Jenni Farley explains she doesn't want people to see "Greyson's journey" through only the "Jersey Shore" lens.
Jenni "JWoww" Farley is taking her fans behind the scenes of her son's progress, one year after being diagnosed with autism.
"I didn't want you guys to just see on "Jersey Shore," 'Oh, her son is in early intervention,'" Jenni explained in a video she posted to her YouTube page Tuesday.
After noticing a delay in Greyson's speech development, the reality star and her then-husband, Roger Mathews, flew to Orlando with their now-3-year-old "Bubby badass" to meet with a nutritional specialist "to get him on the right path to talking."
She revealed his autism diagnosis in November of last year and immediately hit the ground running.
Now, one year later and six months after starting We Care Autism's applied behavior analysis (ABA) services, Greyson's able to shyly look at the camera and say, "Hi, guys! Welcome back!" with the guidance of his proud mama.
Describing ABA as "one hell of an experience," JWoww noted that's partly due to the fact that "sometimes you really have to fight your insurance companies to get the best of the best for your children, which I have no problem doing for Greyson."
In the beginning of his ABA treatment, Greyson would spend two-to-three hours a day, three times a week, working with a therapist named Ashley, who still works with him in a one-on-one setting. He also received speech and occupational therapy at a local hospital.
"But over time and recently, we got approved for 30 hours a week of ABA, which is huge," Jenni announced, noting that the additional hours have "been a game-changer."
Now, Greyson's attending preschool for three hours a day, five days a week. And one of his ABA therapists, Steph, spends two of the three hours each day there with him "to really help him transition into the everyday world with people and little kids his own age."
Time-lapse footage of Greyson's sessions with Ashley showed just how impactful ABA has been on his development. He's able to say his name and age, tell you "Daddy's name" and "Mommy's name" and identify different animals, articles of clothing, pieces of furniture and musical instruments, even when Ashley shuffles around their pictures. He's also able to understand commands in sequences and perform them correctly -- or correct himself when he makes a mistake. (Can you touch nose, blow kiss? Can you clap hands, arms up?)
The smile on Jenni's face and the tears in her eyes as she watched her son count from one to 18 gave us chills.
Greyson also sang his ABCs for the camera and pointed to his ears, nose, chin, etc. when asked to do so. He had a few slip-ups, but with the proper guidance and reassurance, he was able to correct himself.
"So he has two types of presents when he does something well," Jenni explained to the camera. "Obviously, Greyson loves YouTube like the majority of kids out there, so he gets a couple seconds of YouTube. And if he goes potty, he requests, a lot of times, a 'circle,' which is a coin. And he's allowed a piece of gum out of his gumball machine with his two favorite colors."
"I want a circle," Greyson then said to his mom, who replied that he first had to "go peepees in the potty." According to JWoww, Greyson's "kicking ass and taking names" in the potty-training department.
"Going from not acknowledging your name or being able to sit for literally 30 seconds, to doing I can't even explain it..." Jenni said, trailing off. "I feel like by Christmas, he should have more of an update 'cause of how fast he's been [progressing]. Shootin' from the hip, I feel like our next goal will be fully potty-trained, one through 20 on his own, maybe more, I don't know."
Looking down at her son, she added, "I feel like you're just taking over the world."
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