What Does It Mean to Collaborate and Autism Acceptance
My Thoughts on it’s meaning, community and collaboration!
What does the word collaborate mean to you? Without looking in the dictionary, can you pick out a meaning?
Merriam Webster defines collaborate as “working jointly with others or together, especially in an intellectual endeavour.” To this I may also add to a worthwhile cause, community or in sharing a worthwhile message. It is what I am learning about now in embracing the role of advocate and through connecting with others that collaboration is truly about working with others towards the bigger cause, bigger than the numbers or your blog or followers; it’s connecting with those in your community to help and support them anyway we can. This year for Autism Acceptance month (yes we are very much determined to change this as a community too) I was honoured to work with a few wonderful advocates online in their projects for this month’s important theme of Acceptance.
Acceptance in the way that we as individuals are already know of our differences and are working to accept those ourselves. It’s an acceptance in that we’ve entered this month bravely as Autistic individuals and are bracing for all that may come as we continue to do our best and simply show up or share our experiences in the hopes of helping others and showing one another that we nor they are alone in this. It’s working towards understanding together because it just seems easier when there are others doing the same thing as you, with you and on your side. It just is.
Realizing this has helped me see that there is room for us all to work together and share our very unique and individual
experiences, if we feel comfortable doing so. Not everyone is or will be and that’s okay. I also accept and honour that we each may be a different place, and in different mental spaces during this time. There were many Aprils I wasn’t ready, but now through connecting with the community and participating in two wonderful collaborations I have better come to understand what it truly means to be part of a community and that is by being a part of something bigger than ourselves while connecting with others, sharing our voices, supporting one another and contributing, we as a collective can make a true difference greater than one.
It is something I had forgotten recently, perhaps too busy in wanting the blog to grow or reach more people but am glad to have been inspired to remember because it’s brought me back to what’s really important and that’s making a difference. It is what drives me the most to continue sharing what I can and why I am truly grateful for the #ActuallyAutistic community and all those who have supported me on this mission, encouraged me to keep going and inspired me to be open.
So thank-you all for doing your thing, allowing me to do mine and the opportunities to collaborate and connect with you.