The Lion's Roar

Learning And Living With Autism

Kaitlyn Helsel, Staff Writer

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I have known about my brothers’ autism since I was about four years old. All I knew at the time, was that my brothers had something that made them different than everyone else. As I grew older I came to learn that autism is a disease in the brain that can impede judgment, communication, thought process, and more. Autism varies from person to person and is rated on what is called the spectrum.

Autism doesn’t just affect those who have it, it may also affect their parents and other siblings. My dad said that raising two autistic kids is, ” more challenging than raising other kids”, but he also feels that it, ” makes a person more tolerant and patient”.  My mom said that we celebrate my brothers’ milestones more because they are, ” so few and so little in between”. What she means by this is that, unlike me, my brothers may not get to do everything that a normal kid would.

However, just because they are limited, doesn’t mean that they can’t still try challenging things. For instance, my older brother, Christopher, learned how to do something that we never thought he would be able to do; he can ride a bike. He can not ride a two wheel bike, but my parents didn’t want him to continue to use training wheels, so we found him a three wheel bike. Now whenever he goes to ride it, he has a big smile on his face. One thing that my mom said that stood out about Chris was that, ” When he smiles and laughs, everyone can’t help but smile and laugh with him.” My younger brother, Adam, who is higher up on the spectrum, he can memorize facts about movies, commercials, anything really, within seconds of hearing it in a video. He enjoys sharing this information with us at the dinner table and sometimes on long car rides. My dad said that Adam has a great imagination and tends to be happy about everything.

Autism can be a challenge for those who have it and for those who live with it. However, my brothers’ disability doesn’t stop them from being themselves nor does it stop them from reaching new goals. With support from their peers and family members, I believe that there is nothing my brothers can’t do, even it means doing it in a different way.

 

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1 Comment

One Response to “Learning And Living With Autism”

  1. Emma Janney on April 28th, 2017 8:00 am

    This article is great, Caitlyn!! 🙂

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