INDEPENDENCE BEGAN IN NOVEMBER 2013!!!
That's right, Matt is off to a good start. As with all things autism, progress is slow and steady. He has all his things at his new place but only stays overnight 1 day a week. After the holidays we'll try for 2, then 3, then 4. It's not how fast he transitions - it's that he does at all. It takes a tremendous amount of courage - and knowing Matt, he's giving it his all right now. Keep in mind that for someone who is moderate / severe autistic, mostly non-verbal, and highly sensitive to environmental stimuli, being able to live independently is a very rare thing. So stayed tuned for progress reports as he deals with the biggest change of his life. Go Matt!
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 - 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. We officially reached 2 and a half Million people on Sunday, September 30, 2012.... Now we are over 3.8 million - Wow!
Even though 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.
At that time Autism Prevalence was rare - only 1:10,000
The current prevalence is currently 1:88, or 1:54 boys.
Matt is 26 years old and has been autistic since age 2 1/2. As a young child, Matt was considered to be moderate to severely autistic, demonstrating all the classical signs and behaviors. Doctors advised me to "put Matt in a home" because he would be too much of a burden on me and my family. Instead of institutionalizing Matt, we took him back to our home where he progressed in tiny steps every year.
Now this well educated, talented young man shows just how ill informed the medical community was about autism.
Matt has overcome almost every one of the classically autistic behaviors and is an inspiration to those in the early years of autism.
Read more about his life, his struggles along the way and my own education of autism in the stories on my blog. Parents, teachers, family, friends and those wanting insight into the mind of an autistic individual will all find something useful here.
Read about Matt's early symptoms and his wonderful transitions in the story "For Autism Awareness Day I am Sending You Hope" or read it at the global autism site, Autism Around the Globe.
I was invited to be interviewed on the 221rst AUTISM LIVE broadcast from Tarzana, California via Skype. I was nervous and excited to be a part of such an important endeavor as AUTISM-LIVE. Nothing can get me talking more than discussing my youngest son, Matt. Now I invite you to watch via the Youtube link. Thanks to Shannon Penrod and her team for having me on.
Yes, almost, but not quite done..... (much harder than one would think to write a book). This new page allows you to read some of the work already done on my book, Autism and the Basics of Non-verbal Communication. I will only be keeping a particular excerpt up for a month or so before replacing it with another one from some other chapter. It won't be back - at least not until it's all done and on the book shelves, so enjoy while you can!!
Alan Stokes, the creator of the Blogger site Autism Light, chose me for his "Autism Light for August 11, 2011". Autism Light #13 (he now has 248). What a great honor. Thank you, Alan!
Check out our page and the many, many others on the Autism Lights.
I was so honored to be asked to be on "Everyday Autism Miracles" with host Shannon Penrod - the same host that did the interview on "Autism-Live". It aired last Monday and even if I had a few moments where I couldn't find the words (happens to us all? maybe?) I enjoyed our talk. Here's the link. The host and the interviewee may have been the same, but the conversation was on many other things and different stories. Thanks for listening and for helping me promote autism awareness. Your support means everything to me.
|EVERYDAY AUTISM MIRACLES|
This is my Alma mater - and so proud to have been asked to be interviewed for the RU Today online magazine, and featured in today’s edition of From the Dean’s Desk - the news and events section for the College of Science and Technology.
I know you think about it. I know you wonder. Everyone needs to research this area before deciding what side of the debate you lean toward. To help in your research I have found an excellent presentation on the data. I invite you to listen. Please listen to this presentation.
Also, did you know that being vaccinated during pregnancy can cause an immune response that could cause autism in the fetus? Check out "Can Autism be prevented".
And... did you know that an Italian court has found the MMR vaccine responsible for autism??? Read it, Here.