Tuesday, April 30, 2013

My speech

It's done! I did my mini speech on Autism for my daughters school today! I am NOT a public speaker, in fact, I have severe anxiety of people, groups, etc. So, to say the least, I was a nervous wreck! I stammered and messed up. I was a panicky wreck lol!

However, I survived, I did the speech and it was fairly successful. I got complements on both my speech and the tutu that my daughter wore, to represent the rainbow of diversity in the spectrum and on the puzzle piece ribbons that are for Autism Awareness!

So, I thought I would share my speech & a BIG thank you must go out to G-Mags for her help with information & to Meghan for being mentally by my side through out my speech and reminding me to speak from the heart!

Here is my speech:

Hi Everyone! I am here today to speak to you on behalf of Parent council about Autism. Thank you for having me here today, I am honoured to have been asked to speak! Now, many of you, may be too young to truly understand Autism & that's okay. I'll be honest with you, a lot of adults and even parents of children with Autism don't truly understand it.

Autism is a complex brain disorder, that can cause speech, behavioural & sensory issues, to name a few.

Autism comes in all shapes & sizes. Adults and children alike can have it. There is NO look to Autism. Autistic people are unique, just like every one of you are.

*Insert me showing the Autism Awareness giant magnet ribbon*

This ribbon I have here says Autism Awareness. A lot of causes & charities have similar ribbons, to raise awareness for many different topics. Have any of you seen a ribbon like this before?

Now this particular ribbon is covered in puzzle pieces. There is MAJOR significance to Autism in puzzle pieces.

I'm sure nearly, if not all of you, have tried to do at least ONE puzzle in your life, am I right? Did you get frustrated when 2 pieces didn't fit together? Well, that is similar to how the brain of an autistic person works. They can't get 2 parts to work together & they get frustrated. Sometimes they can't form the words or explain themselves & this can cause a major meltdown. They're literally not capable of controlling it. So, you know when you are in the grocery store and want that chocolate bar but mom or dad says no? You know that tantrum you throw? Well, you can control that tantrum. People with Autism have meltdowns which are different, because they can't be in control of their reactions.

Now, you may have noticed the puzzle pieces on this ribbon are diverse in their shapes & colours. Remember how before winter break, you guys learned about different religions celebrations and went from class to class to learn about them and do activities involving them? Well the shapes and colours on this ribbon represent the diversity of Autism. How it doesn't discriminate against any colour, or race, or religion.

You may also have noticed that the ribbon is BRIGHT! That's to signal HOPE!

This ribbon also represents 7 words to people & families affected by Autism. These words are: Educate, Advocate, Accept, Hope, Support, Faith & lastly Love!

Many of those are things you guys have learned throughout the year, when you have your monthly word. Like April as we all know, since its finishing up today, was Honesty. December was Diversity. You've had courage as well. Just to name a few.

Anyone who has Autism is just like you & I. Unique in there OWN special way!

Always Unique Totally Intelligent Sometimes Mysterious

April is Autism Awareness Month and April 2nd is World Autism Day! So, thank you, to each and every one of you, that wore blue today! Seeing that sea of blue out there, like my daughter and I are wearing, is amazing! It shows us, that you guys are accepting and dedicated! You're not discriminating!

Now I would like to bring my daughter to your attention before I finish here. Her outfit today, is in full support of Autism. Her blue shirt, to match you guys and help light your school up blue for Autism this April. Her rainbow tutu here, is to represent the diversity and the puzzle pieces in the ribbon! You will also notice a singular multicoloured puzzle piece on her shirt, it's to represent Autism. She will be wearing her shirt with her father and I, on June 2nd with all of the team from Pure Source, to support Ebony, Angelyn & every single person out there with Autism! In the office, you will see a poster about the walk!

Thank you for taking the time, to have me here on behalf of my family & parent council, to speak to you all about Autism! I hope that you have learned a few things & that if you have further questions you won't hesitate to ask your principal, teachers or go home and ask your family for more information! You guys are a new generation that can help make a huge difference in the future of Autism!!!

So, that was my speech! The kids were really intent and I found so many to be intrigued. They interacted with the questions and later, after it was done, I did have a couple kids ask me questions. They wanted websites they could go to, to learn about it! They want to know more about how to deal with adults with autism. How to help their parents be more willing to open up about it or learn about it! Truly an amazing experience! I am just behind amazed by it! Even kids in Junior Kindergarten and Senior Kindergarten understood the puzzle analogy. It was just an amazing experience!

I feel an amazing rush after doing that speech! I just feel like, I know, I got through to some of those people and they learned something! To me, that's worth more then anything!

Due to school safety rules, I couldn't actually tell people my daughter was Autistic. Both because its "private information" that is not to be distributed to unwarranted personal (it's in her application that until I get her approval for an EA, I am not to disclose any personal information, that may affect teachers, EA's and other professionals involved in her care and education, to know more information then needs to be proved for safety and educational circumstances, because it could cause them to make "other opinions" that could affect her results in getting the care she needs) & because the principal did not want kids, who may not otherwise know, to find out that she is and risk her further being bullied.


Yesterday, was like a break through in our little Autism world! My daughter came into my room, crawled into my bed, and gave me a kiss on the lips. Just a quick, simple, barely touched peck BUT a kiss none the less!!! It was such an exciting moment for me! Kisses are extremely rare!! Very very very few and far between and NEVER on the mouth!

This was a huge deal to me! My daughters just a little over a month away from her 6th birthday and I am SO excited that she made this progress. No clue how many more kisses will come and how far between them, but hey, even if that was the one and only one I were to get, it would be amazing!!! I am one PROUD mama!

Autism Awareness month, as it comes to a close!

Wow! April has been an amazing month! So much has gone on. Autism Awareness month was a great one for my family! We went to our local city hall on April 2nd for the flag raising. It was great! My daughter loved it! She met the Mayor and our local MP, which she was so thrilled about! It was "so cool" in her words!

We registered my daughter for the June 2nd Autism walk. She's excited to be fundraising for that! And she is IN LOVE with her outfit for it! She has a blue shirt that says Ebony's ABCs and has a puzzle piece on it, but it also has a picture of HER on it! She think's its awesome! Then she has a random tut, that I made her, to represent the colours of the puzzle pieces on the awareness ribbons! It's awesome, if I do say so myself!

Today, her school is having a blue shirt day, to raise awareness & I am giving a mini presentation on Autism. I was honoured to be asked to do this. But I admit, I am nervous to speak in front of 200 people!

We've been teaching our daughter a lot more about autism this month. Trying to help her better understand what she goes through. As well as what other people who have Autism or are on the spectrum may experience!

We've talked in length with people about Autism. We have shared our story with our people! It's been a fun, educational and emotional month! But, successful! We've done our best to spread the word & we hope others have done the same!

Just because April has come to a close though, doesn't mean our awareness should stop! AUTISM AWARENESS, IT MATTERS!!! MAKE IT A DAILY EVENT!!!