April is autism awareness month and as a mother of a child diagnosed with autism, I wanted to take this opportunity to talk about what I hope the world will become more aware of.
Slogans like “embrace autism” or “celebrate autism” begin to crowd my news feed on Facebook this time of year, and I look longingly at the “F*$#@ Cancer” campaign wondering why I have to make nice with autism when I really want to tell it to just go away. But how can I feel that way? I don’t believe that my son’s challenges define him. He impresses me daily with his ability to rise above his limitations. Those limitations are not who he is.
Shortly after we received our son’s autism diagnosis, we attended a training seminar which was followed by several like venues to learn more about the life we were being thrust into. The first thing we learned which has since been reiterated a hundred different ways is, “There is no known cause, and there is no known cure for autism.”
I fervently disagree. However, I understand that when people are being faced with something that has no cause and no cure, the human condition encourages us to embrace it. If you can’t beat it, join it. If you can’t rise above it, swim in it. If you can’t win, play along. If there is no cure, celebrate the neurodiversity. But I believe we can rise above it. I believe that the number of children diagnosed with autism each year can decrease instead of increase.
Autism is not like being born with a different skin tone or a different weight. In most cases it is an actual neurological dysfunction and because of this, it is our responsibility to discover the cause and the cure.
One reason I think this subject is so difficult to discuss openly and honestly is because in an age so focused on equality we forget that equality is about people being equal despite having a physical, mental or spiritual disability.
I believe that autism has many different causes from the lack of nutrition and increase of toxins in our food to the aggressive vaccine schedules; primitive medical practices; family stress; genetic dispositions; environmental stressors and the overall result of a world that “progressed” faster than we could adapt.
With 1 in 68 children being diagnosed with autism, and those numbers steadily rising, awareness is no longer a lofty goal. It is time we take action.
The world is hurting and the only thing we should love, embrace and celebrate are these beautiful children who rise above their complications and shine brightly through their challenges. These children who fleetingly look us in the eyes, remind us that we need to take action and improve our world because we are hurting them.
Chiropractic care has done the most to improve my son’s autism symptoms. It has allowed him to express his innate intelligence by improving his overall function through the removal of subluxation or vertebral misalignments. These misalignments were impeding his body’s ability to communicate with itself through the central nervous system. We have also found improvements through dietary changes, increased movement and therapies. I believe that anything which can be improved can be cured.
My desire to recover my son from autism has not always been popular, and some parents of children with similar diagnosis have accused me of not accepting who my son is. My son is one of life’s most incredible expressions of pure beauty, innocence, compassion, love and joy, and I will forever take action against anything that stands in his way of expressing that.
In honor of autism awareness month, I ask that we acknowledge that we are seeing a universal symptom of an underlying problem. We can cover the symptoms by celebrating the challenges, but until we adjust our lifestyle, until we remove the disruptions that are causing our children to disconnect, it will continue to grow. I believe the epidemic of autism is a wake up call that urges us to embrace a holistic lifestyle and become grounded. A connected society will produce connected kids. Autism Action: It’s time we get connected!
Janaiah von Hassel, CEO of Kiro Kidz, is a proud mother of two young boys, Landon and Corbin, who she happily nurtures alongside her husband, Matthew. Janaiah turned to chiropractic after receiving her son’s autism diagnosis and, in doing so, discovered that her entire family benefited from care. In her desire to spread the word, she has found great fulfillment in her work with Dr. Todd Defayette on the creation and development of Kiro Kidz. This animated children’s book tells an exciting tale of the benefits of chiropractic care.