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Thursday, June 24, 2010

Autism, an Interview.

Earlier this year I befriended a young man in Australia named Scott. He got in touch with us through Running for Pearl as he was keen to see what we are all about. Since then he has become a friend and a source of great pride to me, even though we have never met face to face. Scott is Autistic and instead of me rambling on as usual I decided it was time someone from the Spectrum had their say. So I sent him a bunch of questions and below is what he sent back. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I did, putting it together was definitely one of the greatest moments I have had on this blog to date. Take it away Scotty.

(Scott Woolfe)

Me: Scott, tell me a little bit about yourself mate!

Scott: My name is Scott Woolfe and I live in a little town called Alstonville in northern New South Wales, Australia. I still live at home with my family and I have been working on and off as a pastry chef for the past few years. Some of my hobbies and interests are juggling, I can juggle four balls, four rings and am currently working on other forms of juggling too. I have also taught myself circus skills in broad areas of talent. Teaching myself to unicycle.

(rolla bolla)

(clown work)

When did you realise that you were different from normal kids?

It's not that I started to realise I was different from all the other kids, I knew I was different from everyone else and didn't know why. Not really having friends at school and spending time alone was a bit hard yes, but its a good thing. I have been in relationships over the past five years, having problems here, there and everywhere. I have learned to go at everything myself and not rely on anybody.
I have had some personal problems with people over the last few years. Not having friends I find is good as I am back in my comfort zone with my own company. I can watch DVDs, I can do the things I WANT and don't have to listen to anyone else.

How was school for you growing up?

I am a lot smarter now than I was back in primary school. I have learned things where people say "How did you that, where did you learn that..." and shocked a few people in the meantime.
At school I had a teacher who was basically telling me he would do half my work to make it easier for me. But I have been a pastry chef baker and I have taught about 400 kids how to make scones, I have taught 120 students how to bake bread. So to that teacher I say "I DID IT, I CAN BAKE AND I CAN SHOW YOU UP".
People "diss" Autistic people. But we can do things that "normal" people can't. When someone asks why you are trying to do certain thing, thinking whether it's a good or bad idea, this is what they need to think of first..... "This person has thought about this idea and if they want to try it out, let them, you need to support them even if you think its not a good idea" If they think its a bad and try to stop me I feel like they are 150% against me.
So support people with disabilities and show them that their dreams can be realised and that you are behind them all the way.

You have done some pretty amazing things in your life, tell me about some of these achievements.

I am a keen walker and have walked for 24 hours non-stop on two occasions, which is about85 km's.

I have also walked 18 hours non-stop four times.

I participate in the relay for life run by the Cancer Council. I have participated in Ballina and Lismore for the past five years and completed twelve relays and aim to do twenty more, I don't want to miss one.

I have run with the Queens batton relay for the Commonwealth Games in Lismore, 2006.

(Commonwealth Relay 2006)

What are the biggest obstacles facing people with Autism today?

No support, there is NOT enough support out there for people with Autism. When support does come maybe people with Autism can lead better lives.

Who, or what inspires you?

Jack Bauer from 24
Sgt. Major Jonas "Snake Doc" Blane from the Unit
Dr Karl Kruszelnicki

Jack Bauer is a man who works non stop tracking down threats and problems. He holds up the law and sorts things out. Being Jack Bauer means you can push your barriers and complete jobs and feel safe.

Autism is a battle, like Jonas Blane going to fight as a Sgt. Major in "The Unit". I believe most families are like "The Unit". They do all the things possible and impossible for their son or daughter, wife or husband who has Autism and fight on and on. These are the true people who live in "The Unit" and if we can bond with other "Units" we can be strong and defeat Autism. As the Snake Doc would say "How about that!"

Dr Karl is a medical scientist and one of the big guns, having a wealth of knowledge he shares it with the Australian community.

Where do you see yourself in 10-15 years time?

I am hoping to complete twenty relays without missing one
I am hoping to walk eighteen hours again at my 20th relay
I am hoping to be Jack Bauer
I am hoping to be Dr Karl
But most of all I am hoping to be ME.

What do you say to the parents of children with Autism?

Let your kids take hold of things they love, let your kids be who they want to be, not what everyone else expects them to be.

There you have it friends, I must add that there was little or no editing to be done by me. Scott sent me the photos and the layout is pretty much the way I got it. If anyone would like to get in touch with Scott he has asked me to add his e-mail address. It's and feel free to mail him or add him up on facebook. I find Scott to be a really positive example of what you can achieve with your life, Autistic or not. Thanks Scott.

See you round the bend.


1 comment:

  1. He isn't what he makes out to be, while it is sad that he suffers from autism and he cant help certain things, he has taken his disability to manipulate other people and used them, he is very inconsiderate person and expects other people to pick up the slack, now all this isn't fair for what you call normal people


I would love to hear your comments and feedback so take it away......

Running for Pearl

This blog is dedicated to my daughter Pearl who was diagnosed with ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) in August 2009. My goal is to raise funds and awareness by doing what I love....Running.