I have been amazed at the outpouring of support for the film since the premiere in Burlington and the screening of the film at the “Making Communication Happen Worldwide” conference. I am so happy that we are having an impact on the world and changing attitudes. I have noticed changes in my own community today. For example, I walked at the mall today and noticed people connecting with my friends who are unable to express themselves in the conventional ways that society is accustomed. Only ten years ago, we were present but not spoken to as valued members of society. I also noticed, when mentoring my student at Williamstown High School today, that other kids came and spoke to her without prejudice. I notice these subtle changes in the next generation. I have much faith that soon children will be well educated no matter what diagnosis or label they may have been given. I have dreamed that I would move the mountains that have been built up by generations of ignorance and lack of information. I know there are a lot more walls to break down. Together, we will make this social movement happen. Like Larry said, “Let’s make a big step for humankind.”
I had the wonderful opportunity to meet with two students at Spaulding High School this morning. What a change there has been since my school days. There is knowledge there being used to educate all students, not just the speaking students but those brilliant minds that are locked in uncooperative bodies waiting to be set free. I am pleased that I am able to return to the high school that needed knowledge and be a part of educating teachers, parents and educators. I feel proud to be a part of this positive change. Together, Larry and I opened minds of professionals in the Mental Health field. Can you imagine what we can do for those folks who have no personal experience with communicating in alternative ways?
I do not know what the future holds but I know it is brighter with the ability to connect with others. Over the past week something inside of me came to know love in a way I never imagined. This is very personal but I will say that I am head over heels and it could not have happened without the ability to reach out through an alternative mode of communication. Two people know love because of the work of pioneers in communication and inclusion. I would like to thank Harvey and Pascal for giving so much of themselves so Larry and I can pursue our dreams and find friends in the world. The past week has opened my heart in unimaginable ways. I find such humor in Larry and such fondness for Chammi, Henna, Antii and Naoki since getting to know them through the making of this film. It is my hope to continue to grow our relationships and to reconnect for the writing of our manifesto.
I will see you in Denver, Colorado next.