Yesterday was Autism awareness day. This time last year Diddle didn’t have her diagnosis yet, but I could see the signs. I spent many a night crying and wondering if I’d ever hear her say “mama” or “I love you”. She was just shy of 2 years old, and still hadn’t spoken a recognizable word. My awareness of Autism was limited to the signs and symptoms, and fears about how hard this “disability” was going to be on our family.
This year, Diddle calls me “my mom” (she got that from the movie “Home”), tells me “I love you” and much more! Most of what she says is descriptive, she isn’t yet using words to communicate how she feels or what she wants, but she has a large vocabulary. But now, my “Autism Awareness” is different. I’m more aware of the entire picture, and the beauty of Autism, and less aware of the challenges. Every day I see her Autism, and every day it makes me smile. It’s not a disability or disease, it’s a gorgeous and fun part of who she is. Like her vocal stim for instance. “Diddle-iddle-iddle-iddle-iddle…” it’s kinda like a stutter I guess, it’s freakin’ cute, and it’s where her nickname comes from. Her love of numbers, letters, patterns, order and routine (similar to OCD) is so fun to observe. Sure, her “symptoms” do make it harder for her in some areas of life, but we ALL have challenges in something or another.
Autism awareness – how aware are you? Are you aware of the beauty in Autism? There’s a lot, look for it and you’ll see. 🙂