This blog post is written by Sharon of Rochester, NY. Her nephew’s son has autism and she has decided to honor him and his parents by including Autism Speaks in her will.
I am an Aunt of several nieces and nephews, including one who has a child with autism. I have such a love for children. I can’t do enough for them. Unfortunately at a very young age, I found out I couldn’t have children. So when children come into my life, I am very touched by them and cherish our time together.
In September of 2008, I was diagnosed with Lymphoma. Never in a million years did I ever expect this news on a sunny Sunday afternoon. Not knowing what my future held for me, I decided to get my things in order, meaning my will and what my wishes would be if I were ever to pass. I feel everyone should have something in place for the future no matter what, so that your wishes are met.
Given that I do not have children of my own, I put some serious thought into who to leave my inheritance to in my will. Finally, I decided, let me contribute a percentage of it to Autism Speaks. I have been touched by several children with autism and was always amazed at how gifted they can be. A young gentleman from my church congregation is a senior in high school this year and will be going on to a local elite music school for college. It just totally amazes me. My nephew’s son who just turned 7 was diagnosed with autism at an early age. I was so moved in how my nephew jumped in and got involved with Autism Speaks. They started doing the yearly walks and they came up with a team name called “Sage’s Unit.” They rally a huge team to do the walk every year. Sage loves to draw and my nephew says that one of the things he is best at currently is golf. AMAZING! Sage’s parents try to keep his life as normal as possible. He is involved in lots of activities outside of the home. He is doing really well in school and loves it. I am very moved by all of their accomplishments and the support they receive from other families who have children with autism.
I realized that one way I can make a difference for Sage and my nephew is by adding Autism Speaks into my will in their honor. This way, I know there will continue to be research on autism to help Sage as he gets older.
My favorite saying for my nieces and nephews is:
Nieces and Nephew are the Children that we Borrow,
Intending not to raise but merely love,
Ever watchful from our open window,
Caring deeply at a slight remove.
Everywhere you go, my love will follow,
Still part of you wherever you may live.
I know whether I am fortunate enough to live out my life or become an angel in heaven, they will always be cared for by my donations.
If you have put Autism Speaks in your will or would like to learn more about doing so, we hope to hear from you. Please contact Christine Pecorella at 646-843-6676 or Christine.firstname.lastname@example.org.