This guest post is from Jessica Bensom, one of our walk volunteers for Philadelphia's Walk Now for Autism Speaks.
In honor of the Autism walk this weekend, I wanted to share the story I wrote for my son.
Now that he is school aged, the other children are old enough to see that he is different but not old enough to understand why. I thought there should be a children's book that explains Autism to kids. When I went to write a social story, this is what came out.
He was always different
And set himself apart
His mommy said he's special
And she meant it from her heart.
Sometimes his voice got louder
Or repeated things he said
Sometimes he can't control the thoughts
Racing through his head.
His mommy said “Sometimes we're quiet
And sometimes we get loud
But you try your hardest special one.
You just stand out from the crowd”.
Sometimes he preferred to be alone
He wasn't being mean.
Often crowds could make him scared
And he would cry and cause a scene.
His mommy would just hold him
Until his fear was through.
“Don't worry if they're looking.
Just pretend it's me and you”.
Sometimes he liked to jump about
Like he was overcome with joy.
He get's excited for no reason.
“My special little boy”.
Sometimes he would fidget,
Sometimes he'd run around.
Sometimes his arms would flap about
And he'd have trouble calming down.
His mommy said “I know it's hard”
And kissed him on the cheek.
“But we can work on sitting still.
You are special. You're unique”.
Sometimes he would giggle
When there wasn't even a joke.
But his laughter was contagious,
And smiles he'd provoke.
His mommy told him “It's okay,
It's always good to smile.
But there are times that we calm down,
And be quiet for a while”
Sometimes he'd start to cry a bit
When he wasn't really sad.
And people would confuse this
With signs of being bad.
But he's not bad, he's special.
His mommy tells him so.
“Don't let people tell you different.
Sometimes they just don't know”.
Sometimes he may wander off,
Sometimes he'll try to run.
Mommy says “Careful, stay close.
My special little son”.
“I know you try to listen
And try your hardest to be good.
And I will also try my best.
I wouldn't change things if I could”.
He may not always hug you
Or look you in the eye.
Sometimes you'll think he doesn't hear
And sometimes he'll act shy.
Sometimes he can not focus
Or pay attention from the start.
His mommy tells him “I know you.
You are special. You are smart”.
“Some can't understand these things
And have many questions why.
But don't you let that bring you down,
My special little guy”.
Sometimes it's hard to understand
How people need their space.
He may like to sit real close
Or talk right to your face.
He gets excited, sometimes, to talk
To those he likes so much.
Mommy says “Move back a bit.
You don't always have to touch”.
People give him funny looks
And sometimes they would stare.
But his mommy tells him “Pay no mind.
A boy like you is rare”.
“Sometimes, people, they will judge
And they won't always understand.
But mommy is always on your side.
I'll be there to hold to hold your hand”.
“Some people find it hard to grasp,
A way they can not be.
You are not just different. You are special.
And you are perfect to me”.
The Autism Speaks blog features opinions from people throughout the autism community. Each blog represents the point of view of the author and does not necessarily reflect Autism Speaks' beliefs or point of view.