Coloring Outside the Lines
Something that just occurred to me, is that autism IS coloring outside the lines. For autism acceptance month, we chose to have a plain OTIS shirt. Meaning that each shirt would be different just like the autism spectrum. In the past, we had autism awareness shirts that said “This Is My Autism Awareness Shirt”. But this year, we decided to leave them blank. We also decided to call this April, Autism Acceptance month instead of awareness. Otis was a service dog that our founder’s son had in his life, whom he loved very much. We decided to make him our mascot. One of my coworkers was wearing one of the shirts. She told me that she didn’t like hers because some of the color had gone outside of the lines when she washed it. I told her that is what autism really is, coloring outside the lines. She told me she’d keep it that way, because of that statement. If you really think about it, that’s what it is. Just a different way to color the world. We have so much diversity & representation here. It totally made sense to have these shirts be plain. We wanted everyone’s specialness to shine through. With each shirt, you can see everyone’s uniqueness. Each shirt was different & awesome. I personally loved it & might add a little bit more pizazz to mine, only because it’s very plain & I want more color. Otherwise, I would leave it as is. In other words, autism is coloring outside the lines, learning differently, & being able to explore styles of learning with the help of friends, teachers & everyone in between. So, please color outside the lines, mark up your shirt & be bold!