Running for Matthew
When I was 33 years old, I delivered my 3rd child on December 21st, 1992. I thought, what a blessing, a Christmas baby. I was so blessed. He is my little red haired, brown eyed baby, just perfect and he was. Come to find out 2 1/2 years later my baby boy was diagnosed with Autism. Being a nurse, I knew what I had to do. Bringing up a child with Autism takes knowledge, committment, trust in God, your family, doctors, and as many people that can help you. Matthew was also the reason I went on to have my last 2 children. Nicholas, Melissa, Amy Jo and Annie Lyn were and are still today his best friends. Matthew with all he went through growing up in a time where Autism was on the rise and not many knew how to deal with that, overcame countless obstacles and now lives in Orlando, Florida. He works for the Disney Golf courses, lives independently, flies all over the USA by himself and remains to be my true blessing from God.
While Matthew is considered a success story, it didn't come without it's major challenges throughout the years. That included the world not accepting him. Autism Speaks stands for the rights of all children who are seen different but are just like any other child. I want to bring awareness to communities who don't know a lot about autism and I want to bring support to the families who feel alone raising children with autism. It felt a lot of times as a mom watching her son struggle, that I was alone. No one should EVER feel that way. I am running in honor of my son and raising money to help the millions of children just like him trying to find their places in the world.
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