Walk Now for Autism Speaks

Saturday March 31 is the first autism walk in Youngstown, Ohio and the boys and I will be there!

I’ve wanted to do a walk since Lucas was first diagnosed in 2009, but the location has been a deterrent. I hate driving in Pittsburgh and I’ve never been to Cleveland.

I’m not sure what to expect, but they have a lot of activities and things planned. Did someone say Starbucks? I’m looking forward to this opportunity to gather with others who have a loved one on the spectrum or who may be on the spectrum themselves. Whether we like it or not we share a common bond.

Walks like this not only help raise money for Autism Speaks, but they also raise awareness about a disorder that affects 1 in 100 children.

Since Lucas was diagnosed I have made it my goal to educate as many people as possible. If you stare or make comments because you think what he is doing is strange you will probably get an earful…in the nicest way possible.

My son is not Rain Man. In fact, I haven’t met a child with autism who can do what he did. People need to realize that Rain Man was Hollywood. I’m not saying that there aren’t individuals on the spectrum who are like that, I’m just saying the character as portrayed by Dustin Hoffman is not the norm.

I was once asked “Well what can he do?” in reference to Lucas’ autism. I had to stop and think about that question. It’s more like what can’t he do? The future though not the one I pictured when he was a baby, is wide open. I have to have hope that someday he will be able to function in the realm of “normalcy”. If I don’t have hope, I have nothing. One of my favorite quotes is by Thich Nhat Hanh, a Vietnamese Buddhist monk. He said “Hope is important because it can make the present moment less difficult to bear. If we believe that tomorrow will be better, we can bear a hardship today.” That about sums it up!

If you are going to be in the Youngstown, Ohio area this weekend stop by and show your support. If you are interested in more info you can find it at http://autismspeaks.org .

Brings a tear to my eye.

I had to borrow this from a friend. She’s a fellow autism mom and has become a valued friend. I admire her and her dedication to a sweet little boy who always tells me “bye bye” as he leaves school every day. You see, she didn’t have to step up and say “I’ll take care of his needs”. but she did. She is more than a mom, she’s grandma, she’s caretaker, she’s advocate. She’s a hero.

 

Walk With Me

Walk in my shoes
for one single day.
Then you’ll see why
I need to pray.
Come live in my home
for a week or two
and then remember
I am just like you.
I didn’t ask for the things I was given
I didn’t choose this road I have taken
Walk a mile with me hand in hand
Then perhaps you will understand.

I’m not really complaining
about the stress in my life,
I know that we all have
some toil and some strife.
But walk with me, when you think
I am wrong, walk with me
and you’ll start to belong.
Embrace my sorrows,
like they are your own,
And then you will know me
And see I have grown.

The journey I take
is different from yours
My life took one of those
unexpected detours,
But this road that I travel
is not really so long,
If the people who watch me
will join in my song.
Listen to my footsteps
and watch how I dance
And then you will know me
and give me a chance.

Take heart and remember
It can happen to you,
who knows where my pathway
will cross over to you?
So speak to me softly
if you can’t understand
Remember I once stood
right there where you stand.
And walk with me gently
when the day is at end.
And then I will know
I can call you my friend.

copyright 1999
Sally Meyer

Hello world!

I’m taking the plunge! I’m joining the ranks of people who put it all out there whether anyone wants to read it or not. ;o)

I have a lot to say, some of it is important and socially conscious, but most of it is the inane rambling of an over-worked, over-tired, overwrought mom on the edge. I hope you will give me a chance. Be honest, even if you have to be brutally so. Just keep in mind that my sanity is hanging by a thread. I cry at commercials, when the grocery store is out of our brand of toothpaste, and when my alarm clock goes off in the morning. There is no telling how I will respond to someone picking me apart for a small grammar mistake. I’ve been around, I know how brave someone named “Anonymous” can be while hiding behind their computer.

In starting this blog I hope to share with you the challenges and joys of raising a child with special needs and his typical brother. I follow several blogs written by parents of children with special needs and I’ve found the biggest thing they have in common is their focus on special needs. I think that’s great and as it should be. Maybe they only have their SN child in their life so that is where their focus lies. I have been blessed with two children, a 6 year old goofball on the autism spectrum and his “tyrant in the making” typical 2 year old brother. While autism is a HUGE part of our lives,it isn’t the only part. Yes, I talk about autism, sometimes I even bore people to death with it but as the tyrant grows, raising a typical child becomes a bigger part of life. I relish the experiences both of my boys provide.

At the end of the day I’m just a mom and I hope to share the smiles and tears that are a part of life.