My name is Esther. I’m 12 years old and I live in Edgware, London, England. I have something called autism.

Hi beautiful diary. I am so lucky that I randomly found you. My name is Esther. I’m 12 years old and I live in Edgware London England.

My name has several meanings. Esther is also Hadassah which means myrtle. It makes sense considering my favorite colors are green and blue. It also means hidden.

I have something called autism. Autism is actually a “hidden” diagnosis so I do have a connection with my name!

From the start I’ve always been a bit weird at times. I could see that.

It all started in 2007 my “unlucky” year. I would only wear brown and you’d have to drive me around my school at least four times just to get me into school. And you know something? I still have no idea why I did it.

That’s when my parents took me to a doctor. (I don’t remember exactly what kind but my parents told me it was someone who specializes in autism.) However I was a little nervous to go because I’m afraid of doctors. They diagnosed me with autism as soon as we got in! The doctor was nice and asked my parents a lot of questions. He had a fan in his room and that kept me busy. I was fascinated watching it turn and turn.

My parents told me they saw that something was different about me. I didn’t like to look anyone in the eye I was scared of loud noises and I repeated words and phrases. But they told me I am special and fun and full of energy.

I guess you could say I’m a tomboy. I’m sporty and like running and climbing. I don’t mind flowers though. They’re pretty.

My parents own a farm. We have five horses and sixty hens that give us eggs. (I’m not able to have eggs as I’m allergic and we sell most of them.) We have bees and we sell their honey around Rosh Hashanah.

We also recently brought two cats called Bubbles and Ninja. They live in a barn where we keep the hay. We use them to catch rats that have been stealing our eggs. I love riding the horses. It is like therapy for me. It helps me be more relaxed and calm and makes me feel good.

I play tennis a lot. I want to teach children to play it for charity. I go to a tennis club during the Pesach holidays and in the summer.

When you’re autistic (what people with autism are called) you feel sad moments easily. I remember my worst moment of my life was when my granddad died of cancer in 2014. I was so sad that I cried and cried. So from that day on I started to think about charities a lot.

Another tough time was when we had to move house so my grandma could live with us. You see, she's disabled so she can't walk. Well she can but she can't get down the stairs. We needed a bigger house so she could live with us. Grandad used to help her but when he died, she had to move all the way from Essex.

As I would get bullied when I was in primary.  It's all fine though now.  I just ignored it and eventually they stopped.

I'm sharing this because many people put us autistics down. But we want to dream. I want be an author and make people happy. I want to sing and make up songs which is what I do, every day. I want to write poetry and help the homeless. I have lots of hopes and dreams.

Remember just because you're different inside, it doesn't mean we can't do anything. I hope one day 10 million children from across the country learn this and help protect others.

That's my story. I hope I can share it with you so people can understand autistics.


Tip for Life:

Now that you learned a bit about autism you will realize that some of the weird behaviors you might see in someone who has autism is due to the fact that the brain is wired differently.


Autism is also known as autism spectrum disorder. This happens when the brain develops differently.  There are many different types of autism ranging from mild to severe. Kids who have autism spectrum disorder may have difficulties in interacting with other people, communicating, understanding other people’s reactions and feelings, using their imagination and repetitive behaviors.  These kids might also have a very hard time with change or overreact to loud noises.

Our brain helps us use all of our senses to understand what we see, hear, touch, taste and smell. When someone’s brain has a difficult time interpreting these things it can cause difficulties with understanding, playing, learning, listening and talking.

Kids with autism for example, might have a hard time connecting something that comes easily to other kids.  For example, if someone is smiling or really sad you can understand that he is feeling happy or sad.  Someone with autism might not understand what that person is feeling.  We call this not understanding social cues.  These kids might act in a way that is unusual and others might not really understand what they are doing.  They might come across as weird or mean, when in fact they cannot interpret the meaning of what is going on.

No one knows what causes autism.  Sometimes it does run in families and other times it does not.  There is also no known cure for autism.  Many times these kids go for therapy to a speech therapist, occupational therapist, and psychologist to help them communicate better and learn social skills to make and keep friends

(Originally featured in Junior, Issue 619)