Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Disability Acceptance and the "It Crowd"

"To no human charter am I indebted my rights..." This quote really struck a cord with me because there are so many of us in society who are fighting for acceptance.  I am an advocate for autism acceptance in hopes that my children will be given the same opportunities in this world as everyone else...but is acceptance something that we should be fighting for? Is it something that should be earned? The answer is NO!

Acceptance should be automatic...something we have without the interference of others. A foregone conclusion. We are not indebted to others for our rights, yet we're placed in these categories of "normal" and "regular" with a "them" and an "us" mentality.

Our society is and has always been one huge clique...you either fit in or you don't. It's like trying to get accepted by the it crowd at school based on their standards, at their discretion of whether you have what it takes to fit in with them.

My children and so many others with disabilities or whatever the situation should not have to fight for acceptance. They should just be allowed to live life! If we are not indebted to others for our rights, why does the need for acceptance even exist?

Friday, January 22, 2016

My Life My Autism

Please check out my website : www.mylifemyautism.com

I also want to encourage you to use social media as a means of creating awareness and advocating in support of whatever cause that is close to your heart. Start a blog, create a website...do whatever is necessary to bring the important issues into the spotlight. 

Do you...and do it WELL!

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Early Diagnosis+ Early Interventions = Better Outcomes ( E+ E = B)

Autism is life changing in so many ways. That's why it's so important to have a diagnosis as early as possible. Your child's pediatrician is instrumental in explaining and helping you understand the various developmental stages.

Not all children reach stages of development at the same time, but find out when you should start to be concern. Trust your instincts as a parent. An affirmative autism diagnosis is not the end of the world. It is the beginning of a new way of life.

Interventions can help improve areas like speech, social behavior,  functional behavior and learning skills. Just like with anything else, children will respond to interventions differently. Rate and level of success is based on the individual.

So remember Early Diagnosis (E) + Early Interventions (E) = Better Outcomes (B).


Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Telling Our Stories

It's time for us to start telling our stories...individuals with autism, their families, parents,  significant others need to speak out about our lived experiences in hopes of inspiring others, bringing awareness to autism and taking ownership of how autism is portrayed in the media.

Telling our story inspires someone else...it pushes for better acceptance and greater advocacy for autism. It also gives us a clearer perspective of the world around us by making us reach inward in order to draw out the emotions,  the truths, the realities that we experience every day.

Let's begin to tell our stories...

Early Diagnosis & Early Interventions

Talk to your child's pediatrician or other health care provider about any concerns that you have concerning your child's develop.

Monday, January 18, 2016

Parent 2 Parent

Being the parent of a child with a disability, there are a few things that you should know: No one can do what you do as a parent. No one will ever love your children, defend your children or cry for your children the way that you do.

Even in moments of self-doubt (and there will be plenty!), know that you were CHOSEN to be the parent of an amazing child. Like me, you worry about your children's present as well as their future. You're ready to fight for your children's needs, their happiness at all costs...even if it means you're perceived as "difficult." Trust your instincts when it comes to what is in your child's best interest, even if others around you do not agree.

From one parent 2 another, you are awesome...you are strong...you are my hero!

Friday, January 15, 2016

Single Parenting Children with Special Needs

Please check out my guest blog at www.themogulmommies.com in the Health & Wellness section.

New Resource for Parents of Children with Autism

Looking for a great place to connect with other parents of children with autism? I was recently introduced to the My Autism Team community and so far it's been great! I really feel like I have found a place where people like me can discuss our day or experiences without judgment. None of us have all of the answer, which is the epitome of parenthood...but at least we can support each other along the way. I encourage you to check it out,,,sign up is free. There are no sales pitches, solicitations to do research or any of the "extras." Connect at www.myautismteam.com.

Also, please check out my website at www.mylifemyautism.com...

Have an AWESOME weekend!
#raisingautismawareness  #supportingautismacceptance

Monday, January 11, 2016

Mommy Confession

I have to admit that I still have bad days...my oldest son was diagnosed with autism over three years ago but there's no "getting use to it." You simply take it one day at a time on little sleep, a whole lot of uncertainty and hope that you have enough energy to make it through the day. I resist the urge to ask "why me?" but, instead ask for the wisdom and insight to be the best mom that I can be.

With that being said, this weekend was particularly rough when, after an eye exam, I was bluntly told that my son was basically blind without glasses.

Thankfully corrective lenses are working for him, otherwise he could be declared legally blind. I really felt like someone had punched me in the stomach and I had a small breakdown that lasted for much of the weekend. The hardest thing in life has got to be the knowledge that you, as a parent, can't always make everything okay. Some things are well beyond your control and you learn to accept your limitations.

But my hope remains the same...that throughout the course of this journey as a mom, that I'm doing something right even when there's so much wrong...

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Cultural Responsive & Special Education

Very proud and excited to be presenting with my friend and colleague, Dr. Sharita Crossen,  at the North Carolina Council of Exceptional Children Conference in Pinehurst,  NC on January 28.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Tantrums vs. Meltdowns

I was totally intrigued when I first learned that tantrums and meltdowns were completely different. Like so many parents of children with autism, I absorb as much as I can about behaviors, strategies, sensory issues and the like. But now when I look at articles stating matter-of-factly the differences between tantrums and meltdowns, the thought came to my mind: Does it really matter?

When my son is screaming at the top of his lungs at Walmart or taking the first available object off the shelf at Target and throwing it onto the floor like a madman, knowing the difference between a tantrum and a meltdown really doesn't mean a whole lot to me. At that very moment,  I just want my kid to be happy again or at least calm enough to all of me to finish my grocery shopping (wishful thinking, of course).

The differences between tantrums and meltdowns are very eye-opening...but this #autismmom just wants to make it through the day! 

#justathought #longday