I was a quiet child, daydreaming my way through my primary years. I remember talking to invisible beings. I did not know what they were, I simply enjoyed their company, thinking everyone had the exact same experiences as me. I could hear flowers, the wind and the moon chattering away. I could see everything moving, pulsating. I knew instinctively that everything was alive and had consciousness. This lasted until I was around 10 years old, where I became aware that nobody else close to me had the same experiences. I became sad and was deeply affected by bullying, whereas in the past (I wore national health glasses, special shoes and sucked my thumb!) I wasn't as I had all my unseen friends to play with. I shut all that down, instead immersing myself into the 3rd dimensional world, blimey! What a change in reality that was.
Eventually I went to college and studied early years education and development. I had definitely found my passion. I thrived in this environment becoming an early years professional which lead me into a variety of roles. Eventually having a stint as an early years lecturer in College.
In 2005 my son was born and I immersed myself into being a mum. Life changes when you become a parent and I was no exception. The difference was our son is autistic. No one else in my life had a child or family member who was autistic. Not much was known or spoken about it. Through almost 20 years in early years education, only once was autism mentioned as a possibility of diagnosis for a child I cared for. My knowledge of autism was about to escalate rapidly. As with most things in life, reality teaches you the truth and the flexibility is learnt through each experience. Being around real people teaches you to un-pigeon hole! I knew this from working with young children. In the years to follow, as a family, we immersed ourselves into autism. Meeting families, professionals and most importantly autistic people.
Among this were assessments, tests, questionnaires and suggestions, judgements. we felt pressured in having to make decisions for Jeorge with very few choices or professional support. Services were stretched and with any good intentions from professionals there was only so much they could offer us. Training courses and workshops were very negative, full of old stereotype scenarios and structures, what I was hearing did not match up to what we were experiencing.
I see myself as an advocate and a guardian for autism. Seeing the beauty instead of eradicating autism from existence, which in my opinion is impossible as it feels more to me like a part of human evolution. More-so, it is incredibly insulting to those of us who are autistic living within our communities in their own unique way. Fear drives such thoughts. Our aim at dazlious, along with the help and input from those who are autistic is to eradicate the fear and pigeon holing and instead spread acceptance of autism in all its many variants. We explore this in much more detail in workshops and articles and blogs I write.
In the last couple of years there has been a surge of non verbal autistic's writing books of their own using letter boards and voice activating aids. Autistic adults have Facebook groups, blogs and travel the countries they live in and overseas educating NT people of what they want from us as a society. This is a whole new wealth of truth, finally (academics, scientists, doctors, psychologists, parents etc) can become avid and loyal students to the autistic world, for what we thought we knew, we simply did not. Now with the kindness, patience, forgiveness and wisdom of those who are autistic they are teaching us the truth.
Their time has come to be heard. For so long autism has been misunderstood, suppressed, even institutionalised as madness and completely no use to humanity.
Meeting people of all ages on the spectrum I listened of their lives hearing things such as, children who have told me they teleport. A young boy I met creates water sculptures, yes! water sculptures..They are photographed and you can google them. I have seen the photos and met the young lad who so casually would create beauty right under our noses, yet were unable to 'see' it. I am suggesting that all autistic people have super sonic abilities but what I am learning is so many behaviours that are deemed as 'unacceptable, naughty, non compliant, no reason at all, are always with meaning and for a purpose. To really understand autism and be a positive support for those who are autistic, we need to listen to personal experiences and suggestions of how they need to be supported in this very non-autistic society.
My aim and passion is to create a support through workshops, forums and blogs for the individual with autism their families, parents and professionals. The pressures that can come at us are overwhelming at times. Empowering parents and carers and autistic children and adults to shine and be who they are is possible more than ever now. Autism is not a symbol or a label, assessments, doctors, medications ,diet sheets or ABA. We need strong autistic adults to educate the world. Accepting autism can integrate amongst the world positively, being seen as a community within its own right.
As you browse through this site I hope you can find something here that can help in some way. We are all on this journey some of us are at the beginning, some further along, however, I feel as a community we can support and guide each other. If we are open to learning the language of autism in a fun and freeing way, my hope is this will spread like wild fire across the world inspiring all.
Let us celebrate our differences creating a new language- bilingual in essence of neuro-diversity to create what I feel is the meaning of the word DAZLIOUS (watch the clip and you will know what I mean)