TJ loves elevators. I think he does not have autism, but he's family. My friend Jennifer shared with me this video about TJ's visit to the Hampton Inn in Ashville, North Carolina, and I think you'll enjoy his enthusiam and the warm welcome he was given.
To take a phrase from the video, TJ makes my heart smile.
I've been a little overwhelmed today, so I decided it would be a good day to look at some of my special interests. I created a Pinterest board documenting one of my first obsessions: Fisher Price Little People.
How I loved them! I called them Babies. I had dozens of them. I chewed them to death. They were the actors in the epics I directed as a preschooler. We found them buried in the yard for decades.
They ruined the Little People when they started making them be specific characters, like Mr. Hooper, and when they started making them out of plastic.
We're normal, but we're normal in a different way to other kids
Dancer James Hobley, who was a finalist on Britain's Got Talent, talks about living with autism in this moving and beautiful series of videos from ChildLine. He talks about about dealing with bullying, building confidence, and how dancing has improved all areas of his life. We get to watch him dancing, growing up, and living his life.
Nick Faulds, who has Asperger's syndrome, was selected as captain by his high school basketball team for a second year:
“I am very proud of myself for working hard, and being team captain puts more responsibility on my shoulders, which is nice,” said Nick. “Kids use to think I was just stupid, but basketball has been a very important part of my life. Basketball has also kept me away from drinking and drugs so much I can’t even tell you. While others choose that, I know that if I want to play basketball, I need to stay away from drinking and drugs.”
Coach Todd Isaman explains that Nick had a rough start on the team:
“At first I was a little nervous because when he started playing he would get so down on himself. He would come to tears after a game and he beat himself up constantly. It was to the point where I was unsure if he could handle the ups and downs of a season. As I got closer to Nick, I started to understand how he functions. He sees things in black and white. I kind of babied him at first to make sure he was all right, but then realized that was not helping him. We used basketball as a tool. We pretty much told him that if he didn’t stop getting so down on himself and having a poor attitude that he couldn’t play basketball anymore. It was pretty much tough love.’”
Isaman is impressed with Nick's attitude now:
“There are many things I admire and respect about Nick,” Isaman said. “To me the biggest thing is that Nick has never used Autism as an excuse. Instead, he used it as motivation.”
Aspie John Toomey on The Price Is Right
What if The Price Is Right was one of your special interests? And you actually got to be on it and meet Bob Barker?
John Toomey got to do that a few years ago. He's a cool young guy with Asperger's syndrome who has recently started his own YouTube channel.
I think think this one will make you smile.