Do You Remember 13?

Lil D through the window

Do you remember 13? Seventh grade or eight grade maybe? A mixture of hormones, uncertainty, a growing sense of self and figuring out how to fit in with the right friends without compromising your true self? And what is that true self? Is it growing out of what your parents taught you, or is it developing independently apart from the external influences in your life?Do you remember 13? Not wanting to hang around your family all the time, wanting to be out of the house more, but you aren’t old … [Read more...]

The Jenin Autism Project – Rock Star Siblings

Siblings make matching cards.

Melissa Diamond and the rest of the team are still in Jenin, in the West Bank of the Palestinian territory for the next few months working on “The Jenin Autism Project,” part of “A Global Voice for Autism.” They are there to help parents learn about autism and Applied Behavior Analysis and help connect them to other autism resources as well as building their own supportive network. They are blogging their experiences here to share their efforts in figuring out how to best help children with autis … [Read more...]

Words Matter in Autism Land and Beyond

words matter

One might call me a pushover – my husband often does, saying that I’d rather keep quiet and not ruffle any feathers, except when it comes to Lil D. And even with him, in forging relationships with his teachers, therapists, aides, caregivers, bus drivers and bus aides, babysitters and everyone else throughout the years, my approach has been to win them and teach them with kindness, firmness and openness.To try and be open-minded as to what they feel and know in their relationships with Lil D, … [Read more...]

The Charity of Messy Drawers

drawers

We went back and forth on it for months. I’d try to down play it, hide that it annoyed the heck out of me too, so that the husband wouldn’t fixate on it. But the fact was that this habit of Lil D’s just continued unabated, no matter what we tried.In the grand scheme of autism things, it’s nothing big – he is constantly opening and slamming drawers, taking something out of one and dropping it in another. And anything he finds on any surface area of the house goes into some drawer. We have fork … [Read more...]

The Jenin Autism Project – Community Awareness with an Autism Lecture at Al Quds University

103 people in attendence

Melissa Diamond and the rest of the team are still in Jenin, in the West Bank of the Palestinian territory for the next few months working on “The Jenin Autism Project,” part of “A Global Voice for Autism.” They are there to help parents learn about autism and Applied Behavior Analysis and help connect them to other autism resources as well as building their own supportive network. They are blogging their experiences here to share their efforts in figuring out how to best help children with autis … [Read more...]

A Moment Between Friends

autism friends

I have been silent on the blogging front for the past ten days or so, grinding away at this thing called life. Living gets in the way of writing sometimes, you see. And I’ve been contemplating a lot of things – hard truths, let’s call them – which maybe I’ll be brave enough to explore another day with you all.These are the thoughts that press upon you when you are supposed to be working, or after the kids go to bed and you collapse on the sofa with your husband of nearly 15 years, and he has … [Read more...]

To Have and to Hold

Lil D upon waking up

Last night after putting you to bed, after turning off the bedroom light and turning the closet light on and leaving the door ajar, after turning on your white noise machine, after uttering my usual nighttime prayer for you, after rubbing coconut oil on the lingering scars on your face and your consistently chapped lips, after covering you with your favorite heavy blanket and kissing your forehead, I left the room and shut the door.Throughout all this you said nary a word to me. You giggled, … [Read more...]


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