My Son’s Participation in Autism Awareness Night

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As most of you already know Every April we celebrate Autism Awareness all month long. Adam was really proud to participate in his first presentation this year on Autism Awareness. The high school has been running a workshop for the past two years where the middle school and high school students present to visitors what Autism is. They go beyond that though and talk about their own experiences living with Autism. My son was so proud to be a part of it. I’m going to highlight a few things from that very inspiring night.

 

So let me give you a rundown of events

Junior High!

Our first stop was the Junior high school table. Two young boys, both in the 7th grade, each talked about their experiences having Autism. These two brave young boys talked about the teachers who have helped them while praising their parents for being there for them through all of their tough times. We also got to see how each boy talked about the differences they had within the spectrum. One boy loves anime while the other boy was all about Science! They helped to spread Autism Awareness through their presentation.

 

Next Up

ADAM!!

While the high school kids had a group presentation, which I will get to in a minute, Adam put on his own. He worked really hard with the help of his paraprofessional and Special Education Liaison. They told me though that it was all Adam. He came up with the theme of his power point using old cartoons and the Simpsons, and wrote his own speech. You can view the video below.

 

 

The rest of the high school group

High School!

There were four other high school students and they all spoke about their specific issues within the Autism Spectrum. Two of the kids have ADHD as well as Autism. They are all high functioning but they all have slightly different social drawbacks too. One girl was very talkative and communicative while two others were quiet and spoke softly and slowly. They said this was because if they talk faster, their words get jumbled. I know I, myself, have done that quite a few times. These kids also spoke highly of their teachers at the high school but also spoke highly of their parents. One boy said if his parents weren’t so understanding and patient about his meltdowns when he was younger, he wouldn’t be where he is today. His meltdowns centered mostly around social situations.

 

Now to the last group

The College Kids!

I will be honest here. While I loved Adam’s presentation and am so very proud of him, I really enjoyed listening to the college kids. The main reason for that is because Adam wants to go to college. He wants to study video production and script writing! So, naturally my curiosity about what college life is like for young men and women on the spectrum filled me with excitement.

There were four young people at the college presentation station. Two of them go to one of the local Community Colleges while the other two attend a small college in Vermont that was designed for men and women with various disabilities. I don’t know much about the college but the two young men praised it for the small campus and the welcome home feel they receive from the professors, students and staff.

A lot of questions were answered but one thing the young woman said really stood out to me. She said, “Let them find their way.” Now that is a scary notion for any parent regardless of their abilities. The young woman made a good point though. She added that we should help our kids do research to know which office to turn to for help. She also pointed out that most college students don’t know there is help on campus. Having had that experience myself, I understand what she means.

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And the night went on

After the Autism Awareness presentation the Special Education Department treated all of us to dinner at a local restaurant. They are hoping to add in the elementary school kids next year. It was such a great night for everyone. All of the children gave high praise to their teachers and parents during their presentations. The night was pretty magical and awe-inspiring. The best part is afterwards I got a huge sense of relief that my boy will be okay. He has a bright future ahead of him and I couldn’t be a prouder parent!

#autismawareness

Thanks so much for Reading!

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29 thoughts on “My Son’s Participation in Autism Awareness Night

  1. Oh Michelle this made me cry! Adam did amazingly well and this positivity was just what I needed to hear right now. It is really hard to let them find their way but I agree that she made an excellent point! Thank you for sharing this inspiring post. Thank you for linking up to #ablogginggoodtime ๐ŸŽ‰
    Imperfect Mum recently posted…#ablogginggoodtime #57My Profile

    1. I’m so glad it inspired you! Adam amazes me and just getting to meet other young adults and kids on the spectrum and hearing their views was just awe inspiring!

    1. Yes we do! That’s why I write these uplifting posts about him because it helps others see the positive side of Autism. Thanks so much for reading!๐Ÿ˜Š

  2. My nephew has autisim and it always infuritates me when people/teachers think he can not part take in certain acitivies, but in actual fact they love it and thrive from it.

    1. They do. It wears them out a little bit in the social aspect but they do love it and they want to be accepted for who they are. I am fortunate that my son goes to a school that encourages that. Thanks so much for stopping by!๐Ÿ˜Š

  3. I totally get this. My brother has special needs and we were told he could not do certain things but he has and it’s amazing to see his development. He is now 24. Thanks for sharing this post. Autism is an important issue to me!

    1. I’m so glad you found this post inspiring! Its always really nice to find others who know someone on the spectrum who have done what doctors said they couldn’t. I remember my son’s first doctor and first pre-school teacher both telling me he wasn’t going to go very far because of his Autism. Boy has he proven them wrong! Thanks so much for reading!

  4. This sounds amazing and I’m guessing, if you were all treated out to dinner, that it’s a small school. I headed a small school for people with behavioural difficulties and SEN and was proud to get two students, one with autism, into The Brit School and many of them into college. Although this wasn’t the only route and there are many apprenticeships out there, that are worth doing the research on, with the students of course. I hope he keeps flourishing. #BloggersClubUK

    1. We live in a small town and he goes to the public high school but the teachers and the principal set funds aside for events like this. Sometimes they put their own money into it which is in itself, remarkable. Next year my son will be able to volunteer at the local food bank learning some job skills and improving on his social skills. This summer he is going to be starting some of that but next year he will dive in more and he’s really excited about it! Thanks so much for stopping by!

  5. what a great story! It just goes to show, When you believe in yourself and others believe and support you, you can achieve anything. You must be very proud! I love hearing stories like this. My friends son has just been diagnosed with Autism, we are all learning more about it. I shall share this article with her. Inspirational.

    1. Yes! Please do share it with others. I know I would have liked to have this inspiration back when my son was diagnosed. Thanks so much for reading and I wish your friend the best of luck to her and her child๐Ÿ˜Š

    1. It was a great evening and watching my son do his own presentation on it educating all of us on Autism was amazing!

    1. Thank you Jeremy! That means a lot and I am so like, over the moon proud of him and just amazed and in awe with how far he has come. From a boy who barely spoke a word and stimmed a lot as a child in social settings to a well spoken and articulate young man, he amazes me every day! Thanks so much for reading!๐Ÿ˜Š

  6. What an amazing evening and well done to everyone who took part. Although there is more if an awareness of autism in the uk than there was, this type of initiative would make such a difference. My nephew was talking the other day about going to university but was concerned because he knows his autism makes him different. It would be great if he could have someone to talk to who has experienced uni as an autustic student.

    1. The best thing I can recommend to your nephew is to maybe look online for groups or find chat rooms if he feels that is something he can do and try finding someone who can talk to him about it. Adam wants to go to college but he was afraid that if he went to college he would have to leave home but then I told him about the different options like online classes which are offered by most universities Here in the states. I hope your nephew can attend university. If it’s something he really wants to do I believe he can do it. Thanks so much for reading Tracey! Your input is always welcome!๐Ÿ˜Š

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