Who I am… all about me

I live out in the middle of no where 🙂  Many of you may not know where Colwich, Ks is, but it is a little town and I live a few miles outside of it, surrounded by fields of soybeans, wheat and brome (hay for all you city folk).  There are very few trees, although every year I plant quite a few, but for some reason they end up dry sticks pointing out of the earth.  I wish I had a green thumb, but I am pretty sure my thumbs contain the kiss of death, because things die when I plant them in the ground.  It’s a good thing that I don’t depend on farming for my living.

I am nearing the edge of forty, and by that, I mean that I am going to plunge over that cliff next year.  I live with my husband and two daughters, three dogs, twenty chickens and an autistic parrot.  He is obsessive about his cage and will go nuts if you change a single thing in it.  He also thinks that he can’t fly, so he waddles around behind all of us and tries to bite everyone’s toes.  He also talks in a demonic voice and the only words you can understand are bad words.

I am also the mother to a beautiful son who was severely autistic.  He passed away two and a half years ago when he wandered from our home and drowned in a neighbor’s pond.  It is very difficult for me to talk about, but if you would like to know more, you can visit his site www.masonalert.org which is the site we set up after he died to promote wandering awareness and educate others about a serious symptom of autism that not many are aware of.  His entire story is there.  It is painful and awful and fills me with grief, sorrow and despair, but we chose to share it to keep what happened to him from happening to others.

Because of the events that happened to me over the last few years, I have chosen to work with children that suffer from autism in the same way that my son did.  I love working with non-verbal, severely autistic children.  The one goal that I have with each child I interact with is to give them a way to communicate.  It sounds like a simple goal, but it is, in truth, very complex, frustrating, inspiring, interesting, fun and difficult, and each child is different, so what succeeds with one, doesn’t necessarily work with another.

My hobbies are reading, reading, reading, writing, public speaking on autism awareness, crocheting, and keeping what is left of my family happy, healthy, strong and together.

As you probably guessed, I love to read.  I think I would read a phone book if that was all that I had.  I read very fast and can go through several books a day, so I have an enormous library of books that I keep.  My prized possession is my sony reader that I bought for myself three years ago.  I can keep thousands of books on it and not worry about running out.  I’ve also found that I enjoy listening to audio books.  Not all audio books, but quite a few.  I can’t stand the ones that have silly accents.  If it is a good audio book, you forget that you are being read too.

Well, that is probably more than you actually wanted to know about me.  If you desperately crave more information about my boring life, feel free to leave me a message!!!!



1 thought on “Who I am… all about me”

  1. Hi Sheila,
    I am sorry about Mason. I have a 10 year old autistic son and I couldn’t imagine going through what you have. I commend you for shining the spotlight on this issue that many of us special needs parents dread. I am not sure if we are connected on LinkedIn but, if not I’d like to. Please check out my site at popearth.org – we are a 501c3 charity dedicated to helping people with disabilities. Our first project is The Om Holistic Center for Autism & Developmental Disorders. Its the first low cost to free holistic center in the country. Thank you for reaching out to help other children, I am sure Mason is smiling at you. Keep your head up-Deb

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