Letter from Listener Buffy

Justus enjoying the horse camp.

Autism Radio,

I want to thank you for sponsoring my son Justus at horse camp this past week. My son has extreme sensory problems. He is moving constantly. He has never one time sat through a meal at the dinner table. He needs constant movement. I read some kids with autism have problems with their vestibular system which contributes to balance and the sense of spacial orientation and  their proprioception is the sense of how your own limbs are oriented in space. These things can cause the child to behave like Justus. Some children with autism have difficulty sleeping because they feel like they are falling in space and some have been known to fall out of their desk at school.

I read that horses can help children with autism in many positive ways. Any Activity that causes your body to balance itself and continue to rebalance during that activity will open up the learning receptors in the brain. Riding horses will do this.This is an ideal time to read to the child or go over spelling words. My son has some horse experience, but in small doses. I thought about how fun it would be to just spend time with the horses...not just riding, but learning more about them. I signed my son up for Horse camp with the help and support from Autism Radio.

My son had a good time at camp making bird feeders,scavenger hunts,painted and decorated a lucky horse shoe and many other crafts. Justus learned how to groom the horse by washing and brushing the horses.They rode on trails and just enjoyed being in the presense of the horses. The advantage these horses gave to my son beside the sensory benefits was his self esteem and self worth. He was proud to command the horse using their color coded reins. He thought he was a cowboy like Woody from Toy Story.

I always push my son to try things...to get out of that comfort zone to expereience life little wonders..He loved the horses!

Thank you again for everything.

Sincerely,

Buffy T.