Thursday, August 29, 2013

Autism Awareness Turns Into Action

(Originally posted on my personal blog, Tired Mom.)

To say that I've been a lazy blogger would be a serious understatement. Believe me, I know exactly just how badly I've been slacking, and I wish I had an adequate excuse. Truth is, I just haven't felt like it (though I do plan on getting back in the swing of things once the kids are accustomed to their new school schedules). Today, however, I'm blogging because I absolutely HAVE to tell you about the amazing gifts made in the last few months in honor of my family. It's worth taking a few minutes to write about.

In late May of this year, I received a letter from an autism organization. It stated that a family member on my husband's side made a donation in my daughter's name. I'd be lying if I didn't admit I got a bit choked up. I was so touched and moved by their generosity. It means more than I can say just how grateful I am that someone took the time to help children with autism, all because they were thinking about my little girl.

As if the above event wasn't enough to make me grateful, I then received a card in the mail yesterday. It was from a long time friend of mine (friends since the 6th grade). They sent me pictures from when I attended their wedding back in April. At first I was smiling from looking at the pretty photos (I love pictures!) and then I began reading the card. I literally gasped. I was filled with so much joy (and a slight shock factor) and tears came to my eyes. Here is a small excerpt:

"In honor of our guests, we made a charitable donation to a local cause. Thanks to you, a classroom of non-verbal autistic children will have sufficient ink to create visual aids. They will be able to better communicate with classmates, teachers, and parents."

WOW. Can we say, "AWESOME!"?

Because it seriously is. It's awesome and amazing and I am just flabbergasted that these people - to celebrate their wedding - made a donation to help kids with autism.

They said, "Thanks to you..." but in reality, it's thanks to them. It's thanks to selfless and caring people like them who take the time to figure out how they can help children with autism in their local community. What truly makes a difference are people who are autism aware - who then take that awareness and turn it into action.

To our family and friends above, my heart is so full thanks to you. The fact that you were actively thinking about us, and then continued the train of thought to other families affected by autism as well. You did more than just think about us; you did more than just think about autism - you did something about it.


And now I make this plea to those of you reading this: If you can find a way to help people with autism in your community, DO IT! Every little bit helps, because autism awareness is only beneficial when it turns into action!

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Connecticut School Tragedy and Autism Link

I made this statement on Facebook earlier today:
"I need to say something. I understand the media has a job to do. I understand they are trying to figure out what prompted yesterday's tragic event in Connecticut. It has been stated the shooter had Asperger's Syndrome. To that I say - So What?! That is not a reason for killing innocent children. That is not a reasonable explanation for such a heinous crime. There are millions of people with ASD around the world and most of them will be the VICTIMS of crimes, NOT the instigators. So I would like to take this moment to ask the media not to say this man committed this crime simply because he had Asperger's. I would like to remind the general public that having an autism spectrum disorder does not automatically mean that a person is unstable and violent. Most people with ASD are kind and caring. Yesterday's events are the result of a rare and random act of violence from someone who snapped and lost touch with reality - not someone with Asperger's who decided to kill people."

Articles regarding autism and the elementary school shooting:

1- The Connecticut Shootings: What's autism got to do with it?

2- Connecticut school shooting thrusts autism into national spotlight:

3- ASAN Statement on Media Reports Regarding Newton, CT Shooting:

4- Statement by Autism Speaks: "Our hearts go out to the families and town of Newtown, Conn. in the wake of this heartbreaking event. Several media outlets are reporting that the shooter might have had an autism spectrum disorder. Some have also inaccurately reported that there is a linkage between autism and planned violence. We ask that blame not be placed on people with disabilities or disorders in the midst of these types of tragedies and that everyone keep the families of Newtown in their prayers."

5-  Connecticut school shooting: Shooter Lanza may have had a form of autism:

6- A Gunman, Recalled as Intelligent and Shy, Who Left Few Footprints in Life:

7- Man named in Connecticut shooting recalled as shy, awkward:,0,3373353.story

Monday, October 15, 2012

Auism News for Monday, October 15, 2012

Hope you all had a good weekend!

1- Advocates: New autism law offers little help:

2- Cardinal Glennon autism study need children for assessment:

3- Mouse studies point out limits of Rett syndrome treatment:

4- Video: Unrolling the motor deficit in autism:

5- Temple Grandin: Autism Is Not My Identity:

6- Are Pesticides A Key Driver Of The Autism Increase?

7- Accepting Autism: one father's path to understanding his son:

8- Adding Up Autism Risks:

9- MURRIETA: Documentary about autism to be shown:

10- Oregon safety with autism pulls in touching interception:

11- New study says autism may be partly genetic:

12- Helping children with special needs achieve their potential:

13- Horses help children with disabilities move forward:

14- University of Missouri Thompson Center for Autism and Neurodevelopmental Disorders Selects Prometheus Research to Build Integrated Autism Database:

15- Handwriting study points to motor, memory problems in autism:

16- Comedy Central's Night of Too Many Stars:

17- Classroom Yoga Improves Behavior of Kids with Autism:

18- Chickens kept by Florida family as therapy for autistic son found beheaded in backyard coop:

19- Jon Stewart's autism benefit features unlikely pairings:

20- Computer hacker Gary McKinnon waiting with "anxiety, but hope" ahead of extradition decision:

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Autism News for Wednesday, October 10, 2012

1- The Lion King's Rod Thomas on Autism-Friendly Performance:

2- iPad Apps Can Support Evidence-Based Practice:

3- Site for Free PECS:

4- MEEP! Kids Tablet (on Android platform):

5- Making Halloween Fun For Kids With Autism:

6- Autism- What Every Parent Should Know:

7- Environmental groups call for tougher pesticide regulations:

8- Arts centre for autistic kids:

9- Tips You Need to Know to Protect a Wandering Autistic Child:

10- Cambridge to track wandering elders, autistic children sing LoJack:

11- Autism center helps students, children with social skills:

12- Dad demands apology from Ann Coulter for using 'retarded' as an insult:

13- Golf has opened up the world for teen with autism:

14- Interview with Brian Johnston on the Landscape of Autism:

15- Grieving Barrow Mum Calls For Syndrome Awareness:

16- Autism resources around the world are extremely limited. Lack of resources leads to misunderstanding and mistreatment of individuals:

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Autism News for Tuesday, October 9, 2012

1- Linden High students rally around autistic classmate:

2- Autism in America: The epidemic no one is talking about (video):

3- Autistic Piedmont boy, 10, found in good condition by Oakland police:

4- Lawmakers protest DOE deals with large agencies for special education:

5- Annual Conference - Mount Sinai School of Medicine:

6- Theft of autistic son's iPad deprives assistance with basic living skills:|newswell|text|FRONTPAGE|s

7- Victory is Sweet for Autistic Teammates:

8- Top 10 books dedicated to Sensory Processing Disorder:

9- Laura Shumaker: Not a Regular Mom (video):

10- New Jersey Bookshop with a Mission - to Help Autistic Kids:

11- Study Roundup: Autism Diagnoses Remain Consistent Under New Criteria, Researchers Say:

12- Study links pesticides to childhood illnesses:

13- What marriage, love and Asperger's are all about:

14- Father and son launch exhibition at Hamilton Artists Inc:

15- FL teen finds MN fairy godmother thanks to magical Asperger's connection (video):