This is the story about a kid named Rafael who was born and diagnosed with Autism when he was very little. Although parents of Rafael were scared for their child at the start, they were aware that they have to support their child and all they had was to study and learn the best methods to raise him.
With the passage of time Rafael only continued to surprise not only his parents but also others with his learning capabilities because when he was only 7 years of age, he was able to speak over 9 different languages and is now also learning about composing music of his own.
Mother of Rafael named Juli Lanser Mayer shared the story of her son with the world, which is about how every child might hide something in them and they must never be misjudged on their appearance.
Rafael was only 2 years and 8 months of age when his parents got concerned as to how their son could not speak even a single word. This was an uncommon thing and following advice from a friend, the parents decided to visit a neuro pediatrician. He said neuro pediatrician on the first session made a diagnosis which changed the lives of Rafael and his garnets. Rafael suffered from a rare case of autism. Parents naturally did not agree with the first diagnosis and consulted with 3 more doctors but the diagnosis never changed.
Things felt a little bit weird for Rafael’s parents as they did not know what Autism really was. They got even more afraid after knowing that it had no cure but they got themselves calm with only one thing in mind; they need to give support to their child.
They started therapy for Rafael but even after many months, Rafael did not show any improvement. Doctors then suggested his parents to give him a tablet to see his interests. They were afraid but then accepted this suggestion and that is when Rafael started showing his interest in technology.
One day when he was browsing through YouTube, he started watching a video in Portuguese as he continued his therapy sessions. Rafael’s mother told, “One day he started a video that was an English song and it was at that moment I saw his eyes shine because of what he was listening and seeing. I knew right then that something has changed.” Since that day Rafael started showing interest in learning newer things and especially languages. The best and the most important part of it all was Rafael’s incredible memory which allowed him to code multiple languages in a fast manner and then pronounce them in a near-flawless manner.
Now several years later, Rafael is speaking 9 different languages which include English, Japanese, German, Russian, French, and Spanish. In order to study a language, Rafael starts learning one of them and then continues to another after he is done with the first one. He likes to communicate in English because it is his favorite language. Despite being born and living in Brazil; as his family speaks Portuguese, Rafael has it hard to pronounce the language.
Although Rafael speaks the German language, he did not like it too much. His mother also knows a little bit of German as she learned it during her studies but Rafael speaks very little in German. He gets angry when someone talks to him in German. Then one day another amazing thing happened as the boy started speaking German. She asked him, “So you do speak German in secret?” he did not know how to respond to this and got angry and closed his room’s door.
As for when he speaks Spanish, he finds it really funny and comical. As for English, he likes it very much but never corrects anyone if they mispronounce it unless they are someone close to him. Then he tries to help them.
Now skills of Rafael go beyond only the language. He has now a new love and that is for the musical instruments. His favorite instruments are piano, drums, xylophone, and keyboard. He has also started taking music classes and only after 3 of music sessions, he has started showing capabilities to learn things which people take 3 to 4 years to even start learning. Amongst many of his favorite musicians, he loves the singer named Raffa Torres. The fame of the boy reached the singer and he was impressed by it and called him on one of his DVD filming occasions. They met with Torres and Rafael got very happy that day.
Rafael’s mother believes that having a child with autism means that you get to see the world work in a different way from all of its perspectives. She is of the thought that one must not worry too much about the future and only then they will able to focus on what is in the present. Rafael has helped his parents become more loving, caring, and conscious. They have also become believers in the concept that potential is alive in each and every person on this planet.
Julia says, “You must always believe in the potential of your child no matter the situation. Study them hard for supporting them and to also trust your intuition. If a child of yours has autism, do not think of them as a burden but it can become a possibility for you to learn something new constantly. All the children in the world and especially one suffering from autism are all different in a liberating and genuine way.”
While Rafael has never mentioned his goal for life, his mother has a belief that one day he might become a translator and put his exceptional language learning capabilities to greater use.
At the moment, his parents do not want him to feel overwhelmed by any of the expectations or the admiring look of the public. They simply wish for his happiness and like for him to continue what he loves to do. They are sure of one thing that they will be with him to help him and protect him during his development.
Rafael also has 3 brothers who also give him encouragement at his life’s every step. Juli has planned to publish a book for sharing a story about Rafael in 2020.
Below is the video of Rafael reading a passage from a book in English.