Friday, May 12, 2000    


Cailean's story

By:mum2three, Whitecourt, Alberta Canada

Scrapbooking and dMarie has opened many doors for me, bringing me new friends and an increase in self-worth. That is another story, let's talk about my son Cailean. Many of you have read the article in Memory Makers (jan 99) about his story.

Cailean ( pronounced KA-lan) was born with autism. a very debilitating brain disorder. He has problems with communication and with emotions. He has a lot of unusual behaviors that stem from his lack of understanding of his environment. It is a very chaotic world for him. School is no exception.

This is where scrapbooking opened his world. He can not change the way he is but through a scrapbook I was able to change the way his classmates perceive him. He came from being the outcast to being Mr. Popularity. All the girls want to be with Cailean.. This constant onslaught of affection and attention has brought the most out of this young boy. He has gained an understanding of peers and strives to be like them. He insists on doing what his classmates do, even the same number of words on his spelling tests. He will take no shortcuts. I can only thank the art of scrapbooking for his successes in school. I truly believe that without his scrapbook the children would have never warmed up to him in the fashion that they have.

Other parents have followed my lead and also made scrapbooks explaining their child's behavior, be it autism, down's syndrome or whatever. They also saw a change in the classmates. It is almost like saying, yes this child is different but that is okay.

Tomorrow at dMarie Daily: The Obsession, by By Amy W. , Sioux Falls,SD

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