Written by: Eboni Nash
Focus on the able, not the label. – unknown
Autism is beautiful. It is an exciting yet radiant pulse of life rushing through the veins of those lucky enough to have it. Yes, I said lucky. Lucky to see the world through fresh and curious eyes. Lucky to not only have but to use more than 5 senses. To be able to recognize themselves as mere flesh to this existence rather than the center of this entire world.
Ciara is autistic. She has a heart that works as her hand; feeling her way through situations, catching the joy that is too minuscule for average, overworked brains to pick up. Her eyes work as her ears as they take in the fast-paced life in front of her. Fast movements sometimes make for a tension in her stomach. Just as clutter on a movie screen agitates viewers, large crowds cause Ciara tension. Ciara loves music. Not the modern rap or hip-hop often played on the radio. No, Ciara enjoys the fine art. She will listen to a cover over and over again until she can uniquely mimic each and every instrument in that composition. Like an imaginary staircase, Ciara motions her fingers in a way to climb the scales. She does not dance, she lets the music flow through her body. A pound of the drum and a thrust of her stomach, Ciara expresses her enjoyment in different ways.
Although Ciara craves to meet other people, her communication skills are not as vocal as others hope for. A thousand thoughts are racing through her mind; all too fast to respond and continue to do so again. I can assure you she enjoys your company. Give Ciara a chance and she will tell you in her own way. Whether that be a physical affirmation – a smile or hug- or by sharing with you her passions, Ciara networks in her own way.
Autism has a base word of ‘auto’; other known as ‘self’. We add ‘ism’ and the word quickly transforms into a movement or practice. Autism: the practice or movement of one’s self. As a society that needs more than a simple explanation, we transformed autism into a complex niche in society. In fact, it is often deemed as negative. People are scared of things they do not understand. To understand, we must first accept that there is no ‘right’ way to be human. You were born into this life as a gift, not a punishment. Take your gift, share it with others, and experience the diverse mixing bowl of human qualities.
It is the smile that can be felt through the passing car window. It is the character that breaks out of the constricting label. It is the patience, strength, and determination from a willing and curious soul. It is the love that is not often felt or experienced. It is sometimes silent while at others loud. It is not negative nor ‘special’. It is a facet to society. Autism is beautiful.
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