Usually on Twitter, the trending topics all seem, well, a little silly. Especially anything dealing with this kid called Justin Bieber. Mostly, trending topics come attached with what’s called a hashtag (#thisiscalledahashtag).
(By the way, if you are not on Twitter, it’s actually quite fun. Like a huge cocktail party with lots of interesting topics flying around. Oh and spam. Lots of spam. Yum.)
But this past week, a wonderful thing happened. Thanks to two wonderful women…a new hasthtag #youmightbeanautismparentif. Much in the realm of good ole Jeff Foxworthy “Redneck-isms” (of which I do claim to be partially Redneck) – Tweeps started posting some of their common struggles and victories.
Some were quite profound. And it shows just how expansive the spectrum is – and how so people exhibit so many different yet similar characteristics. Verbal, nonverbal, flappy, meltdowny, the good, bad, and fugly – people were tweeting everything. It was cathartic and a relief to read many of this lovely people’s tweets.
Mine of course were not as awesome. I would tweet a couple, then get distracted and stop for a while, then come back to check on it. Obviously many were better at this than me. (That’s okay, that’s how I feel about my blog postings too).
Here were a few of mine:
#youmightbeanautismparentif you get upset that when told your child just “couldn’t” have autism, since he/she doesn’t “look” autistic #youmightbeanautismparentif you have read what others tweeted and nodded in agreement… #youmightbeanautismparentif someone starts talking about an IEP for Part B with ECSE for their kid w/ ASD and you know what that means. #youmightbeanautismparentif you really don’t mind watching “A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving”…after Thanksgiving…b/c it makes him happy. (We say this three days later…until Charlie Brown Christmas comes on)
#Youmightbeanautismparentif you’ve gained a whole bunch of new followers based on your #Youmightbeanautismparentif hashtag. 😉 (This is true; I gained quite a few new followers. If you are reading this – HIIIIIII)
Some of my favorites:
#youknowyouranautismparentif you sometimes stay home because it’s just easier. #youmightbeanautismparentif you have forbidden xmas gifts that make noises, sounds, words or songs that can be repeated indefinitely. #youmightbeanautismparentif tweeps know more about your private family life than your family does. #youmightbeanautismparentif you laugh, cry and smile at all these tweets at the same time. #YouMightBeAnAutismParentIf you know that when you’ve met one person with autism, you’ve met *one* person with autism.”
What this all means is that WE ARE NOT ALONE. Reading all these wonderful posts from strangers who I may never ever meet, makes me feel they are right here in the neighborhood. Sometimes, even the silliest hashtag can bring us closer together.
Check out the hashtag to see what new tweets have been posted: #youmightbeanautismparentif