My Name is Kerry and I have PDD-NOS
This guest post is by Autism Speaks staffer Kerry Magro. Kerry, an adult who has autism, is a rising senior at Seton Hall University, majoring in Sports Management. He started the club Student Disability Awareness on campus to help spread awareness and raise funds for those affected by autism. Autism Speaks U is a program designed for college students who host awareness, advocacy and fundraising events, while supporting their local autism communities.
My name is Kerry and I have Pervasive Developmental Disorder- Not Otherwise Specified.
This means I have autism.
This does not mean I am autism.
This means I see the world sometimes in a different light.
This does not mean I’m in the dark.
This means from time to time I may have a difficulty expressing my emotions.
This does not mean I don’t feel.
This means when I communicate, I do it with a style that is my own.
This does not mean I don’t have a voice.
This means I may have sensitivity when it comes to a certain feel or touch.
This means sounds can sometimes make me feel uneasy.
This does not mean I’m deaf or hard of hearing.
This means I can often focus on certain interests for a long period of time.
This does not mean those are my only interests.
This means that I’m the only person in my family to have this.
This does not mean I’m alone.
This means I may have 500 other symptoms/capabilities that are different than yours.
This does not mean I’m any less of a person than you are.
My name is Kerry, and regardless of what PDD-NOS means or doesn’t mean, autism can’t define me, I define autism. I can only hope those individuals, regardless of being autistic or not can define their lives and their journeys in the way they see it.
*I wrote this about 6 months ago with my eyes closed and with an open heart. I believe we all need something; a symbol in some cases, to remind us of who we are and what we are striving to be. This is one article that has helped me immensely. I plan on sharing this article with my school for World Autism Awareness Day along with an Autism Society of America Conference this Summer. You can also find this article here. Thank you.*