Autism is developmental disorder that appears in the first 3 years of life, and affects the brain's normal development.
Autism is a physical condition linked to abnormal biology and chemistry in the brain.
Autism is bell-curves, splinter skills, behaviors and variability and abnormality.
Autism is tantrums, disrupted sleep, anxiety and fear.
Autism is a range of complex neurodevelopment disorders, characterized by social impairments, communication difficulties, and restricted, repetitive, and stereotyped patterns of behavior.
Autism is consuming, complex, scary and confusing.
But Autism is not Esme.
Esme is triumphant.
Esme is joy.
Esme is silly.
Esme is a daughter, a sister, a granddaughter, a cousin, a friend.
She is our love, our pride, our joy, our hero.
Esme is not a tragedy. She does not need your pity or sorrow. She needs your understanding. Esme lives with autism, but she is not autism.
See the difference?