Day nine

Day nine asks for some “words of wisdom” that speak to me.

“I’m still learning “ -Michelangelo at age 87

We’re never done learning. It’s something that we do throughout our lives. Learning and trying something new, accomplishing goals. These are a few things that regardless of age we are capable of doing.

“Study the art of science. Study the science of art. Develop your senses. Learn how to see. Realize that everything connects with everything else. “ Leonardo Davinci

I feel this deeply. When you develop a passion into something like art or writing it overflows into other areas of your life. You find various ways to live your passion. Knowledge provides you with better insight . You share that insight and the passion with others.

“What is done cannot be undone but, one can prevent it from happening again” -Anne Frank

These words of a young Anne frank are a bold reminder that what we have the power to change tomorrow. We’re living in a time following the Jewish faith still results in anti semitism ( hate and violent acts that are committed) It’s been decades since the holocaust. Acceptance and religious freedom are still battles being. This is just one example of the past repeating itself. Racism and Disability rights are also wars that we still wage. The past teaches us. We need to use the present to learn from the past and to create positive change. The future has a lot of possibility. Let’s remember the past and change tomorrow.

Everybody is a genius . But if you judge a fish by it’s ability to climb a tree, it will live it’s whole life believing that it is stupid.” -Albert Einstein

I know a lot of disabled people. Hard Working, Talented, Athletic are just some of the ways these people shine. Everybody regardless of disability has strengths and weaknesses. If you judge someone based on what you think their IQ is or their disability you’re not seeing the success’s they do have or the knowledge that they possess. How a person communicates is not a measure of their knowledge or ability. 🧏🏽‍♂️🤳🏾🤟🏽

“If you want to live a happy life tie it t goal not people or objects”. Albert Einstein

I’ve always had goals I have wanted to achieve. When I was younger I really wanted to be a nurse. My math skills made that not possible. It’s taken me longer than most to find work that I could do continuously and that I enjoyed. This has given me the opportunity to recognize strengths that I have and to work on my weaknesses. While the path that I’m on isn’t one that I pictured myself on, It’s a path that introduced me to things about myself that I would not have otherwise discovered and I’ve set goals (running races) that challenge me, have helped me to grow into the person I am today, have given me a sense of accomplishment and made me want to work harder!

“Two roads diverged in a wood and I -I took the one less traveled.” Robert Frost

This is from a poem but , I feel that It is important. We don’t always end up what doing we imagined in life. The different path that we’re on allows us to see or do things that we would not have done otherwise. It allows us to meet people we might otherwise not have met. It’s path that might be scary or hard to go down if it’s not something that we imagined. It’s a path that we can really enjoy.

“Our live begin to end the day that we become silent about things that matter” Martin Luther King J.r.

Humans have rights. We don’t always see eye to eye on these rights. Disability,Race, Gender , Socioeconomic status and sexual orientation are just a few of the reasons that people have to fight for their human rights! For people fighting for human rights the struggle may be different but, that doesn’t make it any less valid. It’s important to stand up for what is right. It’s important to choose actions that are good. Using your voice is a very powerful thing. Your story can have an impact. If you don’t speak up about important rights nothing will change. Change happens when you make that impact.

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Life full circle

Autism is a Developmental Disability There are skills at certain ages that you are supposed to be able to do.

I had trouble with things like skipping , doing buttons and snaps,tying my shoes .

To help my fine (small movements ) and gross (big movements) motor skills improve I did physical therapy (big movements) and occupational therapy (small movements).

I learned how to grip a pencil the correct way, I learned how to use scissors . I did things like pulling beads out of therapy putty and working on my balance by hopping on one foot.

Therapy scissors

Everything was made into a game so it was fun. The things that were hard ( tying my shoes, skipping, jumping rope, balancing) were things that I practiced a lot!

I definitely got frustrated! There were some of the things the friends could do that I could. I couldn’t button blue jeans or tie my shoes for quite some time . I didn’t have the upper body strength to do the monkey bars . (The monkey bars and doing pull up are current goals that I’m working towards.)

With practice I was able to accomplish a lot!

Life sometimes has moments that bring you full circle.

Recently I started doing occupational therapy again. My dominant hand that I use for, opening a carton of milk, squeezing out toothpaste, typing , drawing and much more was very sore.

It was difficult. I missed drawing and I like being able to do things independently.

I have been learning new exercises that help my hand.

I have advocated for myself. I’ve had to describe what the pain is like. (Achy, & sharp and burning) I’ve had to describe what activities are hard.

Some of the exercises that I have been practicing are exercises that I use therapy putty for. No beads this time. 😃

I have been able to draw thanks to practicing the exercises and a new pencil grip.

It is frustrating when something like skipping or tying your shoes does not come easily.

With practice you can tie your shoes or skip.

You are capable!

With practice comes progression.

STOP the “MUSIC”

There is a new video out with inaccurate and dramatized portrayal of autism spectrum.

Music

This has a lot of autistic people very irate and fearful.

1. An actress plays the part of the “young autistic woman

There are autistic people who self advocate and who have a passion for acting that would of been a great fit for this role!

You Can’t simulate an autistic person’s experience for a movie or a tv show with someone who is NOT autistic !

A Disabled Character in a movie or a TV show should be played by an actor / actress that has that Disability!!

2. Stigma Continues

Autistic people still heavily feel the stigma that developed from the FALSE report that autism was caused by vaccines.

An autism diagnosis became something that was feared.

Autism isn’t always easy!

Meltdowns ,

Stimming / Regulating ,

Sensitivities ,

And Anxiety , Depression or Trauma are just some of the things Autistic People experience.

An inaccurate portrayal of the experiences that Autistic people have is harmful!

3. Not every Autistic person has the same experience

My life. What I have gone through. The skills that I have learned and use. My strengths and weaknesses . The relationships I have. There many different things that contribute to my authentic autistic self.

4. Helping Autistic people, Breaking stigma.

For situations like meltdowns that Autistic People have there are right and there are wrong ways to help an autistic person who is already in a fragile state. Saying or doing the wrong thing can escalate an already tense situation.

Meltdowns and stimming are moments that are sometimes very public. They cause to pause and stare. Peers may bully because what they see and don’t understand is something that looks funny or entertaining.

The dramatized and inaccurate portrayal of these moments that an Autistic person has creates stigma and providing the wrong type of help for a meltdown is like pulling an object from a person that has been impaled. It HURTS them!

These are just a few reasons why OUR experiences and OUR voices matter!

Nothing About us Without us!!

Using my platform

462,000 people have died

That number grows with each passing day

There is hope!

23 years ago a study came out that was falsified. ( falsified means the information the study was edited to make seem true) This study was on Autism and vaccinations.

This falsified, untrue study caused parents to panic and stop vaccinating their children.

herd immunity (people that can get vaccinated being vaccinated for those who can not be ) declined.

Growing up with cyclical vomiting syndrome, abdominal migraines, migraines, and precocious puberty I had my fair share of Doctors Appointments and Hospital visits.

I had trust in the Doctor’s and nurses who provided care for me. I had trust in the medication and treatments that heloped me to feel better. I had trust in science.

From the time I was a baby to the present day I have received vaccinations.

As a baby before I was even vaccinated there were signs of autism that were evident.

When I graduated from high school I didn’t go of to college like many of my peers. I missed the vaccinations that college students get.

I was smart & creative but, I lacked the confidence, determination, & independence that I have now.

It was hard for me to advocate for self at my Dr’s appointments.

2010 is a year that I will never forget!

That was the year that Pertussis aka Whooping cough. I tore a chest muscle from coughing and needed an inhaler.

Had I gotten whooping cough as a baby there’s a chance I might not have survived. I was lucky! I was vaccinated.

I’ve felt the effects of preventable disease.

My experience with Whooping cough and knowing that autism is Not caused by vaccinations fired something up inside of me

I knew my experience with whooping cough though very unpleasant could have been a lot worse. I didn’t want anyone else to have to go through that.

I knew that vaccines DO NOT cause autism!

I wanted to change the stigma that surrounded autism.

There is hope that is on the horizon.

I feel that it is important for me to use my platform.

When it is my turn I am getting vaccinated.

I trust in the science. I trust the Dr’s and Nurses.

I know that there are babies who are too young , people who have comprised immune systems, or people that are older who rely on people like me who can get vaccinated

My story has the ability to impact people. Maybe even change someone’s mind.

I feel that it’s important for me to use my platform to change a negative perception into a positive one.

Day Eight

Something that I struggle with is dating and friendships.

I’m shy sometimes when I first interact with people. When I’m comfortable with people is when I relax.

It’s hard for me to read body language and facial expressions. It’s hard for me to understand tone from text or message. I worry that people see me as a child and incapable.

I want acceptance and I want love\romance

I want to impress , I want it to work out.

I Love who I am.

I Love who I was then.

I Love who I am now. ❤️

I don’t drive and I still live with my parents.

Those are two minuscule things in the grand scheme of things.

I have independence in a lot of other ways.

I have a good sense of humor.

I have goals.

I’m nurturing and loving.

I’m good cooking.

I excel at writing, sketching, painting .

Dating in the modern world (i.e. using apps to swipe left and swipe right in the hopes of finding a date) is something that frustrates me.

My life is pleasant without the added stress to the struggle.

Day Four

Day number four asks me to write about someone who inspires me

This is a very hard question!

I finally have someone in mind to write about.

Singer and Dancer JoJo Siwa came out publicly to fans, friends and family about her preferences in who she loves. Girl meets boy and the romance that blossoms is not the love that she wants.

This inspires me! It takes courage and self confidence to do something differently. Especially when it’s something that people might not understand or that they dislike because they have different beliefs

It’s scary for many Autistic people to be open about being Autistic. There are myths surrounding Autism that people still prefer to believe. Even after these myths have been discredited. Society puts us in a box based on the capabilities they believe we have and the misinformation they have.

Anne Frank

Anne Frank went into hiding for well over a year in a very small place with her Family and some close friends her parents knew because there were people who believed that her religion (Judaism ) and the fact that she did not have the blonde hair and blue eyes that was preferred.

During her time in hiding Anne wrote in her diary. “The Diary Of Anne Frank “ has sold many copies. Anne Frank’s words in the face of adversity are inspiring! Anne’s book is a lasting legacy.

Courage ,Daring to be Different and Acceptance are things that stand out in Anne’s story.

Decades separate these women. They’re just two of many women who inspire!

The Message that is still just as ever as important is that difference’s are more than acceptable. Daring to be different is incredible!

Don’t let society put you into a box based on what they think you are capable of.

It’s scary to speak out about what you believe.

Speaking out and Daring to be different helps for others to understand and accept.

Understanding and accepting differences allow us to unbox and be uniquely authentic.

Day 7

1. Pretty Girl -Maggie Lindemann

Pretty Girl 🎀🚺🎹

2. Might Not Like ME -Brynn Elliott

Might not like me 🤷🏼‍♀️

3. Don’t give up on meAndy Grammer

Don’t Give up on Me

4. It’s gonna be me -*NSYNC (I visualize crossing the finish line at the Chicago marathon when I listen to this)

It’s gonna be me 🐝🙋🏽‍♀️

5. This is Me -Kesha

This is me 🙋🏽‍♀️✨❤️💛💚💙

6. Right where I’m supposed to be – Ryan Tedder , Avril Lavigne , Louis Fonzi

Right where I’m supposed to be 🏊🏼‍♀️🚴🏼‍♀️🏃🏽‍♀️

7. Footloose Kenny Loggins

Footloose 🕺💃🏼👠👟👞👢

8. Africa -Weezer

Africa 🌍🐘

9. Mad at Disney -Salem Ilese

Mad at Disney 😡🎪🎢

10. Dream Police -Cheap trick. (The music really helps with my running)

Dream Police 😴💭👮🏽👮🏻‍♂️

FEELing

Autistic people have nerves that are overactive.

Autism & the nervous system

What does this mean? Taste, Smell, Hearing, Seeing and Touching or Feeling are senses that are heightened.

This makes autistic people feel pain differently.

8 years ago I had a muscle injury. It was hard to pinpoint what was wrong. I had several tests done and was referred to physical therapy. Over the course of a year. It impacted my activity level and the way I felt physically,

The physical therapy helped but, from time to time if I push it too hard in my physical activity I get muscle strain.

Stinging and burning is the pain I feel when I overdo things. I get goosebumps when I get this sensation. It causes me to stop whatever I’m doing.

Two years ago I noticed that the joint of one my finger was sore. I taped it with the next to it , used ice and some heat and took medicine for it but, it didn’t feel any better.

It’s on my dominant hand so it’s affected when I brush my teeth, cook, use scissors and more.

Two doctor visits , a steroid and were tried. At some point the pain went away but the inflammation (swelling ) of my finger joint did not.

It’s not something that by looking at it you can tell that there’s a problem or that there is pain.

Enter 2020! The pain is back but now there is tingling. I had an EMG test done to test for Carpal tunnel Syndrome. The EMG didn’t show anything wrong.

As we finally got cold weather and snow that we had hoped for my joints began to ache. Heat felt really good.

Aching pain in the original joint and aching pain , stiffness and sharp, burning pain in my other joints.

The pain is real. “Seeing is believing “ My mind , the logic has a hard time believing it’s real.

It’s not easy when the answer and a solution aren’t easily found.

There are a lot of ways that you can feel pain or discomfort!

Your Feeling is valid.

Day Six

Five ways to win my heart?

1. Connection I think establishing a connection at mental or emotional level is just important as having a physical connection. A persons mind is beautiful thing to learn about and it’s something that you can grow to love. Having a deep mental connection is stimulating.

2. Set Goals I like to set goals for myself. Having goals provides direction and you have great sense of pride from accomplishing your goals. You’re working passionately towards something that you want to achieve . Having goals that are the same can be great because it gives you time to bond over the work you put in together and to support each other in reaching those goals. Having goals that are different allows you to support one another in working towards the goals that you want to reach.

3. 👶🏼👧🏽👦🏻🐶🐱 the way you interact with kids and animals is important. Those are both things I want in my future. The way you treat them: patience , nurturing are definitely things that I find important.

4. Humor I think having humor is something that is important. Laughter really can be the best medicine. Laughter makes getting to know one another a little less awkward. Laughter makes life fun.

5. Disability Someone who wants an interabled relationship. They can see the capability and independence that I have and they treat me with respect.

Day Five

Five places I would like to visit

Washington DC (again) I’ve been to Washington DC three times but there are so many memorials and museums there that I haven’t gotten a chance to see everything. I’ve read a few books by holocaust survivors and victims I would really like to see the Holocaust museum.

New York City (again) I’ve visited New York City but, it was a quick trip. I would really like to see more. Maybe see another broadway show, See the today show and the 9/11 memorial

Gettysburg I like the civil war history. I would love to visit Gettysburg to see first hand the remaining history. It’s deeper than anything that a book can provide.

Los Angeles ,California I would love to visit Los Angeles California. It would be cool to see the studios that have for filming shows. I would visit rodeo drive or one of the other great shopping spots they have. Hopefully I’d see a celebrity or two.

Columbus Zoo, The show secrets of the zoo is fascinating. As a kid my beanie babies served as zoo animals as I played a zoo keeper. It would be fun to see the different animals at the Columbus Zoo I so often watch on Tv. To learn new facts and to see the animals and staff from TV.