I always get excited when I see individuals on the Autism Spectrum (or living with various levels of ability) represented in the media. It gives people who may not have the opportunity to work with these individuals daily, to have a little insight on what life may be like for them or their caregivers while hopefully highlighting how their brains work so wonderfully different from ours.
I couldn’t contain myself recently when I came across two Pixar shorts that allow you to see through the eyes of two characters that I found close to my heart. Here’s a run down of what I love so much about both. I highly recommend that you check it out (and maybe try to watch it every day like I do…unless that’s excessive….).
Short #1: Float (Disney Plus under Pixar/Sparkshorts)
This short is not explicitly related to individuals with special needs, nor do I know if that was the original intention BUT as I always seem to do, I found a way to connect the dots to something near and dear to my heart. This short is a wonderful representation of a parent raising a child who is a little bit different than the other children they encounter. I love the way they display their troubles in a way that allows us to watch the parent attempt to navigate the situation the best way he knows how.
It’s a tear jerker, at least for me…but that’s not saying much.
Short #2: Loop (Disney Plus under Pixar/Sparkshorts)
My personal favourite. This short has warmed my heart for the last four days and deserves to be seen by everybody everywhere. What I love most about this depiction is that the main character is non-verbal… and is also a young adult. Often times, being non-verbal is assumed to be something that you will grow out of, something that can be magically taken away with a little Speech & Language Therapy and wishful thinking…and in a wonderful world, this would be the case. But for many families, non-verbal communication is something that will be a lifelong necessity. The most important thing to remember about individuals who communicate non-verbally is that just because they cannot speak, does not mean they have nothing to say.
If you are fortunate enough to get a spare moment, consider taking less than 20 minutes to watch these clips and gain insight from a new perspective.
Let me know what you think in the comments or on Instagram @inclusiveinspirations!