Friday, April 27, 2012

A Wonderful Month of Autism Awareness & So Much More

It's been a while since I've linked up with the fabulous Mrs. 4444.  And it's been such a whirl wind of a month, that I figured the best way to piece it all together is through Friday Fragments.

It's been a long winter.  The month of March has been the roughest I've had in a while.  But April, has been pretty fantastic and full of exciting opportunities! And I'm hoping (crossing fingers and toes) that it's a sign of better things to come.

The first week of April, AutismWonderland was ranked #10 on Babble's Top Autism Spectrum Blogs for Parents 2012!  And they wrote such a beautiful description of my blog - here's a snippet "Autism Wonderland is as informative a chronicle of the ASD experience as Lewis Carroll’s book was about where Alice went." I am so honored to be included on this list. 

I spent part of Spring Break in Miami at Hispanicize - a Media/Blog Event.  Truly such a life/mind changing experience for me.  In addition to speaking on a panel with other special needs blog writers, I had the opportunity to pitch my blog on SOiTV.  I'm not used to public speaking and was extremely nervous.  Johnny, the gentleman introducing me, spoke so quickly in Spanish.  And um...I don't speak/understand Spanish - so I look like a deer in the headlights.  The blogger with the most YouTube hits gets to be featured on SOiTV for a month. 

Last month the wonderful Ellen Seidman of Love That Max asked me - ME! - to contribute something to...wait for it... 
My post, The Milestones That Keep You Going When You Have a Kid with Autism, was published on Monday, April 23 and I've been squealing ever since.

Last week, I attended a reading in support of my friend Keisha - a beautiful Caribbean poet/writer.  While mingling, I met Brendan Costello.  Brendan is a contributor for The Largest Minority Radio Show and asked me to be a guest.  Also on the air was Savannah Logsdon Breakstone - a young autistic woman and Savannah just gave me a whole new perspective.  Below is the link to download an MP3 of the show:

And then last night, I was invited to speak at New York Cares.  The room was filled with Team Leaders and volunteers all eager to learn more about autism. Also speaking was:
  • Alicia, the Executive Director of GallopNYC.  A wonderful program that "provides therapeutic horseback riding to people in New York City, using interaction with horses to promote the growth of functional and mental abilities in a safe, supportive and fun manner."
  • Elly, a program coordinator for a new program at Birch Family Services - the New Frontier. The New Frontier focuses on pre-vocational and social learning activities for higher functioning young adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder.
  • Kevin, also with Birch Family Services, is the Autism/Residential coordinator with the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at Birch Family Services where he provides training, support and guidance to Birch residents and day habilitation programs.

Then this morning, I finally checked my personal email account.  After deleting all the SPAM, I opened up an email from the English Department of CCNY.  I won an award for a short story I submitted.  It reminded me that while I love writing this blog, I also love writing fiction.  It also reminded that even though I needed to take the semester off.  I need to get back and graduate.

I hope that all of these wonderful things are a sign that things are starting to look up.  I need a break.  And The Boy?  He needs a new school.  Cross your fingers that we find one and that the Board of Ed doesn't fight us too much.       

Play along! Don't know how?  
Check out Mrs. 4444
for more Friday Fragments.
Mommy's Idea

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AutismWonderland - written by Lisa Quinones-Fontanez - is a personal blog chronicling a NYC family's journey with autism, while also sharing local resources for children/families with special needs.