Wednesday is Autism Awareness Day, and awareness for the diagnosis will continue through the end of April. 

Fortunately, autism awareness has grown exponentially during the past few years. But strangely, as many people strive to understand the diagnosis, some autistic people are not being recognized.

Many associate autism with those who are savants or who have Asperger’s. Autism, however, is a spectrum disorder, but not everyone who has ASD is as talented as Temple Grandin and "Rain Man." There is high-functioning and high-maintenance, and the distinction between the two should be acknowledged during the month of April. Also, autism should not be considered a synonym for “quirky.”

Autism Speaks, an organization that spreads autism awareness, asks that buildings around the world be lit up blue to raise autism awareness in April.

Listed below are inspiring quotes for autism, courtesy of Parade and Brainy Quote:

1. “Even for parents of children that are not on the spectrum, there is no such thing as a normal child.”

—Violet Stevens, mom of a son with autism

2. “Hope is the greatest thing for moms of autism. Hope is what gets us out of bed in the morning. I’m on a mission to tell parents that there is a way.”

—Jenny McCarthy

3. “Autism does exist on a spectrum, and there are so many manifestations of it, so many kind of expressions of it. And every case is particular.”

—Claire Danes

4. “If they can’t learn the way we teach, we teach the way they learn.”

―Dr. O. Ivar Lovaas of the Lovaas Institute

5. “Autism is part of my child, it’s not everything he is. My child is so much more than a diagnosis.”

―S.L. Coelho, author

6. “The important thing is to bring people with Parkinson’s into our world and for the public to have a real understanding of it, as they’ve beginning to have with autism.”

—Helen Mirren

7. “I see people with Asperger’s syndrome as a bright thread in the rich tapestry of life.”

—Tony Attwood, author of The Complete Guide to Asperger’s Syndrome

8. “I am different, not less.”

—Temple Grandin, animal behavior expert and author of The Autistic Brain

9. “I look at autism like a bus accident, you don’t become cured from a bus accident, but you can recover.”

—Jenny McCarthy

10. “There’s a saying within the Asperger community: if you’ve met one person with Asperger’s syndrome, you’ve met one person with Asperger’s syndrome … Within this condition, beneath this label, the variety of personality, of humor, of behavior, is infinite.”

—Hugh Dancy, star of the 2009 film about a man with Asperger’s syndrome, Adam

11. “Autists are the ultimate square pegs, and the problem with pounding a square peg into a round hole is not that the hammering is hard work. It’s that you’re destroying the peg.”

―Paul Collins, author

12. “If people take the time to get to know kids like [my son] Davis, they’ll see that they have so much to offer the community and the world. They’re not unproductive.”

—Lisa Pauley, mom of a son with autism

13. “If I could snap my fingers and be nonautistic, I would not. Autism is part of what I am.”

—Temple Grandin

14. “Don’t think that there’s a different, better child ‘hiding’ behind the autism. This is your child. Love the child in front of you. Encourage his strengths, celebrate his quirks, and improve his weaknesses, the way you would with any child.”

—Claire Scovell LaZebnik, author of Growing Up on the Spectrum

15. “I’ve learned that every human being, with or without disabilities, needs to strive to do their best, and by striving for happiness you will arrive at happiness. For us, you see, having autism is normal—so we can’t know for sure what your ‘normal’ is even like. But so long as we can learn to love ourselves, I’m not sure how much it matters whether we’re normal or autistic.”

—Naoki Higashida, author of The Reason I Jump

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