Wednesday, August 10, 2016

My Time in Maryland (ICI Conference)

Me and Diego

Two weeks ago I attended ICI in Maryland. ICI means Institute on Communication and Inclusion. Making learning about autistic means to inclusion pleases me. I met Diego, his mom Edlyn, and his helper. It was fun hanging out. One of my favorite days was when I got to type with Michael and Camille. We typed about the ABCs of inclusion. Inclusion is so important. Elizabeth cared about our group and loved what we wrote. I am pleased she wanted to talk with me and held my keyboard even though she never met me before. She had confidence in me and her ability to talk with me.

Me and Elizabeth (practicing independence)

Good meaningful lectures peacefully made me take note of what I would like to achieve too, like doing a talk. I would also like the ability to type more independently. Lots of time and practice needs to be invested to get good. Part of my learning was getting to practice more stressful environments. I want to get better at sitting quietly and not being disruptive. I get mad at myself for being too noisy when stressed. Peace often escapes me in crowds and loud places. I was managing as best I could. Life day to day can be unpredictable. Sometimes I am in more control of my body. Other days I can hardly feel my body. It is the worst feeling to feel weightless. I hate being practically disembodied. It becomes a nightmare. Stimming helps feel my body again.

Part of a big drum circle

On day 1 I could not stay calm. I needed to stim badly to feel my body. Help came from Casey. She gave me a massage and sang to me. Casey saved my day. I sat more calmly after that. On day 2 I had my best day. I loved that I could participate and meet new friends. Making friends was the best part of the conference. I will remember talking to Diego, Michael, Camille, and Elizabeth as the highlight of the week.

Michael, Camille, and Me

ABC's of Inclusion
by Philip, Michael, and Camille

Actual inclusion opens doors.
Be patient with us. 
Caring people make it successful.    
Don't give up.
Excellent expectations. 
Friends, need I say more?    
Give us lots of patient encouragement.
Hear us when we spell. 
In day, talking to friends opens my world.      
Just like typically functioning,need support.
Keep believing in us. 
Learn challenging subjects. 
Must be proud.
No baby talk. 
Open hearts please us.       
Praise our achievements as they are yours as well.
Question your assumptions. 
Remember we are just like you.
Spelling is our way out.
Treat us with respect.  
Understand totally intelligent and eager to learn.
Voices must be heard.      
Wait for us to finish our thoughts. 
Xylophone can't make open words and it still is in the orchestra.
You are needed for our success. 
Zero tolerance for non believers.


  1. Philip, this is beautiful! Thank you for sharing this with us. I am a believer!

  2. It was nice to see you there.. I know it's a very busy space, with lots going on, but so very happy to hear that it was helpful AND enjoyable, too, Philip!