Below is a picture of Sayini, our family friend's daughter, who is 36 years old now. Sayu, is what we call her. She went to special school for autistic kids and she can knit, draw, use a laptop, mobile phone, read books, do yoga, and boy, the way she folds the clothes, none of us can match her. THey are always folded neatly without a single shrink.
She was born to her parents after 12 years of their marriage and has a brother who is much older to her. Sayu's mother could not accept the fact that her kid has Autism and went into depression. Within a few months, she was diagnosed with uterus cancer and passed away when Sayu was just 2 years old. Her grandmother looked after her and later on, her father remarried. Usha, her stepmom, is extremely loving and the two of them share a strong, emotional bond. In fact, Sayu can stay away from her dad but not her mother. Hence, the stereotype 'sautheli maa' is broken here.
We all love Sayu and give importance to her when she comes home. Her family takes her everywhere too - hotels, picnics, weddings, and other celebrations. Traveling with an autistic can be challenging but recently I read that while on the move, we can use the code called 'Special Service Code” (DPNA: Disabled passenger with intellectual or developmental disability needing assistance). One can book the tickets using this and seek a lot of help - early boarding, a hot meal, and seating arrangements. This code is accepted universally. And, acceptance is all they need, so let's be more considerate. Next time you see a child with special needs, give him/her a wide SMILE.
Banner Image: chocchildrens
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Also read: What Is Autism? How To Identify The Signs?