April, is World Autism Awareness, month. Up until a year ago, I wouldn’t have given it much thought. My understanding of Autism, was limited and superficial. Kids with quirky traits, debate over vaccinations as a cause, references of the character Sheldon, from the Big Bang Theory, were my impressions of the disorder. In my mind not really a big deal. Seemed like a manageable lifestyle for a parent and family. How WRONG I was!
My perspective changed once I began working at Abram Nation / The Safety Sleeper. First off, I even wondered why a bed like this was necessary. Couldn’t these parents get their kids in a routine? Working with the families who had children on the Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), challenged my thinking immediately. Clearly, I had no clue about ASD, but I was about to get an education. Autism is not a mild learning disability or personality trait in which children “outgrow”. It is a complex developmental disability. Cognitively, these kiddos didn’t know how to stay in bed, needed very little sleep, and without supervision would be in danger of harming themselves. The first mom I spoke with was exhausted, weepy and was running out of ways to contain her little Houdini. I’ve now come to know the secret life of Autism through the many families I’ve spoken and the vast support required for both the child and the family.
How can we help? Let’s embrace a new perspective. How much do you know about people with autism? Find out by taking this quiz from autismspeaks.org.
Want to get more involved? Start a Facebook fundraiser for World Autism Month in three easy steps!
- Set your fundraising goal
- Tell your story
- Share your fundraiser
Check out the Autism Society’s National Autism Awareness page for more specific ways to participate, advocate and donate to support the Autism community. We want to get one step closer to a society where those with ASD, are truly valued for their unique talents and gifts.