HT took the kids to the Great Lakes Science Center and came home with these photos.
Of course upon seeing Riley in a space suit I thought of Temple Grandin’s quote. The one where she refers to NASA as “the largest sheltered workshop in the world.”
I have a love/hate relationship with quotes like that.
Love. I love the idea Riley could work at NASA or any other place she wants to, hold a job, live independently, make good money, etc.
Hate. I hate when people minimize the challenges of those with Asperger’s. Oh they’re just a little quirky, no big deal. Ha, ha. Not that Temple Grandin generally minimizes, but that kind of quote sweeps under the rug how truly debilitating Asperger’s is for many.
It’s more than just being “quirky.” It’s so much more. And that pretty much explains Riley. She is more of a challenge, but she’s also more in a good way too.
Example: No one can touch her in kindness.
One day we were out for a walk, and she was complaining about something she couldn’t do. I can’t even remember what, and I talked to her about the kindness she possesses.
“Riley do you know how many people come to see spiritual teachers, pay good money to hear them speak, they themselves striving to find the kindness and compassion in their hearts that is already right there, out in the open, in you?”
We walked silently for a while as she thought about this.
Finally she smiled at me,
“Maybe I’ll be a wisdom teacher,” she said.
“Maybe you will be,” I said.
Far as I know, most ten year olds aren’t considering “wisdom teacher” as career choices.
“Has not missed a day of wisdom teaching since June of 2000.”
That will look good on a resume.’
NASA would be lucky to have her.