reflections related to disability advocacy, family and (needed) cultural change
Sunday, April 18, 2010
Autism Awareness Month:Book Review:Autism and Allelulias
I was sent a copy of Autism and Allelulias by Kathleen Deyer Bolduc to review for Autism Awareness Month and I have to tell you, I love this book!
I have shared my Christian faith here before, but I was a bit anxious about this book. I was not in the mood for a sappy faith and disability book full of "if you would JUST..." then your path would be easy and strewn with rose petals. I have too many faith-full friends who work too hard to understand, interpret and deal with too many issues to have Autism minimized in this way.
At the same time I cannot tolerate the "disability is tragedy" and "Autism is the enemy" mindset either--people with Autism deserve better. They have more and ARE more than those mindsets allow.
Happily this book does not go down either of these common paths. The author has a 24 year old son with Autism, intellectual disabilities and an anxiety disorder. She has dealt with the challenges of learning, behavior and societal challenges. And she LOVES her son and wants the most for him--now, not after he somehow changes.
In short, she gets it.
It is a lovely little book. It's written in a devotional format with short chapters headed with a Bible verse followed by reflective anecdotes. There are also some touching poems (one about good mothers brought me to tears.) And each chapter ends with a prayer--prayers of joy, prayers for peace or acceptance, prayers of gratitude. You can read it in small daily doses, or read as many as you want, all at once.
You will laugh, and you will cry.
I think any parent of a child with a disability could enjoy this book--I did and neither of my kids who have diagnoses have autism. I think any parent of a child with difficult behaviors would relate to this family--Bolduc is honest and descriptive--she knows where you are. And her interpretations of her experiences--joyful and tough--through the eyes of faith will be a gift to any reader.
I am the mother of three, wife of one. I am a Partners in Policymaking graduate and a committed disability advocate. I want to catch up on my scrapbooking, learn more about art-journaling, get my house in order, read all the books I have set aside to read and change the world--not necessarily in that order. The opinions in this blog are my own and not those of any of employers.