Halo Dance 4 Autism was created not only to support those who have Autism, but also to become a supportive community for the families of those who have Autism. We wanted to share this inspiring story of one such Mom and sister, Daileene and Melissa.
Melissa’s son David was diagnosed with Autism September 28th, 2020. Melissa was not initially familiar with her son’s diagnosis, and as many of us have felt, started going into a deep panic. However she quickly caught herself and did what was best for her family - began fighting to get her son the right help and treatments for him, and was soon able to provide him with ABA, Speech, and OT therapies. This of course, as many of us know, requires a large amount of time and dedication from Melissa. Seeing Melissa devote this time and take David to these therapy, Daileene (David’s older sister and Melissa’s daughter) has become quite familiar with David’s Autism diagnosis. But rather than letting that define him, Daileene chooses to see him as the individual that he is and recognizes his gifts - his positive energy, his happy disposition, and more.
Daileene decided to use her relationship with her brother as the inspiration to write her poem for her school assignment this past month, in honor of National Poetry Day. Daileene decided to create an acrostic poem, to represent what she feels is the stereotypical view of a person with Autism, but then what she feels truly represents her brother David whom she loves and adores. Daileene’s poem won the school-wide poetry competition at Corona Elementary, and has gone on to win second place at the district wide level in the Ontario-Montclair School District.
Melissa is extremely proud of her daughter and how she has handled becoming a helping presence and an older sister. Melissa says that everyday is something new that we are working with, but it is so helpful to have organizations like these to help us remember that we are not alone. Daileene says that she wrote the poem because she “wants people to see what we see, not just want they think Autism (or a person with it) is”. We are so proud of you Daileene, and can’t wait to see what the future holds for a brilliant writer like yourself!