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My name is Aly. I am 12 years old and I have autism.
I have a hard time communicating with people I don’t know at all but with other people I have good communication. It’s hard to make friends when you have autism because you have to get better at communicating.
I get confused when I am in a room and I don’t know what is going on. I sometimes move in an awkward way that I call bumbling. I can be nervous and shy when I have to be in a group and when there are a lot of other people around. I started middle school this year and it helped to go to a summer class to learn about middle school and practice going to classes and meeting some teachers. Teachers are very important to me and I have a lot of favorite teachers. When I am at school I sometimes get angry about the other kids talking so much, so lunch and recess are really hard for me.
When I was a baby I was smiley and liked to be held. I didn’t talk or respond to my name. When I was two my mom and dad say I started getting sad and upset a lot. I started learning how to talk though and only really started talking a lot when I was five years old. I was really good at puzzles when I was little but didn’t play much with my big sister. I did therapy in my house and that helped me learn how to talk and got me ready for school.
I am confident about the things that are easy for me, like writing, reading and doing research on things I like on my computer. I like words. I have always been good at spelling and I learn what words mean pretty fast. I love movies the best. I like to be alone without anybody around and ask why I have to try new things. My mom and dad say it’s not good for me to be by myself all the time. They want me to do things to try to become more brave and to be more courageous in public, so I have done dance recitals, a fashion show, choir, and I’m going to try theater this spring. If something is different from my schedule I get very nervous about it but then I usually end up having a good time and glad I did it.
I know that sometimes kids with autism can do wrong things that can make people mad at them. But that’s because they don’t know what to do. We need people to help us understand and that’s what helps us learn what to do. Autism is a hard thing to have but it gets easier the older you get.