Friday, April 27, 2012

To “I Wish I Didn’t Have Aspergers”: An #AutismPositivity2012 Flash Blog Event

Okay readers, I am participating in the Autism Positivity Flash Blog project.  Click on the tag below to learn more about it. I am also referring you to Leah Kelley's blog for her INSPIRING words about embracing autism positively.

It took me a long time to embrace autism.  And as you've read in many of my posts, it was because of fear.  Reading Leah's post got me thinking as to how I've embraced autism.  And honesty, it was with my guards up, like a boxer going into the ring. 

Race is getting older.  We talk about autism with him.  We have to because he needs to love himself for the amazing person he is.  And I think when he's on the playground at school, that's a hard thing for him to do sometimes.  Because kids can be mean, so he's been going to recess with his guards up.  We both have our guards up.  And we're both having to learn to relax, and embrace autism positively.

This month is Autism Awareness Month.  Race and I went around to the classes in his school and talked about autism.  He had plenty to say about it too: he told the fifth grade class that he has a hard time talking sometimes, and sometimes he gets crazy when it's really loud.  It was pretty awesome when he got to show off his map and geography skills to the older classes.  They thought it was pretty amazing.  I still watch him with complete amazement, as he studies his atlas, and when asked, can instantly point out Papua New Guinea or Qatar or Malawi or just name a country for him and he'll probably know it. 

Race, you are amazing.  And part of what makes you amazing is your autism.  You have so much to offer the world, and so much to teach all of us.

Another thing I don't talk about enough is how Race's autism effects Witten.  All too often, we read or hear about how siblings of autistic kids are resentful because of the attention that is demanded from parents.  We talk to Witten about autism.  I really feel it is just as important for Witt to embrace autism as it is for Race.  I try to catch Witt, in those moments when he is confused and frustrated by his brother and the way he does things; and we'll go talk, or go on a date. 

Witten, you are amazing.  And you're more patient than people give you credit for.  Because you are in so many ways, a big brother to your big brother. 

In the New York Times there was an article talking about how autism in families has a higher stress rate than having other disabilities within the family.  I think that by embracing autism positively, stress can be lessened.  And by John and I knowing this, and being aware of this, our family can only get stronger. 

Embracing autism positively will only make us stronger.

Today is the final day of Autism Awareness Month.
At the top of this post is a badge for a great initiative for a flash blog/positive message event to send a positive message about autism, to a person who googled “I wish I didn’t have Aspergers” and every person doing so from today on.

This Autism Positivity Flash Blog Event is the brainchild of Thinking About Perspectives, a group of bloggers committed to increasing autism awareness and acceptance via open and respectful dialogue.  They are:  30 Days of AutismOutrunning the StormThe Third GlanceAspie Kid,Flappiness IsQuirky and LaughingLife on the SpectrumFairy Tale ForgottenThe Aspie Side of Life, and Inner Aspie.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Since We're Friends

Last week and this week, the boy's schools invited me to come in and share a word or two about autism.  I read this story...lots of times.  It was awesome.  Read it.

Thanks to Ms. Kathy at the Tae Kwon Do studio who spent an entire week talking about autism as well.  Thanks Ms. Kathy. 

For one of my classes I wrote a short story about an autistic boy.  I figured I know a little about the subject.  Anyway, bragging moment everybody, where's the drum roll........ I got invited to read it to the college, and apparently its good enough to publish!  I'll start that whole process this summer. 

Just spreading the awareness.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Ragnar 2012

I had soooooo much fun running with these ladies. What a super fun, exhausting, painful, sleepless, awesome weekend.  Go Miss Matched Socks!

Look there I am somewhere in between Buckeye and Anthem on my 9.5 mile leg.

Look, there I am again.  Same leg of the race.  Those reflective vests were really reflective!  We didn't get any pictures of our "running through the night legs.  But on that one I ran a 4.2 mile along Carefree Highway.  Yep, that one was an adventure all in itself.  The runners were pretty spread out by that point so it was just me and my headlamp and my sister's can of pepper spray against the dark wild of the desert.  Awesome. Of course I had my cell phone on me also. 

 Somewhere in Scottsdale on my 6.5 mile leg.

So, 200 miles later, a missing toenail and three blisters later, we were so happy to be done and ready to sleep in our own beds, but sad to leave our new awesome friends. 

There's another one for the bucket list!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

And the Winner is...


the lucky winner for Mockingbird is:

And the lucky winner of Thinking In Pictures is:


I'll be contacting you shortly by email. 

Please hop back to Team Armstrong any time to read about the world from our perspective... I will also be doing more autism give-aways throughout the year. 

Happy Autism Awareness Month!!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Autism Awareness Hop 2012

Annual Autism Awareness Giveaway Hop
April 11th to 17th
Hosted by:

Lindsay @ Just Another Book Addict:
Heather @ Fire and Ice Photo:
Pixie @ Page Turners:
Kathy @ I Am A Reader, Not A Writer:

April is a big month at our place.  New research is showing now 1 in 88 kids is diagnosed with ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder).  It effects all of us and awareness is so very important. Talk to your kids about autism.  As a parent of a child with autism, one of the big struggles we deal with is social interaction.  Again, please talk to your kids about autism, we need more awareness and understanding from the younger generation, from the peers of these amazing kids. Especially since the numbers are only rising.
So, in honor of our boy Race, I'm giving away TWO of my favorite books:

*You do NOT have to be a follower to enter.  
*I have one copy of each of these books available.
*To be entered in the drawing, please leave your name and a way to contact you in the comment area of this post.  Also, we are all effected by autism in one way or another: tell us about it in your comment if you like.

Learn more about autism:

Autism Society of America:

Autism Speaks:

Definition of Autism:

Also, check out more blogs below joined in the Autism Hop.
Good luck and Happy Autism Awareness Month!