Monday, March 3, 2008

One


Asperger Square 8 is one year old today. I'd like to say how much I appreciate everyone who has visited here, especially those of you who leave a comment once in awhile. I have met some great people through this blog and some have even become good friends. Writing a blog has changed my life in some ways I couldn't have predicted. I felt safely anonymous starting out with only my first name to identify me and a handful of incidental readers. I hadn't predicted the ways blogging might affect my relationships with present and future colleagues, friends and family. It was something I had to figure out as I went along, and which still requires almost daily consideration.
One difference this writing has made is that the people around me now have a way of knowing what I think. I have a way of telling them, without writing individual letters or emails every time I've failed to get my point across. This is different from the way my life used to be, not in a bad way. It's almost as if I've become, for the first time, visible, authentic.
But these people are not the ones who enter the discussions here. The conversations with other autistic people and family members of autistics, here and at your own blogs, these are what keep me coming back to this, when there is so much other work to be done. So I thank you. Thank you for listening.

28 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing!!

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  2. Happy Birthday! I am so, so glad you are here! (Even though I don't comment much. I long ago made this one of my RSS feeds, so I can be sure to read every post.)

    Reading what you've written has helped me (and by extension, my son) immensely. He talks a lot, always has, but sometimes he prefers other ways of communicating -- maybe pointing, looking (putting face very close to the thing he wants, a sort of zeroing-in like a zoom lens on a camera might do), pantomime -- or maybe indirect speech, like riddles or "multiple choice." I sometimes begin to get impatient with this (you know, "can't you just say the thing, spit it out?") until I remember to ask myself, "Why is my way right and his way wrong? Anyway, it's his own thought he's wanting to communicate. Let him choose his own method. Sheesh, get over yourself."

    Reading stuff you've written has helped me so much to remind myself not to just "put up with" his own ways of communicating (or not), but to love them. He is one funny, clever, neat-o cool kid. If only I just let him be, and marvel, and share as much as he wants me to.

    OK, anyway, happy birthday! Thanks for being here.

    Marie Stamer

    P.S. We're grooving lately to the new CD/DVD release by our beloved band, They Might Be Giants -- "Here Come the 123's." Awesome, awesome, awesome. Highly recommended.

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  3. Happy Birthday! I started blogging right around the same time you did and at the same time was looking for blogs on autism. You were one of the first I found. And I've been here ever since.

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  4. Happy bloggiversary, Bev! It's been a pleasure to read you. You've done a lot in just one year.

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  5. Happy Blirthday bev / Asperger Square 8! Please keep those cool graphics, and important points coming.

    -Do'C

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  6. Happy 1st birthday!
    I am happy to hear that your blog has had a positive affect on your life.
    Your insights have also had an effect on ours.
    Thank you.

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  7. Happy Birthday! It's amazing how using technology to connect with people can be so powerful. Your blog has helped me communicate better with my daughter, so thank you thank you thank you! :)

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  8. Happy Birthday, Bev! A wonderful milestone.

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  9. Now I have a mental image of Squawkers saying "Happy birthday! Happy birthday!"

    Hope you're having a good blogiversary!

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  10. Happy Birthday!

    I'm so grateful to have found you.

    karen in ca

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  11. I've read every single post on this blog and I want to thank YOU. I am a non-autistic disabled person and what you have written has helped me more than I can express.

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  12. Happy blogiversary, Bev and Squawkers!

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  13. Thanks to you too, Bev! You run an awesome site here. So many good things to say about it, but unfortunately my brain will not put them into a list at the moment. I think everyone who visits knows what they are anyway. I hope that you do too :)

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  14. Happy Happy Birthday! Thank you very much for your words & pictures here. Now make a wish; your macaw is on fire.

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  15. Wow! Mom would be so happy to see how many kids came to my party! And Squawkers does love being mentioned in the comments. I often have to remind him that I've had this blog longer than he's been with me. Looking into a behavior plan for his "attention seeking."
    Squawk! Thanks, everyone!

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  16. Great cake! Happy Anniversary!

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  17. *sings*

    "...and ma-ny moooore!"

    *throws confetti*

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  18. Well done Bev. This blog is the best. I love to read what you write here, and your graphics are fantastic.

    Pat Squawkers for me so he doesn't feel left out.

    Have you thought about therapy to deal with his 'behaviours'? ;-)

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  19. I think the best way to deal with squawkers' "behaviours" would be a slice of birthday cake. :)

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  20. Happy Birthday Bev from Wrong Planet!

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  21. There was a time, not long ago, when I felt a resentment that my dreams had somehow been betrayed by my son. I was not a happy person and, in a very short period of time, my sunny, charming little boy lost sight of his own happiness.

    When I talk about what it was that drew me out of my, now incomprehensible, despair, I point to three things: the boy wonder himself, of course; 'Don't Mourn for Us'; and this website.

    All the good things that followed (the lessons learnt on the NAS' Early Birds course, the quite brilliant schooling we fought for and got, the comprehension of friends and family, the reemergence of Jake from my shadow) were all built on the insight delivered by your funny, forthright and wise words.

    Thank you.

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  22. Happy blog-birthday, Bev!
    Joe mentioned Jim Sinclair's essay "Don't Mourn For Us". It was a formative influence on our family's response to autism as well.
    If you can get to western Pennsylvania the last week of June, you might be interested in attending Autreat 2008. Autreat is the annual conference/retreat of Autism Network International, the autistic self-advocacy organization Jim co-founded back in 1992. More info at http://www.ani.ac -- including a link to a Yahoogroup for getting questions answered about Autreat, and about how to get there.

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  23. Joe, thank you. I can think of many, many places I'd like to plaster your comment.

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  24. Happy birthday! I, too, am a subscriber so I don't make it here often enough to comment but I never miss a post! Congrats on keeping up such a great blog all year-It's not easy I know!

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