I got to meet the wonderful Temple Grandin in Roanoke at one of the seminars. I gave her signed copies of my book, "Autism and the World According to Matt" and she signed a copy of "Different, Not Less" for me. Felt like I had met a rock-star. Her talk on autism was wonderful - she's a great orator. And funny too!
I was asked once, "How does one person change the world?" My reply was, "One story at a time".
The diagnosis of autism was a rare one back in 1988 when Matt was diagnosed - only 1:10,000 affected. Then the numbers grew.....and people began to notice. I went from trying to explain autism to those Matt met each year, to really promoting autism awareness through my stories and speaking engagements using this little website. Although most people know the word autism now, we still have a long way to go to make this world a better place for those on the spectrum. Thank you for helping me promote autism awareness.
Thank you world, for your willingness to listen and to open your heart and mind to the mysterious puzzle that is autism.
Matt just turned 29 - wow....
What did he want? He asked for 2 things for this years big event: an iphone and a dinner with his brothers and sister with no parents allowed. I got him the iphone and he did go to dinner with Christopher, Jacob and Sarah - and I sucked it up and didn't go.... and let me just say, that was really hard to do.
It's not that he didn't want me around exactly, it was more that he wanted to be young and with people his age and he didn't feel the need for a translator - and that is really huge. I usually reword people's statements so he understands what they are saying (he always looks to me after someone makes a comment) and evidently he felt he could do this... listen and interact in a conversation ... without his mom doing the translation thing. How could I not be amazed and proud of his desire to try it solo?
Yep, I was also sad - it's a mom thing. But learning to step back is my challenge in life, not his, and I am doing my best. Independence may have started with a place of his own, but he is growing in his independence every single day since.
My kids were sweet and sent me pictures of their big celebration - and I wanted to share them with you. Look at that smile on his face and that confidence that leaps off the page. For Matt.... Life is good. It's very good.
Available in bookstores December 16, 2014
Reviews: 5.0 out of 5 stars
The World According to Matt Shines Light on Autism
“They say you must walk a mile in another person’s shoes to really know them. Liz Becker is an Autism Mom who walks a marathon in her autistic son’s shoes and details it beautifully in her book Autism and The World According to Matt: A collection of 50 inspirational short stories on raising a moderate/severe mostly non-verbal autistic child from diagnosis to independence.
To Read more reviews
Autism Light, created by Alan Stokes, recognizes heroes in and for the autism community.
Honored as an Autism Light #13, on August 11, 2011". There are over 250 Autism Lights now and the number continues to grow. It's an honor to be a part of this autism awareness campaign. Thank you, Alan!
Latest stories on AUTISM SUPPORT NETWORK.
Matt and I took the challenge. I went first so he knew what to do. He didn't like the idea of eyes-closed to draw, so I leaned in as he was drawing and told him it was okay to open his eyes if he wanted to.... but he didn't. Watch and see what happens when pen hits paper!!