Category Archives: update

Re-Investing in the Future: Autistic Artistic Carnival Coming Soon this June 18, 2019 for Autistic Pride Day

Introducing...... Drum Roll Please...
2019 All New, All Inclusive, All Ages,
All Parts of Autistic Culture from
The Autistic Pride Day Event 6 years
in a row, from 2010 to 2015...Autistic Pride Day, June 18...
It’s the One, the Only, the Much More Multi-Million Idea in a Lifetime,
Hosted by Drive Mom Crazy Blog, by theamazinJ:
Autistic Artistic Carnival
2019
Introducing…… Drum Roll Please…
2019 All New, All Inclusive, All Ages,
All Parts of Autistic Culture from
The Autistic Pride Day Event 6 years
in a row, from 2010 to 2015…Autistic Pride Day, June 18…
It’s the One, the Only, the Much More Multi-Million Idea in a Lifetime,
Hosted by Drive Mom Crazy Blog, by theamazinJ:
Autistic Artistic Carnival
2019

Submissions for this year’s reinvestment in the future for the Autistic Artistic Carnival is as it always was from 2010 to 2015. Any Autistic person from the all ages from youth to Adult to Seniors, from all parts of the Autistic culture regardless. It does not matter if the Autistic individual lives independently as an adult, lives with their parents, lives among their Direct Support Professionals, lives among Shared Living, Lives in a Residential School, goes to Public School, goes to Private School, goes to a Charter School, is a Senior citizen or even a Veteran. Also, anyone can submit as always, not just in the United States. There has been so many people throughout the world who had submitted their art work, films, poetry, writing compositions, brief short stories to keep people’s attentions, music, paintings, photoshop work, media work, scientific work, and for this year to dedicate to the Society for Disability Studies I would like to introduce any Disability Studies Scholars to submit any of their work they want to share in an image or presentation JPEG format for me.

This year is the reinvestment of the Autistic Artistic Carnival where will essentially create huge Autistic Acceptance, however a Tsunami of Human Acceptance across all Neurotribes from autism to autism with intellectual disability to developmental disabilities generally to psychiatric disabilities across the the mental health field. Neurotribes even exist among those who are nonautistic or Neurotypical, but generally speaking this is a socially constructed Neurotribe based out of the world. This year, more than ever, it will be a year for Disability Awareness Celebration and Acceptance no matter what!

Please email me your submissions to autisticprideday@gmail.com

by June 10, 2019

A Wild Journey to Acceptance

Hi Everyone,

(TRIGGER WARNING: There is noted talk of mental health crisis in this post)

I know it has been a while since I posted on this blog. It has been a long time because I am finishing my Master of Arts in Disability Studies at CUNY School of Professional Studies this Spring Semester 2019. I also turn 40 years old this year. I have been through a lot since 1997 to 2018. From that whole time which is a 20 year lifespan, I made a lot of stupid mistakes in my life, was very naive, and even went through 2 psychiatrists during that time. The first psychiatrist during that time of the first 8 years was a complete mess and utter disaster which caused the beginning of a living nightmare for me.

During the second half the 20 year lifespan, was seeing a different psychiatrist to try to stop the living nightmare from occurring. The living nightmare continued unfortunately until very recently in October 2018, when it started to subside and ease more and more. Now, I have to clean up everything that happened from 1997 when I first started my undergraduate schooling to October 2018 and take responsibility for everything. The best thing I can say will help me through this process is finishing my capstone to complete my Master of Arts degree in Disability Studies.

One of the things I learned in graduate school at CUNY is that I learned the process of coming up with my own ideas and learned that I don’t have agree with everyone while certainly I don’t even have to disagree with everyone either. I just have to come up with my own ideas and add to the discussions that are already happening. I also learned what I want to do with Disability studies. A strength is to use my knowledge and passion in Disability studies to use media like film to create media for the public to understand the message. I even made my first movie in 2017 when taking a noncredit class at School for Visual Arts in digital filmmaking. I met a friend from School for Visual Arts who is an actor to help me film it. It is on YouTube and this past summer I went to Joey Travolta’s Film Camp in New Jersey where I met someone to help me caption the film. I also do other things too with the paintings I make and the poetry I write as well.

Yet, I also have to learn from all the mistakes I made from 1997 to 2018 as well and there were too many of them. From being too adamant about choosing an undergraduate major as a Freshmen right out of high school to being too ashamed to admit a medication that is used for OCD caused me to be suicidal in Spring 1998. I told medical professionals I was hallucinating because I was too naive and thought telling that sounded better.

I actually did The Moth at the JCC Manhattan for the 2014 Reel Abilities telling my story in less than 5 minutes about my path to autism acceptance starting off with the experience from Spring 1998. It didn’t make it past the dress rehearsal. However, The Moth and the other participants, thought I should have done the final performance telling my story. However, it was the decision of Reel Abilities to choose who they wanted for the final performance. Everyone else loved my story. So, they never chose my story.

Anyway, from Spring 1998 to October 2018, I started on a whole lot of medications that literally distorted my thinking and created a living nightmare. When I finally left the first psychiatrist who started this, I saw a new psychiatrist in 2005 to this present day who wanted to change my medication all that time. This new psychiatrist confirmed what I know now that I am Autistic. However, it took him until October 2018 to change my medication to a different class of medication when the living nightmare finally came to an end.

One can only imagine all the stupidity and mistakes that occurred from 1997 to 2018. However, one can also know the positive things that happened too. I also learned recently since October 2018, sometimes when people see positive changes in the person who starts to feel good about themselves, those people don’t like it especially when they see the person who feels more positive no longer gives their power away. Hence, we then learn who really cares.

Many of the things I did in that 20 year lifespan, I wish I could take back and change, but I can’t. Instead I have to move forward with my life experiences from those 20 years taking the good with the bad. Every experience I had was a learning experience and it was the path I needed to go through whether I like it or not. Whatever experiences I will have in the future from this day moving forward, I will be ready for gaining the wisdom from those past 20 years and never go back to rehash any of those past experiences. They were just experiences I needed to go through to get to the present day.

As I move forward, I have to say that my experiences in graduate school has given me the opportunity to grow tremendously. I even did an unpaid internship as an elective during Spring 2018 for the New York City Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities (MOPD). I learned so much from the Commissioner of the MOPD, Victor Calise and his whole staff. From that internship, I impressed so many people.

When I put the internship on my LinkedIn account after the semester was over, a connection I had for like 10 years or so, saw it, and emailed me to interview with him. The workplace was very close to where I live and is at the local independent living center. I interviewed with this independent living center and now I am working part time there while I finish my Masters degree. My last semester in graduate school I will be busy doing a lot of reflecting and creating the project I want to do for my capstone. When I graduate this May to receive my Masters degree, I will remember that it will be something I earned and will be proud of that I finally did something for myself without any influences from anyone else. As a professor once told me too, no one can take that away from me.

I will also remember where I came from during the 20 year lifespan that wound up being a living nightmare for not only myself, but my family too. I just need to remember it was the past, and now I can move forward. As I move forward, I can only remember how much I wanted to start graduate school, but couldn’t start right away. So, I took an undergraduate disability studies course at CUNY that the professor teaching it was very impressed with me, and helped me to start my graduate program by writing a recommendation for me to become a Kennedy Fellow for my first semester in graduate school. I can also remember something my professors told me during my first graduate semester at CUNY, to always think broadly and it is okay not to be perfect. I will always remember that. Now, I am a Kennedy Fellow once again as I finish up this degree.

It has been a long journey to get to this point with the new medication and I feel happy.

J

Every Day We Need to give Thanks and Give Back

I have been through the worst, I’ve been through the pains, I’ve even been through many heart aches in my life with people in general. People have failed me, people have been disappointing me, but most importantly I need to remember what I do in my life and what I have in my life of the people who support me. Sometimes I feel my voice, my intelligence, and my way of being are not acknowledged and listened to. Or, is that what it may seem like to me sometimes? I know there are many people who support me in my network including my family.

Thanksgiving is a day that was started that turned around over many years. It first started as a racist holiday against indigenous people. I suppose now people are trying to save Thanksgiving because they are turning it into a day to be grateful for everything we have and will have or had already. However, Thanksgiving should not be a day just to be grateful because we should always be grateful. Thanksgiving instead should be a day for everyone as a community in the world to come together to rejoice, rejuvenate, laugh, smile, and cry together. Sometimes it can be hard to, but we need to try to be around people to show who we are.

It’s a day that the whole community enjoys each other’s company and becomes fulfilled with life. It’s a day we should cherish regardless of it’s racist roots in history because we need to imagine ourselves always being the loving person most of our families tried to push us to become including mine. Love is something we all need. We all love, we all may need kisses, we all may need hugs, and we all need someone to connect to, to be a human being striving for our success.

Traditionally on Thanksgiving, people make huge feasts of food which includes grilling, baking, or frying turkeys. For every food we have, for every drink we drink, for every food and drink leftover, let’s think about the people who don’t have food during this holiday season. What happened to these people? Are they forgotten? Are they lost? Are they gone? The people I am talking about are still human who are not forgotten, not lost, and not gone, they are just here because for whatever reason no one understood them.

Love your family no matter what. Love the incredible things you get from the people around you. Yes, sometimes people in your family may disagree with us even when both sides of the argument think they are right. No matter what there is no right answer to an argument. People differ on issues because of everyone’s life experiences, philosophies, and observations of the world. The problem is that when someone is Disabled, many Non-Disabled people just don’t understand the life of a person who is Disabled. They only guess about what difficulties the disability community feels, and there could be back and forth calling names to each other, but this does not solve solve anything except a bigger battle. We need to accept that everyone has different viewpoints and every one has different things they have to say. No one needs to be silenced while they listen to one side of a story, instead everyone needs to understand the whole side of every story.

There is a lot of unrest in the world right now because of racism, because of ableism, because of ageism, because of sexism, because of heterosexism, because of classism, because of so many other ways of discrimination in the world. Yet, we need to forget about our egos, forget about who does what to who, and just remember that we are a community. A community who loves, a community of amazing individuals in the Human race, who cherishes everything we can ever do in the world. Sometimes it can be hard to drop our guards of anger and drop our fears we may have, but it is a necessary part of being human to be able to let it go to be free and happy.

I hope you love, I hope you are smiling, I hope if you are crying you have someone to hold onto, and if you are angry you can let it go to feel joy. Sometimes it’s hard, sometimes it’s messy, and sometimes we feel we cannot let go, however regardless of what we think we can’t do, we can always make our own choices. If we choose love, we don’t fear. If we choose fear, we become hateful. Most importantly, if we choose fear and anger, then we need to take a deep breath in, to allow are happiness in, to remember what humanity is all about; having community.

I know that many parents fear for their children who may have disabilities. It can be hard, it can be rough, it can be really difficult trying to figure out how to help their Disabled child. People need to remember to look at the many Disabled people who have been successful with the many aspects of their life as a means to ask questions and reach out for support. Disabled people need to listen to these parents so that they can give advice that matters. These parents need to listen to the advice instead of seeming to ignore the words of the disability community speaking up. Disability cultures exist which includes Autistic culture.

More importantly, this happens a lot in the autism community way too much. Parents look to researchers and other professionals for help instead of looking to Autistic people for the help they need. Researchers and other professionals need to work with us by listening to the Autistic people who can really give a better understanding of what it means to be on the autistic spectrum. One can only guess what it’s like if they are not on the spectrum themselves.

We need to be grateful that some researchers and other professionals have started doing this, but everyone also needs to slow down and breathe too. All in all, everyone who isn’t listening and learning to the Disabled including Autistic people, need to start now. In return, everyone can learn about about each other if only they listen to the things to be taught from those who are different from them. Then, only then, people everywhere will understand and accept a cultural difference that is different from who they are.

Hope everyone had a Happy Thanksgiving!!! Please listen, learn, and love the support network you have with the family that loves you no matter what. #lovenotfear

by the way…

This year is #GivingTuesday on December 2! This Giving Tuesday I hope you support The Autistic Self-Advocacy Network because A.S.A.N. really means to me the importance of community and accepting each other’s differences especially the cultural differences of Disability culture and Autistic culture. A.S.A.N. really is a breakthrough in the world because it really means that everyone who is Autistic or have other disabilities can express their voice or feelings of how they feel without being criticized. A.S.A.N. is about teaching the world what it means to understand each other’s cultural differences regardless of what they may be. It teaches everyone to be accepting even when it’s difficult to accept. Most importantly A.S.A.N. really teaches to love and educate people no matter who they are. The more people are educated, the more they will love, the less fearful and angry they become.

There are other organizations too that support Autistic people too. For example, they are Autism Women’s Network (AWN), Ollibean, Thinking Person’s Guide To Autism (TPGA), Association for Autistic Community, Autistic Community for Equality Facebook page, and G.R.A.S.P. (Global and Regional Autism Spectrum Partnership). When we think about cultures like Autistic culture, we need to think about supporting everyone without feeling like we are better than anyone else. We are all Human. We are all different and we are all learning from each other. The Autistic Rights movement only started about less 30 years ago, but we still have a long way to go.

I also trying to seek out funding for graduate school at CUNY. I started this crowdsourcing, to try to open up some doors. If anyone has any ideas for scholarship, please let me know!


OUT, J

Struggles for Control and Supporting Individualities within Caring Communities

Everyone in society likes to be in control. Being in control of another person is not being a community. Everyone loves it because they feel they have power over others. This also creates entitlement, sadly. It means that people tend to love their ego over themselves that they lose sight of who they are. Ego controls not only the person, but can control others within the community as well. If a person loses control over others, they will do harmful things to society and/or themselves. The only control we should have is the control of ourselves while following the laws the community created. By controlling what we do without experiencing being in control or being controlled, we become a better person within the community.

So, how did Control start? What does being in control mean?

Control means from the dictionary, the power to influence or direct people’s behavior or the course of events. When a person is in control of others, they lose sight of their own humanity, and their ego gets in the way. However, controlling others is something that happens because everyone feels they can not trust their peers. To build trust in others, we need to all let go of our fears and build community.

Community means from the dictionary, a group of people living in the same place or having a particular characteristic in common. However, it’s more than that, community is supportive of each other, it’s building relationships, is giving each member of the community the right to speak their mind, is about listening to everyone, it is not having a leader controlling others while instead mediating others, and being happy for everyone in that community who shares with all their peers. Community is not having a leader, community is not having one person in control of the whole community, and not having people in the community living exclusively in richer love than the others. No one needs to use their own agenda as the laws for the community because everyone practices the community’s bill of rights and commandments that everyone feels they want from the community. Everyone votes on it and practices the laws. An agenda everyone has for themselves should be individualized for that person only to build self-determination.

Looking back in History, there has been much control over others losing sight of our own self. However, if we look back thousands of years ago when the first Human beings were around, we didn’t have governments set up, we didn’t have religions, and we certainly didn’t have people controlling each other. There were just small tribes in the world building up the Human race with their own faith. Everyone lived with self-determination, but their were no laws or rules. There was just our human nature. However, being able to create a safe community, leaders were created to ensure every member of the community had support for everyone’s needs and wants. If the majority of people wanted certain rules or laws to be created for a safe and supportive community, then the community needs to follow those laws. Laws change in the community with every generation. When generations collide on theories of law like in terms of what Humanity would need or want, we begin our free will to argue and fight. For example, the fight between the Autism and Autistic communities. As the community grew in the past and continues to grow, the people do too, but so do their egos. As egos grew stronger, controlling others began becoming stronger within the community. These laws are what we call government today with the leaders we vote for to fight for what we want and need in the country we live in.

The United States is a free country because it’s a country where it’s citizens can talk to each other about what laws we don’t like and what laws we do like. Laws need to be followed to help guide us with living our own life. Everyone needs to know that the laws help support and protect us at the same time. We can not have anarchy anywhere in the world because human nature does not allow us to since there is ego.

Now, the Human race is more than 5 billion individuals in the world with millions of communities for people to live in different governments, and we have lost sight of the first community thousands of years ago which began humanity. Everyone has different perspectives, everyone has different ways of doing things, and no body is being supportive in the communities anymore. Instead everyone wants to be in control. Society even created the media to control what people will see by controlling what they want us to understand about what goes on in the Human race.

All in all, the community who has their individual people with their properties and practices which make them the person they are, can trust each other gaining invaluable interaction and experience from each other. We as a whole community wherever we live in the world need to continue supporting and promoting safe space, secure home life, and rules everyone can follow. We all live in this world to encourage each other to fulfill our paths whatever we do to contribute without controlling any one.

Out, J

Neurotypical Documentary to be shown on PBS POV!

This post is to inform everyone that Neurotypical, the Movie documentary will be playing on PBS POV this Tuesday, July 30 at 10pm eastern time. As many of you may have seen, I reviewed this movie during the Summer Rooftop series in Brooklyn in 2011. Please read my review of this documentary here!

Please also read the Press Release from PBS, here, too!!

Don’t forget to watch an interview on PBS POV Tuesday, July 30, from 2:00 to 3:00pm eastern time, with the filmmakers Adam and Ron Larsen who will also be with one of the subjects from the film, Wolf Dunaway! I will post a link to the live stream on Tuesday!

Please watch the trailer either here or on the link to my review in 2011 on DMC!

Watch Neurotypical – Trailer on PBS. See more from POV.