Why Autism Awareness Matters

Why Autism Awareness Matters

April is Autism Awareness month. Chloe is on the autism spectrum. I rarely list autism as one of her diagnoses because it’s more of a symptom of other diagnoses. However, I recognize autism as part of our lives and am always studying how to help her deal with the sensory and social issues that go along with that. We also have a nephew with Aspergers. He is such a sweet kid and is extra sweet and sensitive with Chloe. We sure love him. There are so many conditions and issues to be “aware” of, it’s hard to know when and how it can matter to you or what you can actually do about it. Well, I would suggest that autism awareness matter to everyone. Why? Because it is prevalent and the numbers are rising. There are over 70 million people with autism worldwide. That means understanding is crucial and research is important. That means many children and their parents are in need of support. Being aware and showing support means we can have more conversations about autism: about what it looks like, how it affects those with autism and their families, how legislation can be reformed to facilitate much needed community changes for those with autism, and how anyone can include and celebrate a child with autism without overstimulating them. “Not everything that steps out of line, and thus ‘abnormal,’ must necessarily be ‘inferior.” – Hans Asperger So what can you do? How can we help in the vast sea of many needs bring about change and conversation about autism? My suggestion is this: anything! What I plan to...
Cerebral Palsy Is So Limited

Cerebral Palsy Is So Limited

A few years ago, I had been feeling overwhelmed and victimized by Chloe’s special needs. I was feeling a little bit like Chloe’s diagnosis had stolen the life I had planned and completely taken over everything. I felt like everything I had ever wanted had been indefinitely delayed because of Chloe’s developmental delays and I did not like feeling as though I had no control in my own life. Well, I learned long ago that when I start to feel like a victim, I have to dig deep and find a way to become the victor instead. In this case, I was stumped…. I felt defeated. But I didn’t stop trying. I kept seeking a way to overcome these feelings. My answer finally came when I was looking for something to uplift a friend who is battling cancer. I found this print: What Cancer Cannot Do. Its message spoke to me. Please don’t misunderstand. I’m not trying to compare Cerebral Palsy to cancer. Cancer is undoubtedly a much different battle. But I believe the underlying message of that inspirational print works with many diagnoses. When I read it, the victim within me was quickly diminished by a new sense of empowerment. Yes, Cerebral Palsy has changed things, but it has not won and it will not win. It has given Chloe disabilities that have affected our lives, but it has not and will not disable our ability to live a happy and fulfilling life. It has not and cannot take away anything that really matters! In honor of this new-found sense of empowerment, I created this word art. The words are very similar to...
Autism Triggers

Autism Triggers

Have a hard time understanding Autism? You aren’t alone. The truth is, I don’t know too much about it, many people don’t. In order to help build acceptance and understanding for different diagnosis we are finding great information and passing it on. Here is a fantastic info graphic found via Pinterest that will help you and I learn what can cause stress in a person with Autism.   To see the graphic in more details please visit the site that created it, feel free to poke around while you are there. Pediatric Occupational Therapy Services, LLC. You can even leave a comment thanking them for spreading awareness and understanding. Image courtesy of imagerymajestic at...