Autism / Asperger’s

A View in the Mirror : Why I Don’t Light it Up Blue, But it’s Cool if You Do

First of all, let me say, I have two ends of the spectrum living in my home.  For personal and privacy reasons I do not share my older son's issues, challenges and struggles as an aspie. He is grown today, has friends and a career, so marking him, just isn't cool.  I'll be happy to answer any question about him in a private email.  When [...]

When You Need Rainbows and Unicorns

It has been a hard couple of months. My daughter got disappointing results on the Sensory Integration and Praxis Test, despite having been in occupational therapy for four years. According to her most recent scope, she probably has some other food allergies lurking, causing reactions in her GI tract. We're having to go through medical review again so she can continue her immunoglobulin replacement therapy for [...]

There's No Place Like Camp, Especially #Autism "Camp C.A.N.O.E."

Almost four years ago, our family found out there was an Open House for a new Autism camp coming to the Oklahoma City area. We excitedly packed our children into our vehicle and drove the thirty minutes away to check it out. The new Autism camp was going to be hosted by and held at CampFire Heart of Oklahoma located close to my hometown. When [...]

The Truth About April and Autism Awareness – My Experience

Autism Awareness Month….The month to share experiences and resources for those living with or hoping to learn more about autism, or the month for those in the autism community to fight over organizations, events, word choices, and a lot of other “stuff?” I don’t doubt that every fight that is occurring on Facebook pages, Twitter posts, or blog comment sections starts from a genuine place.  [...]

Who They Might Have Been: Understanding What 1 in 68 Really Means

We all knew the rate of autism was climbing, as it has been from the beginning.  What is frustrating is that a local news station would rather run a last minute segment on how to get ready for bikini season than to interview a gifted autism advocate a autism Mom, speaker, writer and long standing member of the autism community raising awareness and understanding of [...]

By | 2014-04-07T09:00:06+00:00 April 7th, 2014|Categories: Autism / Asperger’s|Tags: , , , , |13 Comments

Two Generation of Autism – Similarities and Differences

Someone once asked me to define the similarities and differences between the Hubs and our 7yo. On the surface, the differences are huge- due to the fact that one has 25+ years of trying to fit in socially and being (seriously. lack of better term) beaten into social submission. So I wrote a ginormous list, but only chose a few to share with you since [...]

An Interview with a Parent Navigating Two Generations of Autism

If you missed last month’s post in this series, you can click here, or join me for a short recap: • An Interview with a parent navigating Two Generations of Autism, Michelle Christiansen. So, what’s like living with two generations of Autism? Um… it’s not easy, that’s for sure. But it’s our life. Slowly, gradually, we’ve adjusted and it seems like we’re constantly adjusting, but [...]

How Can We Be Jolly – A Family vs A Residential Treatment Facility

Everywhere we look, there are reminders that this is the season.  The season to be jolly.  The season of good cheer and hope. I blog regularly over at my site whynotfathers.com.  For some readers, what I am about to say may not make a lot of sense.  I recommend you review the above site. :)  Yes a bit of shameless self-promotion.  I hope my editor [...]

Two Generations of Autism – The Beginning

The Beginning of a new Writing Series on Special Happens.... I am Michelle. I started blogging with Special Happens as a form of therapy for myself-discovering how to cope and raise a child on the autism spectrum.  I believe in sharing stories, circumstances and how we handled them with each other-because we all have something to learn from each other. I also believe that no [...]

The Black and White of Recommended Age and Autism

Recommended Age. You know the phrase--it is located prominently on the front of every single toy that you consider purchasing for your child.  You know the label--the one that triggers flashbacks to every developmental report you have received from the psychiatrist, school IEP team, the pediatrician, etc. You know the reports--the ones that give developmental age versus your child’s biological age.  And then you know [...]

By | 2013-12-02T09:00:48+00:00 December 2nd, 2013|Categories: Autism / Asperger’s|Tags: , , |0 Comments

The Passing of David Doe, The Autism Whisperer

Without the proper time to know him… just long enough for the connection to be made, the importance of his voice, really the importance of his life story illuminated from within him. But we lost him. One of our contributors, David Doe, passed away last week from various medical complications. From his wife: Everyone at Special Happens feels the sadness and loss within our community. [...]

By | 2013-06-11T14:32:26+00:00 June 11th, 2013|Categories: Autism / Asperger’s, Events / Activities, National|Tags: , , |0 Comments

Turning Off the Blue Light for Alex Spourdalakis

In recent years the diagnosis of autism has skyrocketed.  Children range from mildly effected with some stimming, sensory over load and issues in the area of speech and communication.  This level earned the name pervasive developmental disorder, kind of a mild touch of autism if you will. There is a middle ground, and then there is what the rest of us know as autism, a [...]

Misunderstood – When Child Protective Services is Called

My phone rang late one afternoon, the voice on the other end breathless and worried, “Cheryl I need you to come talk to the police, they are calling CPS on Kate again, some neighbor saw Mark outside without any pants on. I just pulled up in my driveway and saw the cops in here, can you come quickly? Thanks.”  The phone went dead before I [...]

Today I am a Special Needs Mother, and It's Hard

For the record, I consider myself just a Mom.  I don't look at my situation with John and say, "I am a special needs Mom."  Handicapped? no, my son is not handicapped, that title is reserved for individuals in much worse mental and physical shape than John.  Today, however reality slapped me in the face, yes I am a special needs Mother, like it or [...]

Autism – A Need-To-Know Basis?

I am surprised by the number of parents who ask me if it is wise to tell their children that they have autism or should they wait until the child is older, like in high school to tell them. I think one of the main reasons this question even comes up is because of a parent's concern that the child will feel more out-casted bearing [...]

By | 2013-05-09T09:00:18+00:00 May 9th, 2013|Categories: Autism / Asperger’s, Family, Medical / Therapies, Parenting, Relationships|2 Comments

Autism Rule #1 – Always Assume Intelligence in Autism

If there was any one article I hope would sink into your memory I would hope it to be this one. It is the most important rule and at times is the most difficult to be confident in. The most frustrating part of Autism right now is the lack of professionals available to parents and children who have the expertise and real knowledge on how [...]

Autism is… Bubble Baths and Weighted Blankets

Autism is sensory issues and meltdowns. It’s the colors pink and purple, all things princess, and brown hair with gold and red highlights---which can never be curly enough. It’s spinning and rocking with abandon, laughing at inappropriate times, expression through art. Buckets of “real artist markers,” sketchbooks, doodles on every available scrap of paper, leaving me without a place to take notes when I’m on the [...]

How Autism Can Fix the Education System

I give my child's school all the credit in the world. They're amazing. But they're still bound by an education system that is fundamentally flawed. It's a one size, fits all system that teaches, tests and grades all children by the same standards no matter what their strengths, weaknesses or other differences may be. I can't help but wonder how many math or science or [...]

By | 2013-04-15T09:01:44+00:00 April 15th, 2013|Categories: Autism / Asperger’s|Tags: , , , |1 Comment

The Best of Autism Awareness in 2013

April 2nd is World Autism Awareness Day, and kicks off National Autism Awareness Month. Some will say that Autism Awareness is every day, some will find the importance of our Nation and the World coming together with one unified purpose of enlightening just one more person about Autism.  Some writing will leave you in tears; some will lend you to cheer.  Still others will produce [...]

Worst Play Date Experience… Or Was It?

J’s worst ‘playdate’ experience was probably also the best. I’m pretty sure he doesn’t remember what happened three years ago, but I do. It changed our perspective, our lives. See, back before he had any official diagnosis, we would just chalk J’s screaming up to his speech delay. Sure, some days were worse than others, but we just couldn’t seem to get a handle on [...]

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