Last Day of Autism Awareness Month

From last month. 

 

As April closes it takes with it Autism Awareness Month, I take a moment to pause and reflect on the last almost six years my eyes have been open to autism. I say eyes open because before 2004 I had only heard autism spoken once, by a friend describing her sister-in, and I only had her accounts to draw upon. Now, I appreciate all characteristics people bring to the table. As we got closer and closer to Tristan's developmental pediatric appointment, the more Peter and I learned about the autistic traits that soon woke-me-up from the haze of only being aware of people similar to me. A sad state of affairs, one that I choose never to return to. Similarities don't make for progress or invention, differences do, not just race, ethnicity, gender, or religion, but plain-old how people are wired lead to advance in all humankind. In grew-up in a family that celebrated when everyone used the same household cleaners or their bathroom's decor were the same. If you showed any sign of straying from the pack (which I often did) you would be told so. Also, probably living in the whitest state in the Union did not help much to broaden my perspective on differences. So, I have welcomed autism with open arms for allowing me to grow into a person that can see value in everyone. Perhaps not even just seeing, but understanding why we need all people to be contributing members of our communities. Thank you to Tristan and all the others in my communities that have educated and enlightened me.

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