While every child is different, I can only go by my own experience of when my parents told me I had autism and why I feel it was the perfect timing.
They chose to tell me at age thirteen when I started asking a lot more questions.
Why age thirteen? Why not an earlier age like five or six? Here are my thoughts ~
I truly believe there is power in innocence. Children do not need to know about autism in grade school. Let children be children. Run around and play, make friends, and let kids be kids. Autism is not a priority for them. Even if they start to question things that revolve around some of their differences with other children, I still believe it’s better to wait until the early teenage years, but always letting them know they are special and perfect just the way they are.
So why do I feel that waiting until the age of thirteen is a good time? Because it’s the beginning of the teenage years when things get incredibly emotional. Holding these...
I am a humongous supporter of the idea of early childhood education in terms of repetition in the daily routine of the week now that I am older, but that wasn't always the case. Get up, eat breakfast, take a shower, put on clothes, take the bus to go to school and all that jazz. The same goes for teenagers too and I see no difference in the routine, but there are times that I rebelled against that routine. Maybe you have been rebellious too.
How do we SNAP INTO IT? That is easier said than done, I must admit, but one trick I learned was to not think about it too much, just DO IT! One thing that helped was that my parents used lists with pictures to illustrate the routine. Another thing to learn is the cause and effect.... if you don't brush your teeth, you get cavities and your breath smells badly; if you don't wash your body with soap when bathing and use deodorant, your body smells badly. That was a motivator for me because I don't like bad smells, they...
Don’t follow my example.
That’s my advice when it comes to this example. All kidding aside, I have explained why so many times in my two books that it became extremely exhausting. However, I’ll try my best to see what I would have done differently.
Never have been a huge fan of the bullying stuff; and I do not speak for everyone but I can very well imagine a large majority of people do not want to be bullied. Same with people who would want to talk about it; I know I am one of those people. But I’ll still share.
It is not an easy topic to talk about really. Always feel like I have to be extra careful on what to say in providing advice. I will do my best. The first thing I would do when being bullied is to not say anything and avoid eye contact; Avoiding eye contact gives bullies some extra unneeded attention and it is best to avoid them the best you can.
It's not fun being around them, and after such a terrible experience, it is always important to tell...
Let’s get this over and done with.
I’ve talked a lot about what causes a meltdown, but for this blog post, I’ll talk about what it felt like to have one. I don’t have them today, though I do get mad easily at times; not gonna lie. Mostly over the stupidest of things and for the fun of it to use that energy to get stuff done by letting off all that steam.
The vast majority of children with autism do not want to have a meltdown, same with everyone else that does not have autism. No one wants these things to happen. Here is why.
When a person doesn’t keep it together as hard as they try, eventually, the brain starts to explode! I like to think of a meltdown as a ticking time bomb. I know the old saying that relates to having a short fuse in the topic of temper; I know I get that way when I’m starving. Meltdowns are a lot like having a fuse and the length varies on everyone. Keeping a meltdown from happening is like putting out the fuse however way...
Top. Sounds very cruel when saying it out loud really. Too lazy to change the title now, so here are the to- err… Five Autism Meltdown Triggers. I will share the five and tell you why I believe they make sense through experience. As much as I do not want to think back to those kinds of moments, I think it may be helpful to understand why they happen. I hope you understand. Here we go!
This is a very common trigger for an autism meltdown. Okay, for the rest of this blog post, I don’t want to use the word “trigger” or anything like that. Sounds silly and weird to me. Rather be “Tiggered”. I like the Winnie the Pooh books. Anyway, back to the topic! A common… buildup…! Yeah, I like that better. Buildup. A common buildup for an autism meltdown is being completely overwhelmed. Here are a few examples.
Keep in mind that I never speak for everyone. Everyone is different and would say things differently. What would you say to someone about autism? Feel free to share. Here are five things that someone with autism would want you to know about autism.
A lot of people with autism, myself included, welcome any kind of help. Sometimes they say they don’t need help but in reality, they truly do. Why refuse help? Most likely because of the fear of being embarrassed and asking for assistance can be a sign of weakness; Not true by the way. Everyone asks for help every so often; Even the smartest people on Earth ask for help. It’s okay to ask the person with autism if he or she needs any help. It is the job of that person with autism to say yes and receive the offer for help. Once there is that connection, breakthroughs are bound to happen. People can help others who have autism and it can be the other way around. Those...
This was my most challenging speaking engagement yet! No one has asked me to speak at a school graduation ceremony until recently; Other speaking engagements I have done were about giving information relating to autism, but this was a GRADUATION speech I had to give, and that was scary! Before I took my seat on the front row, I said: “I want my mom.” My dad was with me, but it was just one of those feelings, ya know.
I think the main reason why I was so terrified, in this particular event, was because it reminded me of the time I graduated high school in 2013, not too long ago. That does not feel very long ago to me, maybe because I know how important graduation is. So we practiced hard on getting the outline right before going up on stage to make the best impression on all of those graduates since it can only be done once.
Before graduation, Dad and I had the privilege to check out the school . Gateway Academy. Out of all of the schools I have been in, this one...
The Muckleshoot Tribe.
It was November in 2016, way before I perfected my signature when signing books; We were invited to a community gathering from the tribe. Me, and my parents were with me and I was fully ready for this engagement. In its own way, this felt very personal.
For a very long time, I have always been fascinated with the native tribes of the nation. In elementary school, I would go to the library and learn more about the different cultures in the many tribes all around the country. Navajo, Apache, Cherokee, Cheyenne, Comanche, Cree, Seminole, Nootka, Klamath; all of them outstanding! I remember when I was very little, I was so extremely bummed out realizing I did not have any native blood; It is all European descent for me. There are ninety six tribes here in Washington state, and one of the tribes is Muckleshoot. Only tribes I was familiar with in the state were Spokane, Snoqualmie, and Muckleshoot; And I was fortunate and grateful to be reached out by Muckleshoot....
I was starving! All I really had for breakfast was a couple of waffles and two oranges. It was a work day but I already signed all of the books and had them shipped. Spare time was in full effect but wanted to make a business trip to Fry’s, one of my favorite stores for electronics. Before that, I took the boat to Seattle and made my journey out to the city culture once again; Currently live in an island, fun to get a city fix anyway.
Fried chicken would be one of my first choices for lunch or possibly dinner; Uncle Jack introduced the tasty goodness to me when I was six and I was hooked! Good with ranch! Wasn’t just the fried chicken for me, it was fried chicken, ranch, a biscuit, a cookie, soda, root beer, fries, and a burger; three pieces of chicken I almost forgot to add there.
I was starving! Went through the drive-thru, parked at a Taco Bell, and ate my meal sitting up against my car. Of course, that is the thing about having an empty stomach, empty brain. Forgot...
I have wanted to go to the moon. It is dark and quiet up there; Good place to read and play baseball. When I was little, I would think that every home run will turn the baseballs into comments and people on Earth will know I’ve been playing baseball up on the moon.
Years went by, the dream is still welcoming, but every dream can turn into a nightmare when reality hits hard. It is not the risk of going up there; I love the danger, it is the thought of the press. Here is what I mean.
Lately, I have been noticing a strange trend relating to autism. I will give some exaggerated examples.
It is this kind of thing I have been thinking about lately.
Do not get me wrong, I think it is WONDERFUL to have these kinds of things. Lot of opportunities and the most important aspect of the press is...