Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Guest Post on World Autism Day: Deegan

I am so excited to be sharing today's post in honor of World Autism Day! Julianna has been fortunate to grow up with some amazing kids, one of which you will learn from today. She went to preschool with this fantastic little boy, so we have seen him grow up into the great kid he is now. What I love about Deegan is that plays extremely well with my son Blake (especially Mario Kart), and he can always make my little guy Nathan smile. Read on to learn about Deegan, sharing his own perspective on living with autism! If you or anyone you know would like to post on this blog, email thespecialreds@hotmail.com.
My name is Angel and I am so lucky to be the mother of a child with autism.  Deegan was diagnosed with moderate autism when he was 2 ½ years old.  He is now 9 years old and attends a regular 4th grade class with no aide and no IEP!  He doesn’t remember standing off in a corner and not playing with anyone.  But he sure remembers lining up his toys and not knowing how else to play with them.  Long gone are the days when he couldn’t answer a question or know I had a name (mom).  And I definitely do not miss the breaking glass or poking people in the eyes days!  He has come such a long way and because he is so smart and able to communicate so well, he wants EVERYONE to know what it is like for people with autism and that just because they may act a certain way, they are not trying to be bad or disrespectful.  They are listening when you think they are not.  And they feel connections to you even when their bodies cannot communicate it.

Here are 8 things Deegan wants everyone to know about Autism, written by Deegan:
1.  I have a lot of energy and I need to move my body all of the time.

2. I always think that people (especially my family) can read my mind and know what I need. I  forget to ask for help when I need it.

3. Thinking makes my body move a lot because I feel weird.  Like when I think about what it would be like to have another body, I have to squeeze my hands or run to get the thoughts out.  I also squeeze my hands when I get excited.

4. Math is really easy for me.  It just makes sense.

5. It’s hard for me to look people in the eye when they talk to me because there are so many other interesting things to look at.

6. People with autism have the most love.  We feel more love in our hearts than other people.

7. It’s really hard for me to eat new foods because it smells gross.  It’s also hard to eat around other people because they are gross when they eat.

8.  I am super good at remembering things, especially if I see a picture of it.  I can remember almost every picture I see and so it is easier for me to learn with pictures than by listening.


  1. I talk about Deegan all the time. Just the progress he made in preschool alone. I always talk about how he would tell the furniture and toys goodbye, but teachers were not cool enough to say goodbye to. :) but by the end of preschool he had so many friendships and good relationships with the teachers. I miss the whole Young family!

  2. That was really neat to read and I learned a few things myself just by reading this that I didn't know about autism and I think Deegan is right kids with autism do have more love than most people happy autism awareness day :)