This guest post is by Monica who has a young boy on the autism spectrum. This blog is part of our new blog series highlighting Autism Speaks 10 Years of Progress: A Lifetime of Hope. How has Autism Speaks touched your life? Email us at AS10Years@gmail.com!
When my son, Jayson, was diagnosed with Autism at the age of 14 months, I knew I needed resources. I did not have anyone in my life that had experience with Autism. It was all brand new to me. Jayson was diagnosed on a Monday in November. On the very next day, I googled “Autism Speaks." I had to find out if there was a local chapter and find some way to connect to this new diagnosis.
By Wednesday I had emailed the local chapter asking if I could help plan a walk. For me, volunteering with Autism Speaks has been my coping mechanism. It’s the place I put my energy into in order to sort out the reason for our journey. I have met some of the most incredible people while volunteering with Autism Speaks. I have been able to connect with moms and dads of kiddos on the spectrum and some of them are now my greatest friends. I have met other volunteers and employees that have been so resourceful to our family.
Anytime I need some information on something new my son is going through, I just pull up the website and search and the answer is almost always there. If I can’t find it myself, Autism Speaks staff is always a phone call or email away. Their prompt response to my current struggle, makes finding the answer so simple. The research Autism Speaks is doing as well as the information they share with the families, helps me feel like I now have a better understanding of the Autism world and feel more educated. I love the Light It Up Blue Campaign.
It is something I can get my community involved in and it really helps us feel like people are listening. I remember getting that diagnosis on that cold Monday in November and feeling crushed. Wondering how in the world I was going to help my son and how our family was going to make it through this. I remember feeling so alone and not knowing where to go for answers. I truly felt helpless and hopeless. Now just a three short years later, and thru the help of Autism Speaks, our family has a much brighter outlook. I couldn’t be more grateful for all that they do.
Have a story you want to share about how Autism Speaks touched your life? Email us at AS10Years@gmail.com.