Meet Brooklyn, Olivia and Dorian from British Columbia
Society in general is a challenge but autism has made it a lot harder, especially with having three children diagnosed, but we continue to live every day to the fullest and we are grateful to god for giving us three wonderful children.
The three siblings, Brooklyn, Olivia and Dorian, were diagnosed with autism at various stages in life, and while they share this diagnosis, they are all very different.
Brooklyn, who is the oldest sibling, is very good at a variety of sports, coding, and loves doing clay art. Olivia is great at crafts and loves everything rainbows and unicorns! And Dorian, the youngest, is a real-life superhero, loves wearing his superhero costumes and playing with his action figures.
This adventurous family lives each day to the fullest and loves spending time together, especially when they can get out on the trails. Whether it’s an easy stroll or a strenuous hike, they’re always up for a challenge! They've participated in the Autism Speaks Canada walks for several years now and have a brave voice for autism in their community, helping to raise awareness, understanding and acceptance of people with autism.
Learn more about the inspiring family in this Q&A with their Mom, Aisha.
At what age were your children diagnosed with autism?
Olivia was diagnosed at 18 months, Dorian at 16 months, and Brooklyn at the age of 9. Olivia was late to walking, wasn’t talking in typical range, Dorian was showing similar signs, and Brooklyn continues to have social conflict. We had professionals involved for quite some time before a diagnosis was made for each child.
How has autism affected your life?
Autism has made sensory processing difficult for my children. They get triggered often by the things we either don’t see or hear. However, this also keeps us parents more alert so we can transition the kids as smooth as possible. Society in general is a challenge but autism has made it a lot harder, especially with having three children diagnosed, but we continue to live every day to the fullest and we are grateful to god for giving us three wonderful children.
How does it make them unique, and help them excel?
Autism has made my children understand in a different type of way, and it has helped them excel academically. They have a photographic memory that helps them know sense of direction, locations, and so much more. Our children are so kind, loving, and brave, which has helped the process as well in a lot of good ways.
What struggles have you faced because of your autism?
Most of the struggles are due to lack of education on society’s part. People always want to judge you. Our children are very into routine so a lot of what others do in summer months for example aren’t things we can do at the same time.
How has your family supported you through your autism journey?
Our journey has been long but we are working towards getting our family more educated and help them understand. A lot of teaching moments for sure. But it’s a work in progress.
Has your life been impacted by Coronavirus? What are your some of your goals and hope for the future?
Yes, life has been impacted by Coronavirus. Therapies, extra curriculars, and doctors’ appointments have all been off and on, or done virtually. Routines have had to alter at times, but we continue to active and enjoy being together as a family.
What advice would you give to a young person, recently diagnosed with autism, wondering what the future holds for them?
We would tell them to continue being themselves, no two people are the same and autism is just being different, and that’s not a bad thing at all. Everyone is their own person regardless, so just embrace yourself.
What five words best describe you to the world?
Fun, friendly/kind, loving, ambitious, and brave
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Disclaimer: These are subjective opinions and real experiences of autistic people across Canada. Autism Speaks Canada does not provide medical or legal advice or services. Rather, Autism Speaks Canada provides general information about autism as a service to the community. The information provided on our website is not a recommendation, referral or endorsement of any resource, therapeutic method, or service provider and does not replace the advice of medical, legal or educational professionals. Autism Speaks Canada has not validated and is not responsible for any information, events, or services provided by third parties.