‘Aut’ in the World

Charlie at the end of walk #4
Wednesday was 5 walks, 3 longish (but not as long as yesterday's) car rides, and 1 bike ride. By mid-afternoon it was sunny and getting warmer.

Charlie spent a lot of time standing around in our (small) front yard and just looking. At the passing cars and the passersby, some with strollers and a child or two in tow, some with dogs. (A black one led to Charlie running inside our house and locking the front door after him, then raising the shade on the front window to peer out and see if the coast was clear.)

As to why I think of him standing watch (and standing guard?) in our front yard as a little act of autism advocacy, of being "aut," is this post on Care2.com, 'Aut' With Our Autistic Son. I guess it's my contributionto Autism Awareness Month, along with this post about us being, yes, the weird ones.

I suspect people already think of our house as "that house" or "the house with the boy with." Fine, fine. It was the perfect conditions for being outside, not too cold and pleasantly mild. 

Just what you want for being aut.

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Comments
9 Responses to “‘Aut’ in the World”
  1. emma says:

    We were out and about today too, Dimitri added more worry beads to his collection from a guy on the metro (doing our bit for awareness and understanding??)
    Off to middle of nowhere for Easter (no internet) hope you all have a good Easter!!

  2. Leila says:

    Aut in the world – what a great message for autism awareness day. Don’t count on me wearing blue, but I’ll be surely spreading awareness where I can.

  3. Jill says:

    I like to think of Charlie hanging out in his front yard, checking things out.
    It’s no mystery that people fear the unknown and once they see that kids like Charlie are a lot less likely to run amok than the crowds of rowdy teens who prowl suburban shopping malls they may relax and be more accepting.
    Back in the day when I taught a class of autistic teenage boys we used to take them out on field trips a couple of times a week. Nobody said anything directly but we got lots of disapproving looks due to some of the kids’ proclivity for making unusual noises and odd body movements. It struck me as odd that people accepted teens who swore loudly and rough housed with each other (kids will be kids) but they couldn’t handle a few yelps and some stomping/flapping from my students.
    I guess it’s all a matter of what we’re used to and maybe when more people like Charlie are “aut and about” they’ll relax and accept them.

  4. Jill says:

    I like to think of Charlie hanging out in his front yard, checking things out.
    It’s no mystery that people fear the unknown and once they see that kids like Charlie are a lot less likely to run amok than the crowds of rowdy teens who prowl suburban shopping malls they may relax and be more accepting.
    Back in the day when I taught a class of autistic teenage boys we used to take them out on field trips a couple of times a week. Nobody said anything directly but we got lots of disapproving looks due to some of the kids’ proclivity for making unusual noises and odd body movements. It struck me as odd that people accepted teens who swore loudly and rough housed with each other (kids will be kids) but they couldn’t handle a few yelps and some stomping/flapping from my students.
    I guess it’s all a matter of what we’re used to and maybe when more people like Charlie are “aut and about” they’ll relax and accept them.

  5. autismvox says:

    Emma, I got Charlie new worry beads and he’s not interested (leaves them on the floor)!
    Jill, too true (especially as we’ve been observing the ‘behaviors’ of kids Charlie’s age, wandering around with nothing to do during Spring Break)….
    Leila, I wrote this elsewhere….I tend to wear blue anyways (not that light blue); considering what happened on the Empire State Building—
    http://www.nydailynews.com/ny_local/2010/04/01/2010-04-01_pals_shocked_by_his_empire_jump.html
    ‘m not so sure I’d want to light it up in blue. But I suspect they still will do it.

  6. autismvox says:

    Emma, I got Charlie new worry beads and he’s not interested (leaves them on the floor)!
    Jill, too true (especially as we’ve been observing the ‘behaviors’ of kids Charlie’s age, wandering around with nothing to do during Spring Break)….
    Leila, I wrote this elsewhere….I tend to wear blue anyways (not that light blue); considering what happened on the Empire State Building—
    http://www.nydailynews.com/ny_local/2010/04/01/2010-04-01_pals_shocked_by_his_empire_jump.html
    ‘m not so sure I’d want to light it up in blue. But I suspect they still will do it.

  7. Regina says:

    “It struck me as odd that people accepted teens who swore loudly and rough housed with each other (kids will be kids) but they couldn’t handle a few yelps and some stomping/flapping from my students.”
    Kind of puts it in perspective, although many of the people we encounter seem to “get it” and are actually pretty helpful in giving our daughter an extra chance to say what she wants and practice community skills, and even aren’t blown away by the occasional hand flap or humming. And even if it’s not most or all the time, I appreciate the help from those that do. But then, she’s obviously a girl and I imagine that on top of everything else people have different preconceptions based on gender.
    Here’s an observation – given the prevalence – and our state is well above the national average (although we also have a broadened diagnostic scale to match), I would expect to encounter many children/teens with similarities, but with the exception of occasions when the nearby Jr. HS is taking the intensive skills classroom out on field trips, I hardly ever see anyone around the neighborhood, stores, on our weekend errand runs. No big statement, and not a scientific survey which probably depends on the circles we run in as much as anything else – just an observation. I really hadn’t thought about it for awhile.

  8. chrisd says:

    Hi Kristina.
    I like to think that Charlie is checking things out, being brave. He is blessed to be able to be safely outside and to have a safe place to run home to.
    You and your husband are doing a wonderful job!

  9. Regina says:

    When I was a teen, I was a big UN fan – maybe this is news that everyone knows, but it’s not entirely clear to me that people know that April 2 was the occasion designated by the UN…anyway, for me the statements by the Secretary General and the related convention (finally signed by the U.S./President Obama in 2009) has more significance than whether a building is lit up.
    Autism Awareness Day – April 2, 2010
    United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon states support for World Autism Awareness Day on April 2, 2010



    United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Entered into force on 3 May 2008.
    http://www.un.org/disabilities/default.asp?navid=13&pid=150

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