Movement Matters for All Girls

Ten-year-old Sadie from Birmingham, Alabama is your average fourth grader. She likes wearing pink, spending time with her friends and playing sports. Sadie also happens to have cerebral palsy and epilepsy. Unfortunately, for many girls like Sadie, the options to participate in inclusive after-school physical activity and sports programs are often limited. Girls in the United States are far less likely than boys to meet the recommended amount of daily physical activity, but the disparity […]

As Long As It’s Healthy.

by Amanda Buck I stared at the pregnancy test for a long time. I could hardly believe what I saw. In fact, I didn’t believe it, and took two more tests just to be sure. They all read “pregnant.” I’d been longing for a second child, agonizing over it for months. But we struggled with the decision, wondering if it was even right for us to try. For my husband and I, it wasn’t as […]

The purple band and the green chain #autism

by Jeannette Cripps It’s been a bit of a busy week for D, two hospital trips for me have impacted on the after school routines for her and the activities at school really step up a gear after the May half term, what with Proms week, Sports Day and end of term activities rapidly looming. In addition to the above, D has sporting opportunities coming up, these are great for team work and, in particular […]

The Blessing and The Burden

by Barbara Swoyer Several months ago, my son turned 22.  I felt grateful, lucky and blessed.  I also felt apprehensive and overwhelmed.  Like many other parents of children with special needs, it was a day that I dreaded, the day when my child would lose the entitlement of school and related services. Reaching this milestone meant that he was continuing to beat the odds against a progressive disease and the prognosis of a limited life […]

Renovating Our Home and Our Lives for Cerebral Palsy

by Jamie Sumner To renovate a home is to renovate a life. Until we began to carve out our home to make it accessible to our son with cerebral palsy, I did not know I could plan his path to freedom or how I would feel once he took it. The fact is, Charlie has outgrown this life we have built. The cerebral palsy that felt first like an anchor holding him back, now seems simply […]

SPECIAL BIKES FOR EXTRA SPECIAL PEOPLE

by Colleen Berlingieri May is National Bike Month and there is an ever-expanding diversity of events in communities nationwide & around the world. From fashion shows to group rides, local groups are finding unique ways to celebrate their diverse bike cultures and community pride. BIKE TO WORK DAY This year Bike to Work day was Friday May 18th and according to the League of American Bicyclists, most of the largest U.S. cities will participate. And […]

SPECIAL NEEDS PARENTING: AWARENESS OF REALITY AND COMMITMENT

One of the most common things people say to me is, “I don’t know how you do it. I could never be a special needs parent. There is a reason Maya was given to you and not me.” Well, I have news for all of those people. I have no super powers or special training. I don’t believe special kids are given to special people. It’s random. Nothing in my life before February 9, 2016 […]

Autism in the 1990s

By Maxine Rosaler When the psychologist who was testing our son for developmental disabilities said that his problems were “neurological” and had not been caused by “bad parenting,” as my husband and I had been led to believe by the therapist we had been seeing, autism had not yet achieved its current penetration into the American mind. People were not yet excusing minor social errors by explaining, casually, “I’m a little autistic”; nor was everyone […]

The Traps and Gaps of Special Needs Parenting

by Colleen Berlingieri Recently, my husband had surgery for prostate cancer. Not to worry. All is well and the procedure was a success. However, the process was grueling. It was a long s-l-o-w recovery filled with pain, exhaustion and pills – and that was just me – he had a hard time too! During the long weeks of his recovery we watched a lot of TV. One afternoon a commercial for a cancer drug came on. […]

KAYAKING WITH KIDS

by Ann Allen Believe me, my young friend, there is nothing- absolutely nothing- half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats. -Kenneth Grahame  Does your child love water? Rhythm? Movement? How about the sounds of nature? I don’t know about you, but I can finally see signs of spring cropping up around me. No, our yard isn’t lined with brightly colored tulips. There aren’t blossoms on our apple trees. It is still […]