I consider myself very lucky today. I have read a lot about autism from the perspective of the parent, the teacher, the doctor, etc…but today I want to introduce you to Eric. A young man who recently graduated high school and entered the work force.
My Challenge: Autism
My name is Eric and my challenge is having autism. Sometimes I have a hard time coming up with the words to say what I am feeling. Sometimes I think people are acting a certain way for a certain reason and my mom and dad tell me that it is probably not for that reason.
I graduated from high school in May of 2013 and I did a lot of volunteer work. I finally got a paying job last month and now I work as a dishwasher three nights a week. I really like that I’m finally getting paid. I am looking forward to my checkbook balance going up. One day I would like to own my own car instead of driving one that my mom and dad own.
I like being able to drive myself and get around. I’ve been driving for two years now and I haven’t had an accident. I am a very good driver.
My favorite things to do are golf, bowling, watching movies, hanging out with my cat, working puzzles, building models and making things. I created this marionette puppet out of pipe cleaners.
I thought it was pretty cool and brought it to school to show off.
I need people to be willing to explain things to me different ways so I can understand, but then I am just as capable as any other teenager to do jobs. I like being useful at home and at work.
It is a challenge to have autism and sometimes I wish I didn’t have it but I am learning to live with it.
Wow. Eric. Just. Wow. Thank you for being so cool and honest about living with Autism. How it makes you, well, you but it also changes how the world perceives you. Here’s the thing, though. Almost every one of us knows some one with Autism. They are learning next to you in school but then they grow up. Just like you. They get jobs, they have a fulfilling life. A person with autism has just as much impact on the world as one who doesn’t, thank you Eric for showing that. And good luck on your new job!
To find more information about Autism, please visit The Organization for Autism Research.
What's your challenge is a series that was inspired by a program I created at Abby's school. I am amazed at how honest and hopeful the challenges have been. Thank you to all who have contributed. To submit your challenge, please e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org