To the Children on the Autism Spectrum I Work With Every Day


As a speech language pathologist, I have the privilege to work with young children on the autism spectrum every day. Recently, I was asked by a colleague to write something reflecting my experience with these amazing little ones, and as April is Autism Awareness Month, I felt moved to share it beyond the walls of our school.

I see you.

I see that you came to school today.

I see your favorite striped shirt and your not-so-favorite lace-up sneakers.

I see that you showed a friend your brand new backpack.

I see you found your favorite swing on the far side on the playground.​

I see you’re feeling like you’d rather stay outside.

I see you playing happily with the fastest engine from your train set.

I see you’d prefer I not play with you right now.

I see that you’re excited to listen to your favorite song.

I see that today, you don’t feel like talking in a “big” voice.

I see a smile a mile-wide, while you cruise down the slide.

I see that today, you don’t want to color with crayons.

I see you laughing hard when we do a silly dance.

I see that you don’t feel like using your words today.

I see a stack of blocks so tall you had to reach way up on your tiptoes to finish it.

I see you feeling like going to the gym is going to be too much for you right now.

I see a child who is perfectly and uniquely made, who will struggle and fall short and succeed and excel.

I see a child who is just right.

I see You.
The Mighty is asking the following: How would you describe your disability, disease or mental illness to a child? If you’ve done this before, tell us about that moment and the child’s reaction. If you’d like to participate, please send a blog post to [email protected] Please include a photo for the piece, a photo of yourself and 1-2 sentence bio. Check out our Submit a Story page for more about our submission guidelines.

Related to Autism Spectrum Disorder

PBS Kids Show ‘Dinosaur Train’ Puts Spotlight on Autism Acceptance

The hit PBS Kids show “Dinosaur Train,” produced by The Jim Henson Company, is airing back-to-back episodes on April 6 and 7 to promote autism awareness, according to the network. PBS teamed up with The Center of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to help families learn more about autism and to familiarize them with the CDC’s [...]

Why I Can’t Support Autism Awareness Month as an Autistic Person

Shocking, I know. For many families with autistic children, or autistic people ourselves, this time of year is filled with families being excited for Autism Awareness Day/Month. Which is great. Good for them. If it makes more people hear about autism then I will agree that it is not a bad thing. But that does [...]

Court Takes Action Against Rec Center That Banned Autistic Boy From Locker Room

After one mother’s 5-year-old son on the autism spectrum was banned from the women’s locker room at the Adams Butzel Recreation Center in Detroit, she sought help from the U.S. Attorneys office. U.S. Attorney Barbara McQuade confirmed to the Detroit Free Press on Monday that the rec center has now modified its rules, which prohibited children older [...]

Virtual Google Tour Helps Autistic Kids Check Out Hospital Before They Visit

The Birmingham Children’s Hospital in Birmingham, England, recently teamed up with Google and Autism West Midlands to create an extensive virtual tour for patients with autism and their families. It’s just like Google street view — but with a glimpse inside every door and room of the hospital. “We know that children with autism really struggle [...]