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Today by Lisa Morgan M.Ed. CAS

March 31, 2020 Spectrum Women

My alarm goes off.  As my mind transitions from sleeping to waking up, I wonder what day it is.  Oh, yeah, it’s today.  It’s always today now.  There’s no schedule to discern one day from the next anymore.  It’s the spring of 2020 and the whole world changed just a couple of weeks ago. Then, I start to remember.  This today is going to be a great day!  Things are really going to get exciting!  I had decided the night before to shake things up a bit and have my coffee in the living room by the window instead of […]

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Be Mindful, Be Present, Be You: How to Handle Crisis Anxiety – Becca Lory Hector, CAS, BCCS

March 21, 2020 Spectrum Women

With the world around us a chaotic mess, it is getting harder and harder to avoid becoming a giant, swirling, ball of anxiety. The current pandemic has disrupted our lives and the world as we know it is on hold for the foreseeable future. It has interrupted routines, forced schools to close, and sent many of us to work from home or not at all. It feels as though the rug has been pulled out from under our proverbial feet. If you are feeling a growing sense of dread, you are far from alone. Most of us are feeling overwhelmed […]

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The Carnival by Lisa Morgan M.Ed CAS

March 7, 2020 Spectrum Women

When I was a kid I went to a carnival.  It was one of those small town carnivals celebrating summer with music, craft tables, the smell of fried food, and games to play for a stuffed animal. This carnival had a cake walk.  It’s a game like musical chairs where people walk around an area until the music stops.  If you happened to stop in front of a cake, you got to keep it.  All the cakes were homemade and delicious!  But, I digress. It wasn’t a time for cake then as you will see as my story progresses. So, […]

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Autism: A Brave New World? by Maura Campbell

February 10, 2020 Spectrum Women

“You’re very brave.” I get that a lot. In fact, I’ve been hearing it constantly ever since I ‘came out’ as autistic. It’s usually said kindly (I think) and so I try to take it in the spirit intended. But every time someone says to me “You’re very brave” it gets me thinking: why is it ‘brave’ to be open about being autistic? I think there might be a few reasons for that. They might see it as ‘brave’ for me to apply a word to myself that’s generally represented as something very different in popular culture – usually a […]

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I Didn’t Know Back Then by Lisa Morgan M.Ed. CAS

February 3, 2020 Spectrum Women

Being born autistic in the 60’s put my life on a trajectory of unknowns. Although there were hints about the way my brain was wired – they were misunderstood back then.  People couldn’t figure me out. I couldn’t figure me out. The comments I heard the most were: ‘you are so quiet’, ‘you are too sensitive’, ‘you should try to make friends’, and ‘can I copy your homework?’. ‘You are so quiet.’  I’ve heard this statement so much throughout my life I could scream, but that would be uncharacteristic – wouldn’t it?  One of the great mysteries of my life […]

Employment

Reducing Workplace Stress: Working Together on Self-Care by Barb Cook, M.Aut., Dip.HSc.

January 27, 2020 Spectrum Women

How often do we hear ourselves saying “I just need to finish this job and then I can take a break”, or “If I can get this project finished, I can then take a couple of days off”? When we tell ourselves this over and over again, without taking action to ‘look after ourselves’, the cracks inevitably will begin to appear. The internal motivation of “I’ll get this job done, then I can…”, becomes the ultimate words of dread, with the “then I can…” seeming to never come, and the list of ‘things to do’ becomes increasingly bigger. The more […]

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Proverbs 31, What? by Shannon Hughes

January 23, 2020 Spectrum Women

*Content warning: suicidal ideation, depression, language Any woman who grew up in a fundamentalist Christian home knows that the Proverbs 31 woman is the ideal she should aspire to. Even if she’s not familiar with the scripture reference, she’s familiar with the archetype. The Proverbs 31 woman is the backbone of her community, the Martha Stewart who cares for her husband and children with stalwart devotion, executing feats of organization and economy that undergird civilization itself. She’s strong, savvy, and entrepreneurial. Because of her, her loved ones are protected, and most importantly, her husband is a success. When I was […]

Employment

It’s Never too Early to Start: Planning Employment Futures with Autistic and Neurodivergent People by Barb Cook, M.Aut.

January 17, 2020 Spectrum Women

Opinion piece. The employment world can be a difficult one to navigate for most people, let alone for autistic and neurodivergent people. The employment journey starts way before getting a job. Society is led to believe that from a young age we need to get a good education, strive for a well-paid job, earn money to buy your first car, earn more money to move out and live on your own or with a partner, save and earn to support a family… the list goes on. This is something that many people aim for, that idyllic, perfect, fulfilling life. But […]

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The Power of Acceptance by Lisa Morgan

December 22, 2019 Spectrum Women

I got a homemade gift the other day. It’s absolutely incredible in so many ways. The gift itself is beautiful, the person who made it even more so.  There are many layers of meaning within the gift; I’m still processing it days later. I want to share one meaning because it shows the power of acceptance. The gift is a stunning stained glass picture of an elegant flower sitting atop a strong stem with various swirling leaves. It is important to note that, as the colors were chosen with care, there were colors not chosen with just as much, if […]

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Overcoming PTSD with ASD by Lisa Morgan M.Ed. CAS

December 1, 2019 Spectrum Women

PTSD is a harsh, stern, taskmaster.  Triggers are everywhere. They can even come in safe places and through a person you trust.  Those are the difficult ones because, if the trigger was very unpleasant, going back to that same safe place or person for help – does not feel safe. Living with ASD keeps the traumatic reliving of memories all close and fresh so to speak.  For many, our autism keeps the triggered memories alive through rumination of thought; keeps them graphic through visual thinking and lucid nightmares, and keeps us alone through withdrawing to cope. With PTSD there’s a […]

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