I write essays, reported articles, humor, and op-eds.

Thank You for Calling Divided Health!

A not-entirely-fictional interaction with a beloved insurance rep.

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GarageBand Changed How My Autistic Son Interacts With The World.

Long gone are the days when I viewed technology as an opposing force that detracted from my child’s learning and growth.

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Mom’s Summer Break Pandora Playlist: The Descent

Is July always this long? Why did we think working from home was a viable option?

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No I in team.

When our baby was born, my husband and I were panicked islands, but when our son received an autism diagnosis, we had to become a team.

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My kids began to thrive the minute I stopped scheduling them.

For us, life is so much more fun this way.

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Six Summertime Childcare Options for Working Parents

A satirical look at the challenges of summer.

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Finding the Right College for a Student with ASD

For students on the autism spectrum, college can be a time of social anxiety and overwhelming choices.

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Powering Up

A working mom’s morning with three kids with special needs.

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Three Births

Because every birth is sacred and hard. However our babies arrive, we did it just right.

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How ADHD, Anxiety, and Other Disorders can Mask Autism Spectrum Disorder

It’s a complicated path for parents, doctors, and educators, but even more so for our kids. In this article, we’ll examine some of the most common comorbid disorders and illnesses that impact our autistic children.

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Lies We Tell Our Children: Gerbil Edition

We are a pet-obsessed house. We’ve owned dogs, hermit crabs, a Betta, and our fair share of rodents. We once had two delightful gerbil sisters, one white and one black. My middle daughter, six at the time, named them Puffy and Bob.

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Students With Disabilities Deserve Inclusion. It’s Also the Best Way to Teach.

Students with disabilities face substantially increased rates of abuse and restraint in schools. As an education and disability advocate seeking to change that, I frequently encounter well-meaning arguments for separating higher-needs students from the general population.

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I Love Parenting my Autistic Tween

It’s 5 AM, and my 11-year-old son is standing at my bedside, shaking me awake. He needs to tell me about something he learned in science class yesterday. Not related, but also very important, he wants to read me a section of the novel he is writing.

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Restraining Students with Disabilities is Harmful

As an education and disability advocate, I work with many parents who have kids on the spectrum or who struggle with other disabilities that are not always visible. Many of these disabilities involve behaviors that are expressions of anxiety or depression but that present in confusing, easily-misinterpreted ways. For educators, and even doctors, this frequently leads to a behavior-driven response.

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20 Fun Outings for Kids with Special Needs

There are many family-friendly spots in and around Arlington, but the choices become more complicated when you have children with special needs. Where can you go for an afternoon of fun when your party includes kids with mobility impairments, sensory challenges or who have a tendency to run off? Parents of special needs children know that crowds, noise, lighting and bathrooms can be an issue. So can staff who don’t have experience interacting with visitors of all abilities. As one of those parents, I have spent a fair amount of time scouting out things to do with my kids—ages 5, 9, and 11. Here are some of our favorite places, with a few pointers for making the most of each excursion.

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How To Rekindle Love After Kids? Try Fresh Limes.

The green metal lime press was a luxurious wedding gift from my husband’s best man. I had never heard of such a thing before scrolling through the registry options. But I loved to bake and my fiancé’s favorite dessert was key lime pie. I’d create marital bliss in pastry form, a foundation of our relationship in the balance of sweet and sour.

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I Didn’t Think My Grumpy Dad Would Like Living With His Grandkids — Until I Saw Him Bond With My Autistic Son

When my husband and I first discussed moving into my parents’ home, my 71-year-old father was less than enthusiastic about the idea. My parents no longer needed (or were able to care for) such a large home. As they got older, I wanted to be able to cook for them and help around the house. My mother did not want to live in a retirement community, but my father wanted privacy and time to relax in his retirement — and my three kids have never been quiet, respectful of closed doors, or good at taking it easy.

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When Autism Isn’t Typical

“Your son is such a rude boy!”

The assistant principal at my son’s school spoke loudly, her voice piercing through the phone. I found out later that my five-year-old was hiding under her desk, punching himself in the forehead, melting down in pure terror.

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An Open Letter To My Autistic Son’s Teacher

When we met, I was the angry, hovering mom you dreaded interacting with. Emails, phone calls, in-person meetings ― your lips tightened before forcing a smile. You knew moms like me and children like mine. When my son ran from the classroom, you’d roll your eyes. When he’d pace in the back of the room, you’d shush his muttering.

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Looking for signs that my child will be okay after a psychiatric hospitalization

I zip up his suitcase and take it out to the car, reminding myself to pack Crocs instead of his lace-up running shoes. I run back in to find the old iPod, the one with no camera, and realize I never downloaded the Eminem albums he loves so much. All the songs on here will seem babyish. He will listen to them tonight and wish for something different.

Both of us will.

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Something Magical Happened When My Autistic 10-Year-Old Started Listening To Eminem

My 10-year-old son starts to rap after someone on YouTube says Eminem is autistic.

“I don’t know if Eminem is autistic or not,” I tell him. “YouTube says lots of things.”

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This is Inclusion

My son gets off the school bus into a crowd of students. Kids run in every direction, yelling and laughing, and he chirps nervously in response. His fingers do a quick stim—a fluttering motion in front of his mouth, as if he is playing an invisible trumpet. He takes a deep breath and wades into the stream of activity.

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