The Centers for Disease Control says that one in 68 children are born somewhere on the autism spectrum. One mom in Palm Harbor has made it her mission to help her daughter tell her unique story with the disease in hopes of helping others dealing with the same thing.
A year ago, nine-year-old Thomais Moshopoulos could barely put a sentence together. Now, she’s not only reading, but reading, a book she wrote.
“She has specific skills and I am taking advantage of those skills,” said her mother, Yadira Calderon.
Calderon says this has been a long road to this point though. She says the writing and drawing have been therapeutic for her daughter.
When Thomais was two, her mother says it was like she was unplugged. She couldn’t talk, pay attention and easy tasks were difficult. At the time, Calderon had no idea her daughter had autism. To that point, she had been mentally on track for her age.
Calderon says he daughter’s diagnosis doesn’t define her. She said it’s more about learning a different way to communicate.
“In my case, the books, her writing, her stories and her creativity are what I keep pushing her [to do],” said Calderon.
Calderon also looks to inspire other families who have a child who has autism through her website AutismHappyKingdom.com. Thomais’ books are available on the website as well for download.
Thomais will be reading her book to the public at the Palm Harbor Library at 2330 Nebraska Avenue, Palm Harbor on Saturday, November 18 at 11 a.m.