Ah, April. It rolls around every year, without fail. Prior to 2013, it was just a month in the year. I had honestly no idea that is was technically World Autism Awareness Month/Week/Day (April 2nd). I did not become ‘autism aware’ until my daughter Milla was diagnosed with autism in December 2012, shortly after her second birthday. Suddenly my Facebook feed is filled with ‘Autism Awareness’ posts and events every year.
Arguments for and against. Light it up blue! We hate blue! Share the puzzle piece! Puzzle pieces are insulting! Awareness! Acceptance!
Then April passes and everyone just slips quietly back to regular programming. Except for those living on the spectrum and the families and friends who love them. What is this ‘regular programming’ you speak off??
However April is the month that people are more open to ‘tune in’ to what life is like slightly askew of societies norms, so who am I to let an opportunity slide for a glimpse in to a world only some of us are privy to be let in to.
These are Milla’s stories. I am only sharing my insight in to them, however limited. One day she may have the words and inclination to share them herself.
Where it all started. Sitting in a small office, full of fear and empty of knowledge.
My first “World Autism Awareness Month.” Where I wondered what the hell I was supposed to be fighting for?
We are a team, this girl and I.
God this period was hard. So hard. But as hard as it was on us as Milla’s parents, what really breaks my heart was how hard it must have been for her.
That one time I was really pissed off.
Some lessons I learned about dealing with funding, resources and therapy. The hard way.
I know, my child does not look like they have autism. Remind me again what autism looks like?
Miss Milla has come a long way. Our normal may not look like other families, but it’s ours.
Autism Awareness Day, 2016. Acceptance. Milla, a combination of the best and worst traits of my husband and I, of her environment, of her autism.
2017- Miss Milla May. To be continued.