Note For Anyone Writing About Me

Guide to Writing About Me

I am an Autistic person,not a person with autism. I am also not Aspergers. The diagnosis isn't even in the DSM anymore, and yes, I agree with the consolidation of all autistic spectrum stuff under one umbrella. I have other issues with the DSM.

I don't like Autism Speaks. I'm Disabled, not differently abled, and I am an Autistic activist. Self-advocate is true, but incomplete.

Citing My Posts

MLA: Hillary, Alyssa. "Post Title." Yes, That Too. Day Month Year of post. Web. Day Month Year of retrieval.

APA: Hillary, A. (Year Month Day of post.) Post Title. [Web log post]. Retrieved from http://yesthattoo.blogspot.com/post-specific-URL.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

And now I talk about the Autism Summer Institute

A good friend of mine was at the Autism Summer Institute at UNH. It was also her birthday close to this, and we don't live particularly near each other. She planned to have a birthday dinner one of the evenings at this conference. She invited me. So I hitched a ride up with another conference goer, and I slept on this friends floor while at the conference. I'm kinda a broke college student, so that's how I saved a decent bit and made going to the conference affordable.
Anyways, from the beginning:
The people I went up with did not realize that events started Monday morning, so they didn't get to school to pick me up until about 12:30pm. (They had planned to be earlier than this, but were running a bit behind schedule.) The strap on my duffel bag broke while I was running out to meet them, which was annoying. On the way up, we stopped at a Subway to eat, since people need food. We got to UNH around 4pm. My friend came down to meet me. She was not speaking at the time, but she is a very fast typist. I mean, I can do 60ish wpm, sometimes more when I'm on a roll. She falls somewhere between 120-180 wpm. That's getting into the range of how fast people TALK. So a laptop was quite handy, but it didn't really interfere with communication. She showed me a chapter from one of the novels she was working on during this time, and we talked about stuff and things and things and stuff. It was pretty fun, though I wish that the stuff that caused her to go non-speaking hadn't happened.
Conference officially stuff ended at 4, but a reception started at 4:30, so around 4:45-5, I went downstairs. I fangirled at a lot of people then. I mean, both co-founders of ASAN were there, and Amy Sequenzia was there, and there were so many awesome people, and yeah. I hung out with some of them, and we had a good time. The conference even put stim toys on the tables. It was pretty awesome. Eventually my friend came down (she was feeling better, and talking was working again by this point.) We discussed food options for dinner, and we went with ordering Chinese delivery. I got Udon noodles for me (yum!) and they even included chopsticks. When the food arrived, we jumped and flapped and shouted YAY over and over. Because we can do that if we want to, and we wanted to. They make the Autism Summer Institute and autistic friendly space, so it was all good. The delivery guy seemed a bit surprised, but we didn't really care.
Post dinner, we watched Wretches and Jabberers, and I assisted a math class since I didn't get the night off. Yay multitasking! After the movie, two of the people who were a big part of making it ran a Q and A session. I headed back up to go to sleep during it, but what I was there for of it was good. We'd see them typing answers to questions a few times later in the conference.
Tuesday morning, I got up, ate my friends leftover rice, and headed down to see Julia Bascoms keynote, which was about  communication and voice, which does not require speaking in the sense we usually think about it. (I fangirled at her too.) And she says my submission is going to be in the Loud Hands anthology. WOOO! Then we had breakout sessions, lunch (more of the leftover rice, since I wasn't about to spend money on conference lunch) and more sessions. I went to the session my friend presented, and then I went back to the room to decompress. Even in an autistic-friendly space, that many people is tiring, and there was still the dinner.
Now dinner. Dinner was interesting. I won't go into too much detail about it just in case someone figures out who the friend is since I don't think she wants loads of details about this, but it was so-so. The autistic people were winful, and the NT friend was pretty cool, but my friends parents are really ableist. They were pretty uncomfortable when I was flapping, and they at least tacitly support the JRC. Which is pretty bad. I helped my friend get through it, and I stuck around while she calmed down after. Post that, parallel play, aka we're all on our computers in the same room, sometimes interacting with each other and sometimes not. T'was good.
Wednesday was more presentations, and I got a free lunch ticket from another friend, so I got conference lunch. Learned a lot, had lots of fun, headed back, stopped at a really slow restaurant on the way, was exhausted when I got back, and fell flat on my face. That is my story.

No comments:

Post a Comment

I reserve the right to delete for personal attacks, derailing, dangerous comparisons, bigotry, and generally not wanting my blog to be a platform for certain things. As long as we stay within those ranges, discussion is AWESOME.