Paradise Church from the Road
Acceptance and Awareness, Achievements, Dignity & Respect, Equality, Independence

Giving Myself Some Grace

I am often told by those that support me in my journey to “give myself some grace.” For the longest time I continually bush it off mostly because I often think that I am no different when going through my journey.

Laurel Highlands Hiking Trail Bridge
Acceptance and Awareness, Dignity & Respect, Healthy Lifestyle, Independence, Weight Loss, Wellness Wedbesday

Wellness Wednesday: Dealing With Body Image and Self-Worth

Recently, I have been dealing with accepting my body image and being proud of it. It can be hard for a person of my size to be proud of my body when I know it needs a lot of work that is truly my responsibility to work to make improvements to it. However, being such, it can be difficult to accept compliments from others on my appearance because I do not believe that I am worthy of it.

Dunbar Township Elementary Newspaper Photo 1968

Reflections: What I Didn’t Know Then

Recently, my parents were cleaning their house and brought to me some of my possessions. Some of these were some elementary school yearbooks that I had. Taking a look into one of them brought to light some discoveries about things that happened at the time, both good and bad that made me realize that I have been destined to be on the journey that I am on.

Driver's License Center
Achievements, Adulting, Independence

Adulting: Only Held Back By Fear

I continue to live the way I live in life because what I really want in life is held up by a huge wall of fear. Fear of what? Something not going the way it is supposed to be? Fear I cannot do it? Fear of doing something that you’ve never done or leaving the only thing you've known all your life? It’s all fearful. I won’t lie.

Acceptance and Awareness, Dignity & Respect, Employment, Healthy Lifestyle, Holistic Health, Independence, Open Topic

What Feelings are Typical?

Being autistic provides a skewed frame of mind. What may seem like something that is only experienced by the autistic mind may not be understood that what is being felt by an autistic person is also felt by neurotypicals as well.

Christian Church Wall Panroama
Achievements, Wellness Wedbesday

Wellness Wednesday: Keeping The Push

The last week has been very fruitful on the wellness front. With a combination of my internal fear of COVID diminishing along with spring coming in the last week, factors have provided for being not only more active physically, but more involved in my community as well.

Laurel Highlands Hiking Trail Bridge
Acceptance and Awareness, Dignity & Respect, Equality, Reflections

Reflections: Why All Voices Are Important in Advocacy.

In recent years, there has been much divide between self-advocates and family members of autistics about the advocating for all autistics. Sometimes when either side is advocating for things that they are passionate about, it must be understood that it is their experience and that everyone experiences things differently as autism is indeed a spectrum disorder.

Looking Up at Laurel Hill Beach House October 2014
Acceptance and Awareness, Adulting, Independence

Adulting: Autism and Anger

Recently, somebody asked me, does autism cause anger? I seriously had to choose my words wisely because while autism is a neurological condition, certain environmental factors can be the cause of an autistic person experiencing anger if they do not have the tools in their toolbox to properly manage their emotions at that moment.

Acceptance and Awareness, Achievements, Autism Acceptance Month

I Helped Proclaim Autism Awareness Month

Many times people experiencing challenges similar to me often relate the courthouse as a place where bad things happen for them. But this past week, it was a good time. I had the pleasure of standing at the commissioner’s meeting for the reading of the proclamation claiming April as Autism Awareness Month in my county. 

Universal Studios
Autism News

Universal Studios Becomes More Sensory Friendly

by Shaun Heasley, via Disability Scoop | March 18, 2022 The entrance to Universal Studios in Orlando, Fla. (James Vallee/Dreamstime/TNS) The Florida theme park scene is getting a new accommodation for people with disabilities. Universal Studios Florida said this week that it has opened a quiet room. The space is intended to “further assist our guests… Continue reading Universal Studios Becomes More Sensory Friendly

Murray Run March 2022
Acceptance and Awareness, Dignity & Respect, Independence

Community Stigma

Being neurodiverse and experiencing multiple mental health challenges can present problems when you are out in a world that just isn’t made for us. Although it is often said that being autistic has no look, sometimes when you face challenges that are presented when you are out in the community or because you have special needs, many times judgment is passed and you can feel it  However, you have to be the better one in the situation and be kind because if you are not, it can backfire quickly.

Kizik Cardio Shoes
Product Reviews

Product Review: Kizik Hands-Free Shoes

For many autists, myself included, we often struggle with shoes. What may seem simple to neurotypicals for the neurodiverse can be a complicated process because of many motions and the need to process many manuvers that require the use of our motor skills, which we may have difficult with. Shoes from Kizik eliminate many struggles with putting on, shoes, looking presentable and feeling comfortable.

Christmas Eve 2022 Benches
Acceptance and Awareness, Healthy Lifestyle, Independence, Wellness Wedbesday

Wellness Wednesday: Goal-Bound

Getting healthy and losing weight can be a struggle. Getting started is the hardest thing about taking initiative to make a change to do something about it. It isn’t the easiest or most wanted thing to do, but knowing that it will improve yourself and provide a sense of accomplishment is worth everything in the end.

Laurel Run at the Gun Club
Acceptance and Awareness, Dignity & Respect, Healthy Lifestyle, Independence, Reflections

Reflections: Realizing Capacity

As part of experience, a recent journey of self-discovery and acceptance has made me realize the fact that I can only have the physical and mental capability to only withstand so much. I have begun to accept the fact that at times we cannot do what we intend or want to do and while being independent comes with a sense of responsibility, we must learn to properly balance our lives in order to maintain optimum wellness both mentally and physically.

West Yough Boardwalk March 2022
Adulting, Independence

Adulting: Sense of Freedom

Being independent comes with a sense of freedom, From how we choose to decorate, buy, wear, our routines, our interactions, our involvement and so much more. What also comes with freedom is an equal amount of responsibility to carry out that freedom. In order to maintain optimum independence, both must be maintained sensibly.


Movie Starring Actor With Autism Gets Nationwide Release

by Shaun Heasley, via Disability Scoop | March 11, 2022 Major Dodson, who has autism, stars in the new movie "Tyson's Run." (Collide Distribution) Autism is at the center of a new movie that’s opening in theaters across the country. “Tyson’s Run,” which stars an actor with autism, will be on over 400 screens starting Friday.… Continue reading Movie Starring Actor With Autism Gets Nationwide Release

Achievements, Employment, Independence

12-Year Work Anniversary

Today has been 12 years since I walked into the office of my employer. All I knew at that time is that I had a job and who my direct supervisor was. I had no idea what the job exactly involved or what I was exactly doing. What I did know was that it was an opportunity that has evolved into being more educated about mental health and advocacy. It is a job that even to this day I still love .

West Yough Bride March 2022
Healthy Lifestyle, Independence, Wellness Wedbesday

Wellness Wednesday: Slow Progress Is Best

The past week in the Wellness realm has been more focused on making small changes and realizing that those matter than the number on the scale. While seeing numbers on the scale drop, it is equally as important to begin to make small changes so that we are not hit hard on in the future.