Friday, June 3, 2011

Raising awareness...not celebrating.

So if you read my last blog  you are now aware that April is Autism Awareness Month. You are also aware that I intend to use platforms such as my blog, my Facebook page and my big fat mouth to shout it from the rooftops. I want to make people aware of the epidemic that is Autism. I don't celebrate it. I don't know many who do.

I celebrate my son's accomplishments. I celebrate his milestones. I celebrate his amazing little self- but I DO NOT celebrate the fact that he is 1 in 110 children ( 1 in 70 boys) that are diagnosed with this disorder.
I am not an advocate for a "cure" necessarily. I know many who say "curing" their Autism would be taking something away from them- making them less than what they were. These are adults I have spoken to that have lived with the disorder and are functioning in the world now.

But when I talk to the mom who is still changing her 10 year old son's diapers or the dad is holding on to the hope that his daughter will one day make eye contact and say she loves him- I have to say would a "cure" be so bad?  Hell- I want a CAUSE or CAUSES  pinpointed for the huge upswing in Autism- then perhaps a cause will lead to a cure and so on and so forth.

But in the meantime- I will be an awareness junkie. I will read, research, talk, write, walk and jump for Autism Awareness, I will shove facts, figures and stories in your face - just in the hopes that you will pass on that knowledge to someone else.  This is how awareness is spread- from me to you, from you to your spouse or friend and from them to someone else. I don't expect you to become and expert- I am not an expert - but I know a hell of a lot- and you could learn a thing or two from me. 

This is not a month to celebrate. This is a month to learn, and to teach.  Parents of autistic children, and adults on the spectrum are a wealth of knowledge that only want the rest of the world to understand.