Matt’s Response to Suzanne Wright

Fishing With Daddy

Nothing like some one on one with a special little princess.

Autism in a box. Is that what people really believe can be accomplished?

Autism cannot fit into a box because there is more than fixing a perceived issued. Autism SHOULD NOT fit into a box. It’s so different, expansive and unique that we still don’t understand what it is. In addition to that, it’s limiting those with autism from being greater than the sum of their needs.

When I look at my daughter I don’t see Autism. I see one aspect of who she is on the surface. When I look at other children I’ve met on various levels of the Autism spectrum I see children, not the condition that people are using to define and limit them.

Each person with autism is unique and through their dealings with Autism they have developed a connection that allows them to experience life differently. Simple things we take for granted bring them joy and happiness. When they find that which they enjoy, it exudes pure innocense and wonder. They find hope in places that those of us who do not have autism could ever dream of seeing it. They open up the eyes of the people around them  to see the world differently, more brilliantly, more vibrantly, and more alive than we see it rushing through lives.

Yes, we live moment to moment in our house but as the saying goes “stopping to smell the roses leads to the appreciation of its beauty” whereas when you have a child with special considerations it’s very much the same. You learn to appreciate their differences.

Emelie’s autism is like a mirror. It has enabled us to reflect back on ourselves. I have found it to especially true in my case. It leads to seeing the world from an unexpected angle and viewing myself in that light. Once Em was diagnosed and we learned what we needed to do to relate to her, I learned how to relate differently to myself. I took time to understand myself. Before I used to rush through and fix things or try to resolve problems quickly and efficiantly which wasn’t necessarily a great thing as sometimes I missed the big picture. In the process, I’ve learned to pause and reflect. That can open answers to resolving issues more effectively than a blitzkrieg.

Emelie is living and thriving. Autism doesn’t hold her back. Understanding who she is has probably given her more life than those without autism. Emelie is an open book with autism. She understands who she is at the moment, where she has been and where she thinks she is going better than most people, including myself.

I am proud to be a parent of an autistic child. I’m not hiding or embarassed. I’m willing to share that joy with the world. I understand how some parents lose sight of the positives. I understand the frustration and exhaustion. Everyone’s experience is different but I think every parent/caregiver will agree on how much they love these children.

I love my daughter very much and wouldn’t change her for the world.



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