Wow, what a month! I’m really glad I did this series this month. Like I said in the beginning, I’ve never taken the time to become aware during an awareness month. If you’ve just clicked the autism label and it’s now some time in the future, you’ll find thirty posts about autism. I had planned on writing a post a day, but fell behind a few times, so I just made sure the number of posts equaled the number of days in April.
I hope you feel like you have a better understanding of what autism is, and what it’s like to live with it. I mean I know none of us can possibly understand what it’s like to live with it, but I hope this month has shed some light on how people with autism live their lives.
Firstly, they are people. They are people with autism. They are adults, they are children, they are boys and they are girls, men and women. Just because someone might be quirky, or weird, or may not look you in the eye, doesn’t mean they’re rude or psychotic. Above all, what I’ve learned from this month is that people with autism are intelligent, creative, hard working and dedicated people who just want to be accepted. They don’t necessarily want to be “fixed”. What I’ve learned this month is that if we’d all just take the time to really learn about one another, maybe the world would be just a little bit of a better place.
So next time a child is being unruly and you get annoyed and role your eyes at the parents, just think that maybe it’s not a parenting issue. Maybe their child has a sensory issue and that grocery store was just a little too bright and loud. Or if you try and strike up conversation with someone and they don’t look right at you, maybe it doesn’t mean that they’re rude, untrustworthy or creepy. Sure, anyone could be any of those negative things, but I’m beginning to think that maybe more times than not, that person might be struggling with something inside. I for one, feel like I’ve become a little more compassionate after this month. Really being able to look at people who anger me and think, what’s going on with them today that I don’t know about?
I plan on becoming more aware from now on. Tomorrow starts the series on mental health and I know I said I wouldn’t do an awareness month for June, but if there’s something in June, I might just change my mind.
Thank you to all who have contributed by sending me stuff in the email or in comments, and a special thanks to Katrin for her guest post and and input in the comments. I hope you’ve learned as much as I have! Now, go out there and google something you’ve always wondered about, become aware and maybe even share what you’ve learned with another. 🙂