BENEFITING: TRAIN 4 AUTISM
ORGANIZER: TRAIN 4 AUTISM
EVENT: 2015 LA Marathon
EVENT DATE: Mar 15, 2015
On March 15th I'll be running in the LA Marathon as a charity runner. I am attempting the 26.2 miles in order to raise money for the nonprofit organization Train 4 Autism. If you are able to help, any donation you can make will be greatly appreciated.
Running this race is particularly heartfelt for me as I will be running in honor of one of the greatest guys I know: my nephew, Jonathan!
At 10 years old, Jonathan is one of the jolliest little people that I know (who also happens to be as tall as I am). Jonathan is in an ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) classroom where he is thriving in a structured environment that meets his needs. He is learning to speak with more words and sentences and make connections with others. Most importantly, he is a gluten free, song loving, twinkle eyed, laughing 5th grader who is learning to express himself more and more every day.
I asked my sister to share a joyous moment with me, and if you don't mind, I'd like to share it with you.
"His first official word was Mom. He said it when he was 5 years old while working with an in-home ABA aide. It was the most beautiful word I have ever heard. After that, we worked on his words every day and night wth prompting followed by a motion to the mouth while talking. We worked on I-Love-You-Mama.
When it's time to go to bed, I jump on the bed with Jonathan. Even though it comes out giggly and silly, he tells me, "I love you Mama." I tell him, "I love you," give him a kiss, and he asks for more kisses. Although it's small, he worked so hard. His words make my heart happy."
Thank you for taking the time to read this,
What is Autism? Autism is a devastating neurological and biological disorder that typically affects children between the ages in 18 months to five years of age. Autism currently affects 1 in every 110 children today. It is estimated there are over 1 million people in the United States alone with autism. Autism affects each individual differently and at different levels of severity. Some people with autism are severely affected, cannot speak, require constant one-on-one care, and are never able to live independently. While others who have less severe symptoms, can communicate, and eventually acquire the necessary skills to live on their own.