Our journey in the Autism Spectrum

Posts tagged ‘awareness’

Forget the Hate. Celebrate! ~ My Autism Awareness Day Post 2013

Every time I think about the subject, or see a blog post, or article, or discussion about it I immediately become EXTREMELY anxious! Like an I-can’t-breathe kind of anxious. Folks within the autism community are STILL “picking sides”. I generally make a run for the hills to avoid any possible confrontation with it.  I feel as if I could easily hyperventilate just trying to write this post.

A year ago, I wrote this.  And here we are again. It’s April. Autism Awareness Month.  Sadly, what I wrote last year still feels very true to me today.  I’m disappointed. It makes me anxious and sad and tired.

I.just.don’t.get.it.

I will support Autism Speaks, the Autism Society , Asperger Syndrome and High Functioning Autism Association (ASHA), the National Autism Association, LifeSkills/TouchPoint Autism Services, and many other autism organizations.  I want to support and promote ANY and ALL of the wide SPECTRUM of organizations and individuals that are working positively toward helping ALL others in this great big, and very diverse, spectrum of AUTISM. We need awareness at all levels of autism so we can promote compassion and understanding for ALL on the autism spectrum, no matter where on this spectrum they may be! It hurts my heart to think that some in our “community” still can’t see that.

Perhaps I should be glad that I don’t get the hate. I’ve got no room in my life or in my heart for more negativity and bitterness. April is Autism Awareness Month and I know that most of my readers are highly aware of autism every damn day, as am I. In 2012 I followed up my post linked above with this post.  And this too still rings true.  Positively so.

Because of all of this I’ve decided that I want to use this month of awareness to CELEBRATE autism. I will celebrate my son, his differences, his challenges, and the amazing progress he continues to make! I will celebrate our educators, counselors, therapists and physicians who help support and encourage us along the way! I will celebrate our whole family for rising up and overcoming the challenges that autism often brings into our lives. In doing this perhaps others, both within the autism community and those outside of it, will learn by our POSITIVE example. And really, isn’t this what we want to accomplish all year long?!?!

Welcome to April! Celebrating Autism Month!

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Autism Awareness: Video Links!

As as the month of April comes to a close I wanted to share some really beautiful autism awareness videos that have been made this month by a few of my blogger and Facebook “friends”.

Parents with children on the autism spectrum know that autism awareness doesn’t just happen for one month out of the year. It’s something that we do DAILY! 24/7/365! Some days it’s easy…but many more days it’s just damn hard!

I know these videos that I share will help to carry me through those rough days and I hope it will help to remind others that these are the faces of our beautiful children on the autism spectrum and they are worth fighting for every day, all year long!

Help us spread autism awareness, understanding, and acceptance!

Please take a little time to watch these wonderful videos and also check out these moms’ blogs/ Facebook pages!

Also, Henry, my dude, makes a cameo appearance in a few of these! See if you can spot him!   😉

Video “But S/he Doesn’t Look Autistic by stark.raving.mad.mommy

Video “More than a Number”  by No Guile: Life and Stories from Autism

Videos “Autism Awareness” and “Autism Awareness -Part 2”  by We Care About We Care About Someone with Autism

Video of Graceland Lighting It Up Blue with WiLd WoRld oF AuTism and Autism Speaks

Video “Autism We Are 1 in 70”  by Lisa F. (made before the new number of 1 in 54 came out!)

Video “Autism Awareness 2012: What Are You Waiting For” by Autism Moms

 

A very big THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart for all the moms out there that made such amazing videos of our kiddos and to those who share community and support on Facebook and in blogs. You all make me feel not so alone!  ~Karen

Plain and Simple

April is over. Autism Awareness month has passed for another year. This past month has been filled with blue lights and t-shirts, blog posts and discussions. I have been overwhelmed by the support of our family and friends. This means more to me that I can ever express! Knowing those of you who were willing to turn on a blue light or wear a puzzle piece t-shirt, or forward a blog or share my Chameleon Facebook page to spread awareness to those who may not know or understand about Autism Spectrum Disorders means the world. And the tireless efforts of the parent-bloggers out there are incredible! (I refer to the list of some of my favorites listed down the right-hand side of my blog page).

But despite the added awareness, our daily lives have gone on pretty much same as usual.  We have our  ups and downs and our tribe is very well aware every day the impact that autism has on the entire family. And there are many days where part of me wishes we didn’t have to be so damn aware.

It’s tiresome. Exhausting. Many times I just want to be done with it. I don’t want to talk about it, read about it, or blog about it. And then I check my e-mail, my Facebook. I see that friends and family have commented on my page or on this blog, showing support, letting me know they are there for us! Everyday I get new blog post notifications and status updates from some of the most wonderful, inspiring and just plain amazing people…most of them moms, who write with such beauty and HEART, about their children, their lives with Autism. Their stories may not always be pretty or fun or upbeat but they are always beautiful. And all of this helps me to keep going for my son. To keep writing. To keep advocating. To keep learning. Perhaps that is why we haven’t been able to bring ourselves to change out our blue porch light. We must keep going.

I’ve been trying to search for just the right words to express just how huge my feelings of appreciation are for everyone. Two little words, “thank you”, just don’t seem enough. So, I ask each of you, and those of you with children on the Autism Spectrum will most certainly understand this, imagine someone you love so dearly that cannot express themselves or has trouble with even the most basic of tasks. The frustration of it all. And now, imagine that they completed a task or used their words for the first time…how something so plain and simple can feel so HUGE.

With that in mind, I say “thank you”.

April’s Blue Light Special: Autism Awareness

I have been stewing for days, weeks even, about how I could ever compose a moving, eloquent, and passionate blog post urging everyone I know and even those that I don’t know, to Light It Up Blue for Autism Awareness.  I can’t. (But see examples of such posts linked below). Today I have finally realized that the specific words don’t matter. What matters is to just get the word out there. They may not be pretty words or stated in the exact best way but I am putting them out there.

LIGHT IT UP BLUE FOR AUTISM AWARENESS!

There! Done! That being said, now I am asking a favor. If you are reading this post, I am talking to YOU! I am asking that you go out and get yourself a blue light bulb for your porch or any outdoor light and “Light It Up Blue” April 1st and 2nd to kick off World Autism Awareness Month. That’s it. That is what I am asking. Home Depot has even made displays to easily find these blue bulbs! (And for those of you with a “green” conscience, they come in fluorescents, also known as CFL’s,  too!).

For weeks my fellow mommy-bloggers have been publishing blog posts, writing letters, and organizing activities to spread the word about “Lighting It Up Blue” for Autism awareness. They are amazing writers and advocates not only their own children but for all of our children on the Autism Spectrum.  As usual, I am “tardy to the party” and now just trying to hitch a ride on their coattails.

If you read nothing more on this topic I implore you to do just two more simple things:  click here and read this! This is a letter to the President. Our President. Yep, at the White House. It was composed by a most amazing woman, Jess at A Diary of a Mom. So, that is step #1. Now, step #2 is to continue to read the cries and pleas of others out there in the comments section of that letter and to post a comment yourself! It’s easy! I did it: comment #56. Yours’ doesn’t have to be long. It can be just 4 words, “Light it up blue!“. Word on the autism street has it that this letter and comments is making its way all the way to the West Wing!

I hope at this point you are continuing to read this post. In case you are interested, here are a few more beautiful messages written by some of my favorite mommy-bloggers about Autism and Lighting it up Blue:

Aimee’s A Call to Arms at Red Shoes, Autism Blues. Kary at KOAutism regarding April 2nd and Mom-NOS with Don’t It Make My White House Blue. And last but certainly not least, my hilarious, wonderful, brilliant friend, Kara, with A  Message and Around The Stretch.

So, if you know our Rabinowitz tribe personally, please light it up blue for Henry!  Help us spread the word of awareness! If you don’t know our tribe, with 1 in 110 children (1 in 70 boys) on the Autism Spectrum, chances are you know someone affected by Autism! If you are hesitating about turning on the blue light bulb for fear of the questions your neighbors may ask, here are some things you can tell them:

*April 1st kicks off World Autism Awareness month and the Autism community is encouraging everyone to change their porch lights to a blue bulb April 1st and 2nd.

*What is Autism? Autism is a general term used to describe a group of complex developmental brain disorders known as Pervasive Developmental Disorders (PDD). This includes Autism, PDD-NOS and Asperger’s.

*Today, it is estimated that one in every 110 children is diagnosed with autism, making it more common than childhood cancer, juvenile diabetes and pediatric AIDS combined. An estimated 1.5 million individuals in the U.S. and tens of millions worldwide are affected by autism. Current estimates are that in the United States alone, one out of 70 boys is diagnosed with autism.

Any chance you get to spread the word about Autism, whether it be Lighting It Up Blue or simply sharing one of the above links, this blog post, or to share one of many links that come through Facebook, it would be greatly appreciated by the Rabinowitz tribe and the Autism Community as a whole.

In April we’ve got a Blue Light Special on Autism Awareness! It’s cheap, it’s easy! Light it up blue to help spread awareness!

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