Can you believe it is already April?!? Time is flying by so quickly and I haven’t blogged In a while since I have considered not doing it anymore altogether…
But, seriously…April is also a big month because it is Autism Acceptance Month. In recent years, it was known as Autism Awareness Month; however, many things have changed in the autism community and the world as a whole as to how autism is viewed and perceived. Many organizations had sought (and sadly some still seek) a cure for autism seeing it as a disease or an epidemic. This resulted in Autism Awareness Month.
Now, it is being referred to as “Autism Acceptance Month.” Why the change, you ask? In connection with my mantra “Know Yourself. Love Yourself. Be Yourself.”, being aware that you have autism (a part of self-awareness) or knowing that someone else has autism (or any other disability, condition, etc. for that matter) is part of “Know Yourself” which is only the first step to better wisdom and a better life. In addition, you may know you have autism or that someone else has autism…but do you accept that about yourself or another person? Do you still show unconditional love to yourself and others regardless of what diagnosis has been given? Unfortunately, there are still some that do not…
Self-acceptance is addressed in the second part of my mantra: “Love Yourself.” Realizing that you are worthy and capable of love, warts and all, is key to living a happy and successful life. If you have difficulty accepting your diagnosis and/or your situation as a whole and you are waiting for others to love and accept you before you can accept yourself, you could be waiting for a very long time. Once you love yourself, others will love you in return. Just like The Ripple Effect with one small pebble creating outward movement in the water. Waiting for others to love you is like expecting those ripples to turn inward and that goes against the laws of nature and attraction. The world is too big to change for one person…one person must change the world. That said, be that pebble and create the outward ripples…for, it starts with YOU!
Here’s my pebble/Ripple moment. Looking ahead, with awareness and acceptance now in the picture, I would like to one day see something along the lines of “Autism Action Month.” This keeps the ‘A’ words coming and has to do with the third and final part of my mantra: “Be Yourself.” While words carry a lot of meaning, actions speak louder than words…and we are what we DO. That said, in future months/years, I would like to see people with autism and anyone that may be affected by autism take action, whether it be big or small, with one person or a group, temporary or ongoing, BE the change you want to see in your life as Gandhi said. While people with and without autism may fear or not welcome change at first, it is being the change that allows us to become our BEST SELF! Let us all evolve from being ourselves to becoming our best selves!
Thank you for taking the time to read this blog and may you Know Yourself, Love Yourself, Be Yourself.