This journey begins with a mother’s love for her daughter. After learning her daughter was on the Autism Spectrum Tami began to tirelessly educate herself in the sciences of: Behavioral Health, Child Psychology, Human Anatomy, Occupational Health, Pharmacology and Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork and has been a parent advocate for her daughter since 1997.
In 2002, as her knowledge and passion grew, Tami began reaching out to other families in need of help. In 2005, Tami founded the Rock County Autism Support Group and she is the community resource liaison for the SPD (Sensory Processing Disorders) Parent Connections Support Group of Rock County and the surrounding areas. Since 2005, Tami has been State and National Certified in Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork and in 2013 she certified in CranioSacral Therapy with the Upledger Institute in Florida.
Tami currently has two offices where she facilitates CranioSacral Therapy. Approximately 38% of her clientele are children, teenagers and young adults on the Autism Spectrum or with other neuro-developmental delays. When asked to lecture, Tami uses her personal experience, extensive knowledge, and dedication to help others learn about and understand the medical and educational aspects of Autism, Autism Spectrum Disorders and SPD.
What inspired you to write your first book?
What inspired me to write the book was the degree of Heather’s recovery and the encouragement from her occupational therapist to share it for other parents.
What books have influenced your life the most?
Not one particular book inspired me, but I was greatly inspired by books. As a kid I read all the time, classics to contemporary. I love to get lost in a good book whether It’s fiction, non-fiction, romance, mystery, intrigue., etc a good book you just get lost in the story.
What are your current projects?
My current project is writing a continuing education curriculum for massage therapists and bodyworkers interested in working with child on the autism spectrum.
If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
I don’t think I would change anything. It’s a tough story, it’s a typical story for our kids, its information that had to be spoken in a way a parent with a child with autism can understand the implications for their child and make their journey easier. That’s why I added the tips to help through the obstacles in the medical and educational domain. Autism is about being proactive so you don’t have to be reactive. Parent that have been through the journey are uniquely aware of some challenges that effect our child. Parents can then plan accordingly and circumvent the fall out behavior from their child.
What has been the toughest criticism given to you as an author?
Though the reviewer said she understood why I wrote it she felt some of the educational piece reads like a laundry list of complaints. I want readers to understand the urgency and importance of that information and the impact of the lack of concern for Heather’s well-being. Getting information regarding details of the individual classrooms and common area environments are crucial to help teach a child how and what stimulation needs to be done to balance their system. Failure to get that information hurts them medically and can be the difference between functioning recovery or not. I felt the reviewer criticized my reaction to the chain of events. If you’re not a parent going through it, you can’t fully understand.
What has been the best compliment?
The best compliment I’ve received is how amazed people are that I persevered! Looking back I don’t know how I did it, but going through it I couldn’t stop myself. I kept pushing along, reading, seminars, the day to day routine, therapies’, research and school meetings because how do you give up on your child?
Do you have any advice to give to aspiring writers?
To aspiring writers I say write what you know, in your heart in your imagination in your mind, just write.
What is your favorite quality about yourself?
My favorite quality is my compassion.
What is your least favorite quality about yourself?
My least favorite quality is my impatience.
Is there anything else you would like to share?
I’d like to share that we need to make drastic changes to how we educate our children. One in 50 children fall on the autism spectrum and our schools are not prepared.