Saturday, April 14, 2012

The more weird the merrier- follow up on the Weird Movement

A while back I posted The Weirder The Better, in response to a movement I'd seen online encouraging people to be open about their differences as a way to help others realise they are not alone in feeling different and that it is OK. It's been exciting to see how far that movement has gone.
I've been thinking about trying to summarise it, but it seemed a bit of a hard task as so many people are joining in. Then this morning I saw a brilliant post by Homestyle Mama (with a side of autism) that sums it all up very very well. I asked her permission to share her post, and she gave it, so here it is!

Weirdness abounds...

I want to start with telling you, this is Parenting with Asperger's Syndrome's collection of posts from our lovely bloggers' confessions of weirdness- Weird is the new normal. This is her movement, I'm just a part of it but I would like to tell my side of the story to express my gratitude to the people who stepped forward and didn't leave me standing alone. This all was done for a boy, I just got the added benefit of knowing I am not alone too. Considering this, how many of our kids will get the additional benefit of knowing themselves? 
It all started with a 6th grader belonging to Parenting with Asperger's Syndrome. A clip from her post explaining the situation... 

"When my older son started 6th grade at a new middle school in a new area of our city, he told me he was nervous and afraid that other kids would think he's weird and make fun of him. He had experienced bullying at his previous middle school and was, understandably, afraid that it would happen again."

She came to my page looking to my people for advice so I re-posted her question and went on to write this post, Of course my kids are weird. I have to tell you, I really, really did not want to hit the "publish post" button. I had to for him but I was afraid of what my readers would think. I was worried about the laughing and pointing and the "how old are you?" questions headed in my direction. Writing the post I was sure that I was alone, that I was the weirdest of the weird because by the time they hit 30, most people are full fledged adults and aren't afraid of stupid things. I knew this boy wouldn't judge me but adults are not usually quite so understanding. I published, I shared and one of the first comments had me pouting and hanging my head in shame because it's not normal to live a life of fear. I deal. I do what I need to do and most of my fears, no one knows anything about because I have gotten good at hiding them because the way I build Alex's world to fit him is the way I do myself. As more and more comments rolled in about how brave I was for saying this and how they aren't comfortable admitting these things, the more sure I was that I was alone and this post was a bad, bad idea.

Then out of nowhere, my best friend stepped forward and told me I didn't have to stand alone with everyone staring at me. Ancora Impartial knew how hard it had to be and published his own post- of course I'm weird. I have to tell you, I have never loved him more than in that moment when I read the title of his post and knew he did this for me. I cried. I'm not a crier but...  I did.

Then One Tired Mama published Yep, I'm weird too!

Then Grape Jelly on Pizza... We're all a bit 'weird'

By this point, I am loving my friends and getting over my own insecurities and doubts about publishing my post but it doesn't stop there...

Parenting with Asperger's Syndrome wrote You're Perfect

I ran across a post by Ranting and raving all the way to the kitchen over on Holdin' Holden's blog titled "Who's the Weirdo?"

Our Life in Pieces wrote What's wrong with being weird?

It's all good baby wrote Is it weird?

It takes a village wrote What is this "normal" you speak of?

JT's Journey wrote On Weird and Further On Weird

No Guile: Life and Stories From Autism wrote I'm Weird SO WHAT!!!

Rebel Souls wrote Weird Apple

I love a child with autism wrote I'm weird and I enjoy it!

A Chameleon in the Spectrum wrote Random Acts of Weirdness

Mama's Turn Now- How my son with Asperger's is teaching me to be happy... wroteYou got to think of a better word than "Weird" to describe our family, that's for sure!

Red Vines and Red Wine wrote Letting my Freak Flag Fly!

Beyond Convention wrote And you thought my kids were weird

Autism Island sponsored a guest post from This is not what I signed up for over on This is not what I signed up for: my journey parenting autistic children called The weirder the better

There's more. It's not just our community of bloggers banding together to help a child and make a difference. The parents wanted in on this too. Parenting with Asperger's Syndrome collected comments from our readers who wanted to be heard too. She posted this collection of amazing stories in Weird is the New Normal- Part 2

Don't let it stop here. This is already way beyond anything I could imagine but please, don't let it end here. Let's show our kids that they are not alone. Let's show our kids what happens when we decide to stand together. What a difference you make when you see someone standing and have the compassion to not leave them standing alone. Let's show our kids that some small action we take can start something beautiful but first you have to take some small action or you have to be the one to step up and echo the action of another person. Teach them that we are united, that we can make a difference... 


Many Thanks to Mac for such a great, positive post!!  If you would like to check out Mac's blog click here, or to see her Facebook page click here

Before I go, I just wanted to share with you all about a conversation a friend and I had with our daughters yesterday. I went to visit an amazing lady I've known for years and years, whose friendship is very special to me. We have been friends through the diagnosis of both our children on the spectrum, and no matter where we live or what is happening in either of our lives we make time to stay in touch. It's one of those friendships that is relaxed, free of pressure and always there the same as it always was no matter how long its been. You know, one of those friendships that you can rely on no matter what.  Our daughters are 16 years old and born one week apart. They have known each other most of their lives, and share the bond of both having Autistic siblings. For the first time the girls joined us to chat as we visited. The discussion was about Autism, and how people who don't know about it or live with it view it. It made me glad and proud to hear both the girls talk about how they view Autism as normal and the people who are scared of it as missing out on something. To me it sounded like these two teenaged girls were saying that Autism, in all its weirdness, is kind of cool, and they were both proud of their siblings and would stick up for them to anyone who wanted to criticise their behaviour, even if they sometimes find living with Autism a bit uncomfortable. How wonderful a privilege to be able to be a part of raising people in the next generation who are willing and happy to accept differences and weirdness and embrace it as being good!! And I am glad to be part of a blogging community that are all trying to do the same thing! 

No comments:

Post a Comment

You can read my comment policy by clicking on the link at the top right of the page.