with autism, every milestone matters and should be celebrated,” she added. “So we set out to capture those special moments ― the little things that they’re now able to do as a family after visiting Marcus Autism Center.”

Keep scrolling to see photos and read about the accomplishments of five children with autism.

Quinn, 3

Jason Hales/Marcus Autism Center
Jason Hales/Marcus Autism Center

“Before going to therapy, I had a difficult time dropping Quinn off at daycare. Most days, I would be late for work and stay with her because she was so upset. Now, she initiates the hug and kiss when I drop her off.” ― Quintin Harris, Dad

Gavi, 9

Jason Hales/Marcus Autism Center
Jason Hales/Marcus Autism Center

“Gavi has come a long way. We couldn’t function at home prior to treatment. He didn’t acknowledge his younger brother, and they never played together. Now, they are best buddies and have a really sweet relationship.” ― Lauren Surden, Mom

Isaac, 7

Jason Hales/Marcus Autism Center
Jason Hales/Marcus Autism Center

“At this time last year, 7-year-old Isaac wouldn’t ask for things. Instead, he would take my hand and lead me to what he wanted. I never knew what he was thinking or feeling because he couldn’t express himself. Today, it’s like he’s never met a stranger. He interacts with everyone he meets and loves to order food from his favorite restaurants.” ― Keely Wright, Mom

Ainsley, 7

Jason Hales/Marcus Autism Center
Jason Hales/Marcus Autism Center

“Last year, trips to the grocery store were hard for us. The lights, crowds and noises would be too overwhelming for Ansley. Since completion of the Feeding Disorders Program, she now loves shopping trips ― particularly the macaroni aisle!” ― Mary Mullikin, Mom

Ethan, 4

Jason Hales/Marcus Autism Center
Jason Hales/Marcus Autism Center

“Ethan struggled with communication and understanding his family. After just seven months of therapy, he can now understand me. He is starting to ask for things he wants, and his vocabulary and expressiveness grows day by day.” ― Haley Lindau, Mom