Tag Archives: Autism Postivity Flashblog

I Deserve That: Acceptance, Love and Self-Care ‪#‎AutismPositivity2015‬

By Kimberly Faith

Text reads The Autism Positivity Project perspectives of hope, encouragement, understanding and pride. Background is divided into five brightly colored sections each with a silhouette of a brightly colored hand

I was diagnosed in June of 2013. One of the things the psychologist who was doing my testing asked was “Why did I suspect I was Autistic?”

I told her that it was my husband who first brought it to my attention and after that I started really digging in. I started adjusting things for myself in the same ways I had adjusted them for my son and it worked for me.

I will have to admit though, accepting that I needed adjustments and accommodations in my life was hard. It wasn’t because I was ashamed, it’s just my whole life I had it drilled into my head “If you try harder you’ll do better”. I was told that I needed to just get over the things that really impacted me (change in routine, unexpected visits from people, sensory aversions, anxiety, my misophonia, my depression).

I even had people use certain things that truly hurt me to their advantage, for entertainment… to get a laugh. (mainly my dad and grandfather).

My husband had deemed me a control freak for so many years and he would deliberately do things that left me in the state of perpetual meltdowns and panic attacks because… who knows why. (no, he doesn’t do that anymore)

So, for the majority of my life the people who were supposed to be my support made my life extremely hard and that caused me to have a great deal of internalized ableism. My self esteem dropped to nearly nothing and I thought I didn’t deserve anything…

I didn’t deserve to draw boundaries
I didn’t deserve to be happy
I didn’t deserve a break.
I didn’t deserve to ask for and receive help.

So acceptance of myself, my limitations and the fact that I really did deserve all the things that I felt I didn’t, has been hard. I have a lot of guilt about a lot of the things that I need to have in my everyday life in order for me to be functional, but I am working on that.

Self love is something I am also working on, you can’t fully accept yourself if you don’t first love yourself.

Loving myself means saying no when I really can’t do something (or even when I don’t want to do something).

Loving myself includes asking for the help and understanding that I do deserve to receive help.

Loving myself also involves allowing myself to be happy, drawing boundaries, and knowing I deserve to be able to take time to care for myself.

I give my all in everything I do. I’m a perfectionist (with very horrible anxiety). I am a protector of others and have been my whole life (that’s one of the things that can happen when you grow up in an alcoholic home). I am a justice seeker and I become very upset when I see or read about injustices.

So for me, self care is unplugging from social media sometimes.
It is not reading the news.
It is asking others to not to start conversations about current social issues with me when I’m engaging in self care.
It’s taking long walks.
It’s asking for no one to knock on my bedroom door while I do yoga sometimes in the evenings.
It’s getting myself a frozen coffee (I have issues with food, so this is a big thing.. and I love coffee)
It’s understanding that I am an introvert and I need a lot of downtime in order to recharge.
It’s blaring music in the living room and dancing about when no one is home.

Text reads Acceptance, love and self care: I deserve that. Image is a fair skinned brunette female with a yellow flower behind her ear and a brightly colored bag on her shoulder. Behind her is a hiking trail and lots of trees.

Text reads Acceptance, love and self care: I deserve that. Image is a fair skinned brunette female with a yellow flower behind her ear and a brightly colored bag on her shoulder.
Behind her is a hiking trail and lots of trees.

It’s practicing not feeling guilty.

 

I use to do some of those things and would justify it by saying “I am a mother and I deserve some downtime so I can be the best I can for my kids”

But now I am learning to say “I am a human being and I deserve that” No justification required.

 

 

Original post: http://eccentrickimmy1.blogspot.ca/2015/05/i-deserve-that-acceptance-love-and-self.html

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Ladles of LOVE #AutismPositivity2015

By Kelly Green

autismpositivitybanner3

For the 4th Autism Positivity Day Flash Blog you know what I am serving up.
Same bat time, same bat channel!!

Ladles of LOVE. Yes, big oversized spoons “ full of it.”

Nothing more comforting than a large helping of LOVE, in an “over sized spoon” A spoon that will refill with love and support for ALL Autistic people. All day, every day. Infinitely.

It’s what we all deserve. It is what we are ALL calling for, yearning for, working for. An every day world, full of: full on love. Where people look at each other through the eyes of acceptance. Without comparison. Knowing full well that each and every one of us has a special mission. Whatever that is, whatever that looks like and it is spectacularly beautiful no matter how it diverges from you and your subset of beauty.

There is no comparing humanity. It is all beautifully needed, it is all equally an owner of love and acceptance. There is no marketplace in the universe for authentic love. Sadly, people try to own it. They falsely try to create or capture it, re-work it,  package it and sell it. However, it doesn’t quite work that way. Just like everything else of true value in this world, love is FREE. We are born of love and creation to be love and creation. Love always was and always will be, free and easy to give. We should ALL accept that.

Somewhere along the way people and nations have forgotten that about ourselves and the humanity we serve (each other.) Societies have become harsh, selfish and at times akin to a rancid pack of comparison making, judgmental brutes.

Humanity so utterly inhumane.

So, for Autism Positivity day 2015 we wish self-love and self-care for everyone. Autistic people and the people that love them. We all have triggers. We all have boundaries. Let’s make each other aware of what these consist of and support them respectfully!

#AutismPositivity2015Together with infinite ‘O LOVE’ and ACCEPTANCE.

Please check out this wonderful video of the 2015 AutismHWY.com Chalk Festival: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=51tXjG9G1Qc

 

Original post at: http://autismhwy.com/blog/?p=5693 (Includes video)

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An interview (sort of) with MissG, an Autistic 7 year old… #AutismPositivity2015

By Michelle Sutton

Do you think it is important to look after yourself?  
Yes

Why?
I’m not answering

Can you tell me some ways you look after yourself? 
Ugh…. I’m not answering your questions. 

Are you feeling stressed right now? 
mmm hmmm

So, is not answering my questions a way of looking after yourself because you feel stressed?
mmmmmm

Is it ok if I just write down some things I know you do to look after yourself, and put that in the blog?
yeah

For the record, MissG had agreed to answer some questions for this article when I asked her yesterday, but when it came to doing it today didn’t want to. She is a bit out of sorts lately, we’ve had a really busy schedule for a few weeks, she is tired, overwhelmed and stressed.  I’m glad she agreed to let me share some things about how she looks after herself, though, because it is something we focus on a lot in our house and she has some great strategies! Everything I have written below I have her permission to share.

#AutismPositivity2015
Caring for herself by not talking

MissG does speak to communicate. Most of the time. Sometimes she refuses, as you saw above. She is learning to recognise when conversation, and the associated mental processing energy, is too much for her. Unless it is an issue of safety for some reason, we do not discourage her from retreating. As she gets older we will explore whether typing to communicate when speech is difficult is an alternative for her. Right now she finds writing very difficult, so sometimes we use the feelings book she made herself.#AutismPositivity2015
Caring for herself by stimming

MissG stims by licking her lips and the skin around her mouth when she is stressed. We have never discouraged her. Sometimes however her stimming can cause damage to her skin, so we have talked about looking after her skin. MissG initially chose to do that by applying a soothing barrier cream to her skin when it felt sore. More recently she expressed a desire not to lick all the time because people had started to comment on her skin looking dry and red. She had her own suggestion for a replacement behaviour. She said,”When I don’t lick I feel bitey. I know I can’t bite other people, so I can bite my finger. But that can hurt, so can you get me some gum to chew?” And a few days later, on the way to the hair dresser, “Can we get some mints? I will need to sit still, but it will be hard because she will touch my head. Some mints will help me feel better.” Gum and mints are now always in my bag, along with the cream she uses. MissG still stims by licking, but now there are alternatives that  she has chosen when she wants to use them.

#AutismPositivity2015
Caring for herself by getting help with sleeping

MissG does not sleep well. She has a lot of trouble getting to sleep and usually wakes at least twice a night. Not sleeping well adds to stress. When I asked the Paediatrician about this, he called it “Sleep Initiation Disorder” (meh!) and said some Melatonin might help. MissG’s sleep disturbances are only really a problem when external things impose their routines on her, for example when she needs to be at swimming lessons earlier in the morning than she would usually wake, or if we have an appointment to keep, but because she is homeschooled she can usually keep her own sleep schedule. I have noticed though that after a few months of going to sleep “late” and waking “late” that MissG begins to feel stressed and overwhelmed more frequently. So, we have talked about it, and come up with a system that works well for her. Usually MissG chooses when to take Melatonin to help initiate sleep. She will usually choose to take it 2 or 3 nights a week. If she or I notice that she is going to sleep very late regularly, or if she is experiencing overwhelm more often than usual and we can’t see any other obvious reason for it, she will take Melatonin every night for a 2 to 3 month period to help her body reset its circadian rhythms. Generally about 2 weeks into this period of nightly use both she and I can see she is feeling better overall. After about 6 weeks I notice MissG begins to tell me she doesn’t want to take it anymore, because she feels she sleeps differently with the Melatonin and once she is not overtired all the time that feeling is not nice, so we negotiate how much longer she needs it to complete the reset period. She is never forced to take it.

#AutismPositivity2015
Caring for herself by being in control of decisions about her body.

This is the key. I hope you noticed it in all the above points.

“she refuses” “we do not discourage” “her own suggestion” “alternatives that  she has chosen” “come up with a system that works well for her” “is never forced”

MissG’s body is hers and hers alone. She makes the choices about her self care. She is in control. So, while this blog post has not turned out anywhere near the way I had planned, I am not concerned at all. My role as a parent is to present options for her consideration when her 7 years do not give her the experience to know what all the possibilities are. My role is not to impose my desires on her. I guide, I recommend, I support, but I do not choose. This is so important in helping MissG become her own best advocate.

Having control over the choices made in the care of her own body is the most important thing for MissG to become confident in as she grows up. She will be a disabled adult, and my advocating for acceptance, love and self-care, with her right to be in control and make her own choices, is one of the most powerful gifts I can give her.

image: An expanse of grass with large leafed plants in the background at the top of the image. In the top right corner is a fair skinned child wearing black pants and a dark pink shirt, who is running toward the camera and flapping their hands. In the top left corner are the words “fb / amazing adventures autism”. At the bottom of the image are the words “She will be a disabled adult, and my advocating for acceptance, love and self-care, with her right to be in control and make her own choices, is one of the most powerful gifts I can give her.  Michelle Sutton”

Original post: http://amazingadventuresautism.blogspot.com.au/2015/05/amazing-adventures-acceptance-love-and.html

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Radical Acceptance and Love: #AutismPositivity2015

By Heather Clark

Being a writer has been my good fortune in the Autism community. When I began to record our journey here, I did so because I thought that we were traveling in a direction unknown. Most of the parents of Autistic children I first encountered while searching for answers and support followed the belief that their child needed therapies, remedies, and miracle cures. I wanted to walk in love. I wrote that down. I was fortunate because though I felt alone as a parent, the Autistic community started trickling into my life. They were already walking in love. Radical love. They gave me some.

As things went on, I came to understand that Autistic people were in a battle for basic human rights. Sharing the joy and comfort my acceptance has created in the relationship I have with my children was important, but I realized my writing is significant to more than just our family. It allowed me to share parts of the Autistic story. They don’t want therapies, remedies, and miracle cures. Autistics want acceptance. It is their right to be included. It is their right to govern their own bodies, minds, and lives. It is their right as human beings to be treated with respect. “All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights” and that means Autistic people too.

The general public is so overwhelmingly afraid of Autism, the acceptance I have learned to give my children is often portrayed as extremist. I do what most parents do. I love my kids. Mine are Autistic and suddenly my love becomes inconceivable. The record I keep here is deemed deviant. Eccentric. Indulgent. I must be mad. But, it’s the distance between the wrong and right, between fear and acceptance, hate and love, that dictates my rebellion. Justice is just too far from reality. Simply asking that my Autistic children’s rights to equality and dignity be honored, makes me an activist.

That disparity, those rights withheld are what put the radical in Autistic love. Imagine giving what has only been denied of you, or, accepting yourself while the world is afraid of who you are. What we offer the disabled is less than they deserve. What we take away is shameful. Refusing to respect Autistics as competent and worthy human beings is our indecency. Each action taken by them to oppose this repression is an act of love. Love for themselves, for their people, and love for those of us so far far behind. Radical love. Get some. I write on.

The preceding essay was written for the annual Autism Positivity Flashblog. The theme 2015 is Acceptance, Love and Self Care. Join the celebration with positive perspectives of Autism on Facebook, Pinterest, Tumblr, & Twitter!

Original post at: http://raisingrebelsouls.blogspot.ca/2015/05/radical-acceptance-and-love.html

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Announcing #AutismPositivity2015

Announcing The Fourth Annual Autism Positivity Flashblog

May 15 th, 2015
15-05-15

April 2015 has been a busy month. There are so many people creating new projects and participating in posAutive events, expressing or amplifying the important perspectives of Autistic people, and celebrating Autistic pride and culture. The #WalkinRed15 event now also extended to May 15th  is a wonderful example of this and is a meaningful actionAutismPositivity2015button.jpg for Autism Acceptance Month!

As fantastic as all of these events are, we understand the potential overwhelm of the demands during this time of year, and how the pressures and stresses of participating in many important Autism Acceptance events can be a drain upon resources.

Frankly – we were feeling it too… and were low on spoons… and so in consideration of this our team has shifted the date.

We think this – in itself – is a lovely metaphor that embodies self-care and acceptance and self-understanding and accommodation in all the best ways… for many of us…

Sometimes we can’t do all the things…

Sometimes this is beyond our control…

But in this instance – and with this event – we can totally break the time-space continuum and create the additional time so many of us need.

We can make an accommodation to suit the needs of our planning and moderation team – and we fully anticipate that this will suit others as well.

So this year the theme is:
“Acceptance, Love and Self-care: #AutismPositivity2015″

AutismPositivity2015button.jpgWe want to know what you are celebrating about yourself, your Autistic family, friend or loved one or what you want to celebrate about Autistic community – and we think it is empowering to share the posAutive ways that we respectfully honour limits and pay attention to self-care for ourselves and for our friends and loved ones.

Let’s start a “tsunami” of positivity to honor Autistic pride, acceptance and love!

Join us in celebrating Autism Acceptance and we will once again flood Google with positive messages about Autism. 

We will have more information detailing how to submit and grab the button over the next few days… so be sure to check back 🙂

~

For the last three years, hundreds of bloggers have come together in a show of support and solidarity in response to negative stigma. The posts that have flooded in from all over the world have been a beautiful example of the power of strength in numbers. With so much negativity still surrounding Autism and the misinformation and misconceptions that continue to abound, we this year again invite you to participate in an intentional celebration of posAutivity and Acceptance within our diverse communities.

We welcome all of you, anyone who is Autistic, anyone who has an Autistic person in their life, and those who blog about autism to create a message of support, wisdom, hope, and pride to this year’s flashblog by posting to:

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1NCp1QzzX4jtKP2c-mv6hI0qqOHtaXYV_gzukBkgdAP4/viewform#start=embed

To participate:

1. Publish your post on May 15th in the following title format: “[Your Blog] Acceptance. Love, and Self-care: #AutismPositivity2015″

2. Share your post on Twitter, Facebook, and any other social media site using the hashtag #AutismPositivity2015

3. Add your link to the Autism Positivity website (submit here or above) and grab the badge from the page tab above.

4. Share/reblog this message to your blog, page, etc.

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If you have any questions, please contact us at autismpositivity@gmail.com

We can also be found on:

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/ThinkingAboutPerspectivesAutismPositivity

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/positivityautie/autism-positivity-2012/

Tumblrhttp://autismpositivity.tumblr.com/

Twitter@PositivityAutie

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