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Adventures in Autism

Author: Megan Carranza

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Welcome to Adventures in Autism! This podcast was created as a safe place to come together and share our journeys with autism.

Host, Megan Carranza, shares her family’s experience with her son, Logan, and speaks with a variety of incredible guests. From fellow autism parents, to siblings, to experts in the field and individuals on the spectrum themselves! It’s all about support and finding a sense of community. These are people who just “get it”.

If you’re familiar with autism, then you know everyday is an adventure, you’ll hear all about those adventures here! Thanks for listening!
117 Episodes
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Today I’m chatting with powerhouse autism mom, and president of the Autism Hero Project, Tamika Lecheé Morales. Tamika was my guest way back on episode 9 of AIA and I am thrilled to bring her back on today! Since we recorded that episode over two years ago, so much has changed. Not only has her nonprofit, Autism Hero Project, blown up and done absolutely incredible things for the autism community, but Tamika and I have actually become very close friends. Today we’re talking about updates in her life regarding her incredible son, Maximilian, (aka Legend...listen to the episode to find out how that became his nickname!) as well as all the amazing things she’s working on with AHP. Tamika is also an author and she’s sharing a recently published story in the episode that is so moving and beautiful, it’s a must listen! I am so proud to support AHP and Tamika. We had a blast during this conversation and I hope you enjoy listening! Connect with Tamika: autismheroproject.org Facebook: The Autism Hero Project Instagram: @autismheroproject YouTube: Autism Hero Project Twitter: Autismhero_AHP LinkedIn: Autism-Hero-Project Sponsors: Audible audibletrial.com/adventuresinautism Making Authentic Friendships makingauthenticfriendships.com Connect with Megan: IG: @adventuresinautismpod FB: @Adventures In Autism Podcast Email: adventuresinautism2018@yahoo.com Enjoying the show? I would so appreciate your rating & review! --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/megan-carranza/message
Today I’m chatting with my sometimes cohost, my sister Melissa! We’re giving some updates and talking about how Mel is doing in her cancer journey. She’s just finished her second month of maintenance chemo and so far, so good. She’s elaborating on that and sharing her feelings now that she’s 6 months out from her brain surgery. Also, I’m giving some updates on Logan and how he’s been doing lately. We’ve had some recent changes to his schedule and meds- these were not planned changes (I’m explaining more in the episode of how this came about) but they have actually turned out to be really good for him. Later, we’re answering some listener questions which is always fun! We talk about everything from our relationship to what TV shows we’re into right now. I love bringing Mel on the pod from time to time as a way for our family & friends to check in- but it’s turned into more than that because this community has been SO supportive of her and our family. I’m so grateful for all of you! Per usual, we had a great time chatting (and joking around as we always do!) and I hope you enjoy listening! Connect with Melissa: Instagram: @thezill Sponsors: Audible audibletrial.com/adventuresinautism Making Authentic Friendships makingauthenticfriendships.com Connect with Megan: IG: @adventuresinautismpod FB: @Adventures In Autism Podcast Email: adventuresinautism2018@yahoo.com Enjoying the show? I would so appreciate your rating & review! --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/megan-carranza/message
Today I’m catching up with past guest, Whitney of @thebehaviorcompass. Whitney shared the early years of her journey with her son Kyson back on episode 41 of AIA. Today, we’re picking up where we left off and answering some awesome listener questions! Since we recorded that episode, a lot has changed for Whitney. She talks very openly about experiencing feelings of grief and burnout after Kyson was diagnosed with ASD. We discuss all of that and how self care has played a huge role in getting Whitney back to a place of positivity and made her feel more grounded. We also talk about Kyson’s progress, their journey to finding the right BCBA and lots of other fun updates with their family. Whitney is such a sweetheart and her honesty is so refreshing. It was an honor to get her back on the podcast! We had such a great conversation and I hope you enjoy listening! Connect with Whitney: Instagram: @thebehaviorcompass Sponsors: Audible audibletrial.com/adventuresinautism Making Authentic Friendships makingauthenticfriendships.com Connect with Megan: IG: @adventuresinautismpod FB: @Adventures In Autism Podcast Email: adventuresinautism2018@yahoo.com Enjoying the show? I would so appreciate your rating & review! --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/megan-carranza/message
Today I’m chatting with autism mom, Jenna Handlen, all about her beautiful daughter, Annabelle. Jenna talks about how Annabelle’s speech delay as a toddler raised red flags for her pediatrician. Although Jenna moved forward with early intervention, she felt her doctor was being overly concerned and that Annabelle was “fine”. Jenna was very open about her feelings of denial at that time. She shares how it took time and a mindset shift to come to terms with the fact that Annabelle had autism. We also talk about how challenging the IEP process was for her, and how it’s thankfully improved now. Jenna explains how she went from being in denial as a parent, to truly finding the beauty in their situation. I think so many of us can relate to those same feelings. I had such a great conversation with Jenna and I hope you enjoy listening! Connect with Jenna: Instagram: jenna.handlen Sponsors: Audible audibletrial.com/adventuresinautism Making Authentic Friendships makingauthenticfriendships.com Connect with Megan: IG: @adventuresinautismpod FB: @Adventures In Autism Podcast Email: adventuresinautism2018@yahoo.com Enjoying the show? I would so appreciate your rating & review! --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/megan-carranza/message
In today’s episode I’m flying solo and talking about a very important topic: self care. I feel like we all hear the term “self care” A LOT these days, and it really does have a different meaning to us all. Today I’m sharing how I’ve been working on improving my own self care, and how I recently discovered a new meaning to the term. I am getting VERY personal (consider this your warning!) and talking about a couple different health issues that I’ve been dealing with lately. I share how this has forced me to re-examine my approach to self care. I’m also talking about making self care a priority in my everyday life, and what works for me. Later, I’m also sharing listener tips on how you guys practice your own self care. There are some really good ones! I wanted to do this episode because I feel like as parents (and especially as special needs parents) we are constantly putting ourselves on the back burner. I personally have done this for years and I know many of you can relate. Hopefully this episode will make you want to turn over a new leaf! Enjoy listening! Sponsors: Audible audibletrial.com/adventuresinautism Making Authentic Friendships makingauthenticfriendships.com Connect with Megan: IG: @adventuresinautismpod FB: @Adventures In Autism Podcast Email: adventuresinautism2018@yahoo.com Enjoying the show? I would so appreciate your rating & review! --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/megan-carranza/message
Today’s episode is a little different. October is Down syndrome awareness month and I really wanted to celebrate that by sharing a story of Down syndrome here on the podcast. Today I’m chatting with Lauren Molloy, all about her journey with her adorable daughter, Autumn. When Lauren was 10 weeks pregnant, she learned she was having a baby girl. She also learned that her baby had Down syndrome. Lauren talks all about processing that diagnosis throughout her pregnancy and how she prepared for her baby by finding resources and connecting with the Down syndrome community. Autumn was also born with a heart defect that required surgery and Lauren details their journey with her surgery and recovery. Autumn just recently celebrated her first birthday so it felt like a very appropriate time for Lauren to share their story! I am thrilled to have Lauren on the show today and it’s amazing how much I can relate to their journey despite our children having a very different diagnosis. Special needs really connect us. We had a great time chatting and I hope you enjoy listening! Connect with Lauren: Facebook: Lauren Molloy Sponsors: Audible audibletrial.com/adventuresinautism Making Authentic Friendships makingauthenticfriendships.com Connect with Megan: IG: @adventuresinautismpod FB: @Adventures In Autism Podcast Email: adventuresinautism2018@yahoo.com Enjoying the show? I would so appreciate your rating & review! --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/megan-carranza/message
Today I’m chatting with autism dad and podcaster, Fred Marvel, all about his journey with his son Aleks. Their story starts out very differently from any I’ve ever heard before. When Aleks was just an infant, he suffered brain trauma caused by shaken baby syndrome. Fred shares how this happened after Aleks was being babysat by someone they thought was a trusted friend. Dealing with this unthinkable situation as new parents really forced Fred and his wife to become strong advocates for Aleks from the beginning. Amazingly, Aleks was able to make a full recovery by age three. After overcoming such incredible odds, Aleks started displaying some atypical behaviors. After being evaluated they were told he had some “autistic symptoms” but was diagnosed with ADHD and SPD. Because Fred is such a great advocate, they were able to get him all the services he needed. As time went on, Fred began to wonder if Aleks was actually on the spectrum. Just last year, they began seeking a diagnosis. Fred explains how getting the diagnosis was made even more difficult due to the pandemic. Fred and his family have had such a unique journey right from the start. I really enjoyed talking to Fred and I’m so glad he decided to start his own podcast, The Spectrum Dad! We had a great conversation and I hope you enjoy listening! Connect with Fred: IG: @thespectrumdad Podcast: The Spectrum Dad Sponsors: Audible audibletrial.com/adventuresinautism Making Authentic Friendships makingauthenticfriendships.com Connect with Megan: IG: @adventuresinautismpod FB: @Adventures In Autism Podcast Email: adventuresinautism2018@yahoo.com Enjoying the show? I would so appreciate your rating & review! --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/megan-carranza/message
Today I’m chatting with past guest, Kelly of @growingupsteven. Kelly was on the pod way back on episode 38 and I’m thrilled to bring her back on today. Kelly and I catch up on everything that’s been going on with her, Steven and their family. Kelly is also answering listener questions and as usual, her answers are so truthful and thought provoking! One of the things I appreciate most about Kelly is her honesty. She is so willing to go there and give the raw truth on many difficult to discuss issues. Her wisdom as a seasoned mother (Steven is now 30) is so valuable. I had so much fun chatting with Kelly (again!) and I hope you enjoy listening! Connect with Kelly: IG: @growingupsteven Sponsors: Audible audibletrial.com/adventuresinautism Making Authentic Friendships makingauthenticfriendships.com Connect with Megan: IG: @adventuresinautismpod FB: @Adventures In Autism Podcast Email: adventuresinautism2018@yahoo.com Enjoying the show? I would so appreciate your rating & review! --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/megan-carranza/message
Today I’m flying solo and catching you guys up on what’s been going on with us! To start I’m sharing how Logan’s first few weeks of school are going. Although Logan is able to go in person, this year (so far) has still been very different due to covid- I’m talking all about that! I’m also giving some updates on Logan’s aac and our journey with medication. It’s been a year now that Logan has had his talker and he has truly made so much progress! As far as medication, that has also been several months of many ups and downs. We’re finally starting to see some majorly positive changes which I’m excited to share! Lastly, I’m reflecting back on the two year anniversary of Adventures in Autism and sharing some of my big takeaways. It’s always great to sit down record these solo episodes- I hope you enjoy listening! Sponsors: Audible audibletrial.com/adventuresinautism Making Authentic Friendships makingauthenticfriendships.com Connect with Megan: IG: @adventuresinautismpod FB: @Adventures In Autism Podcast Email: adventuresinautism2018@yahoo.com Enjoying the show? I would so appreciate your rating & review! --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/megan-carranza/message
Today I’m chatting with my guest Lindsay Schuster. Lindsay and I connected in an autism Facebook group where she had posted about recently becoming a caregiver to her 53 year old cousin, John, who is on the spectrum. After John’s mother (Lindsay’s aunt) passed away, Lindsay and her family were trying to decide the best course of action for John. They were planning on an assisted living facility, but Lindsay felt a calling for John to move in with her family and become his main caregiver. While they had grown up together, living with John and autism in general, opened a whole new world for Lindsay. Today we’re discussing everything that has come along with their journey. All the challenges and the triumphs. From how her family is adjusting (Lindsay is a mom of three), to the many ways John is impacting their lives. In her own words, John is “teaching me to love more.” This episode was so heartwarming! I’m truly blown away by Lindsay and I loved our conversation. I hope you enjoy listening! Connect with Lindsay: Facebook: Lindsay Schuster Instagram: @schustergirl Sponsors: Audible audibletrial.com/adventuresinautism Making Authentic Friendships makingauthenticfriendships.com Connect with Megan: IG: @adventuresinautismpod FB: @Adventures In Autism Podcast Email: adventuresinautism2018@yahoo.com Enjoying the show? I would so appreciate your rating & review! --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/megan-carranza/message
Today I’m chatting with autism dad and special education attorney, Lloyd Donders. Lloyd became interested in special education law when he was navigating the school system for his own son, who is on the spectrum. Even though Lloyd was a lawyer himself, he still had a hard time getting his son all the services he needed within their school district. Once he learned everything he needed to in order to help his own son, he set out to help other families as well in this very often challenging area. Lloyd and I discuss everything from FAPE (free appropriate public education) to inclusion, to simply knowing your child’s rights and how to get the best education possible for them. I learned SO MUCH from our conversation and I’m so glad Lloyd came on the podcast to share this very valuable information! I hope you enjoy listening! Connect with Lloyd: Facebook: Law Offices of Lloyd Donders, Esq. Website: www.specialedlegalinfo.com Sponsors: Audible audibletrial.com/adventuresinautism Making Authentic Friendships makingauthenticfriendships.com Connect with Megan: IG: @adventuresinautismpod FB: @Adventures In Autism Podcast Email: adventuresinautism2018@yahoo.com Enjoying the show? I would so appreciate your rating & review! --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/megan-carranza/message
Today I’m once again chatting with my sister, Melissa. We’re giving some updates and talking about everything that’s been going on with our family lately. First we’re discussing Mel’s brain cancer journey and more importantly, finishing treatment! These past couple months have been a blur of radiation, doctors appointments and medication. It’s so great to get this first phase of treatment behind us! Mel talks about the tough parts of her journey (like losing her hair and total exhaustion) and looks forward to the future. I’m so proud of her! Later, we’re talking about Logan’s recent hospital stay and how he’s recovering from his infection. We’re also discussing ALL the kids starting school and how it looks different for each of them. Lots happening on the home front! It’s always fun to bring my sister on the pod- I hope you enjoy listening! Connect with Melissa: IG: @thezill Sponsors: Audible audibletrial.com/adventuresinautism Making Authentic Friendships makingauthenticfriendships.com Connect with Megan: IG: @adventuresinautismpod FB: @Adventures In Autism Podcast Email: adventuresinautism2018@yahoo.com Enjoying the show? I would so appreciate your rating & review! --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/megan-carranza/message
Today I’m chatting with autism mom and DIY queen, Whitney Gainer. Whitney is bravely sharing her journey with her 3 year old son, Jed, for the first time ever. As a mother of six, Whitney definitely had her fair share of parenting experience! But as she explains in this episode, Whitney was thrown a complete curveball with her youngest. Today we are discussing all the details of their autism journey and the impact it’s had on her and her family. I first became familiar with Whitney several years ago through her very popular brand, Shanty2Chic. Whitney and her sister Ashley started with a blog and it quickly became a huge success. The sisters went on to build a major business including their own show on HGTV. But with their primary focus on building furniture, Whitney kept her private family life off the blog...until she had a change of heart and decided to open up about their story. Whitney refers to her sons journey as “their treasure” and today she is opening up and sharing for the first time. This conversation is beautiful, heartfelt and raw. I’m so honored that Whitney shared their story with me. I hope you enjoy listening! Connect with Whitney: FB & IG: Shanty2Chic Sponsors: Audible audibletrial.com/adventuresinautism Making Authentic Friendships makingauthenticfriendships.com Connect with Megan: IG: @adventuresinautismpod FB: @Adventures In Autism Podcast Email: adventuresinautism2018@yahoo.com Enjoying the show? I would so appreciate your rating & review! --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/megan-carranza/message
Today I’m chatting with special education teacher, Ann Hall. Ann holds a very special place in my heart because she was actually Logan’s preschool teacher the year he was diagnosed with autism. We have maintained a friendship ever since and I’m thrilled to welcome her as a guest! Today we’re discussing ALL the things regarding to the 2020/2021 school year. Obviously, this year is going to be very different. Ann gives her perspective as a teacher going into this year. She’s sharing her thoughts and concerns as well as her plans to make this year the best it can be- despite the circumstances. I’m also sharing what we’re planning for this year and how we came to our decisions. I think this was a very important conversation to have because obviously it’s top of mind for so many of us. Talking with Ann was both enlightening and comforting to me. She is always a pleasure to chat with and this was no exception. I hope you enjoy listening! Sponsors: Audible audibletrial.com/adventuresinautism Making Authentic Friendships makingauthenticfriendships.com Connect with Megan: IG: @adventuresinautismpod FB: @Adventures In Autism Podcast Email: adventuresinautism2018@yahoo.com Enjoying the show? I would so appreciate your rating & review! --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/megan-carranza/message
Today I’m chatting with speech and language pathologist, Kennedy Richardson. Kennedy and I talk all about her journey and how she is now working as an SLP in a high school. Kennedy originally set out to work with young children in early intervention, but after working with older kids and adults she really found her calling. I was super excited to have this conversation with Kennedy- I feel like there is so often a focus on young children, especially when it comes to speech. But progress can truly happen at any age! Kennedy shares her experience working with assistive tech and how sometimes low tech can be just as beneficial, depending on the individual. We also talk about the difference between speech delays and language disorders. Kennedy shares so much valuable info during this episode! I thoroughly enjoyed this conversation and I hope you enjoy listening! Connect with Kennedy: IG: @kennedyyrichardson Sponsors: Audible audibletrial.com/adventuresinautism Making Authentic Friendships makingauthenticfriendships.com Connect with Megan: IG: @adventuresinautismpod FB: @Adventures In Autism Podcast Email: adventuresinautism2018@yahoo.com Enjoying the show? I would so appreciate your rating & review! --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/megan-carranza/message
Today I’m chatting with fellow autism mom and author, Dr. Lisa Peña. Lisa shares her journey with her beautiful daughter, Isla. After several years and pursuing many different doctors and treatments, Isla was diagnosed with autism. Through all the ups and downs Lisa remained her greatest advocate and biggest supporter. Their journey inspired Lisa to first start her blog (The MOCHA tribe diaries) in an effort to help connect other moms with autistic children. Lisa also wrote her book “Waiting for the Lightbulb” which is a raw and beautiful inside look at their story. Recently, Lisa has teamed up with some other amazing mothers in the autism community to start “Labeled and Loved” which is a nonprofit that is planning retreats (among other things!) for mothers who have children with special needs. After reading Lisa’s book, I couldn’t wait to have her on the show. This conversation left me so fulfilled and uplifted. Lisa is so inspiring and I hope you enjoy listening! Connect with Lisa: http://mochatribediaries.com/ Sponsors: Audible audibletrial.com/adventuresinautism Making Authentic Friendships makingauthenticfriendships.com Connect with Megan: IG: @adventuresinautismpod FB: @Adventures In Autism Podcast Email: adventuresinautism2018@yahoo.com Enjoying the show? I would so appreciate your rating & review! --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/megan-carranza/message
In today’s episode I’m flying solo and sharing what I’ve learned after doing 100 episodes of this podcast. This show really started from my own desire to have conversations with other people who were on a similar path. I was desperately craving connection from people who “got it”. I knew that if I was seeking that connection, then it was likely that others were too. And thus Adventures in Autism was born! After 100 episodes and countless incredible conversations with my many amazing guests, I have truly learned so much. From how to be a host to letting go of fear for the future- I’m spilling it all today! I’m also answering some very thoughtful listener questions. I can’t say thank you enough to this community- I am so grateful to have you all on this ride with me! I hope you enjoy listening to this episode. Sponsors: Audible audibletrial.com/adventuresinautism Making Authentic Friendships makingauthenticfriendships.com Connect with Megan: IG: @adventuresinautismpod FB: @Adventures In Autism Podcast Email: adventuresinautism2018@yahoo.com Enjoying the show? I would so appreciate your rating & review! --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/megan-carranza/message
In today’s episode I’m chatting with fellow autism mom, Desiree Goode. Desiree shares her journey with her adorable daughter, Ellie. Desiree explains how despite her early concerns about her daughter, doctors dismissed her and instead just labeled Ellie “strong willed”. Desiree knew there was something more at play and continued to advocate for Ellie and eventually she was diagnosed with ASD. Desiree and I also talk about how isolating it can be during the early days of a diagnosis, as well as how her daughter is doing now. I really enjoyed this conversation and I hope you enjoy listening! Sponsors: Audible audibletrial.com/adventuresinautism Making Authentic Friendships makingauthenticfriendships.com Connect with Megan: IG: @adventuresinautismpod FB: @Adventures In Autism Podcast Email: adventuresinautism2018@yahoo.com Enjoying the show? I would so appreciate your rating & review! --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/megan-carranza/message
In today’s episode I’m chatting with fellow autism mom, Tiffany Klett. Tiffany and I connected several months back when she became a listener of the podcast. I’m thrilled to welcome her on the show today as a guest! Tiffany shares her unique journey with her youngest son, Parker. Tiffany also has two older sons who are neurotypical. Parker was born when his brothers were 12 and 13 years old. As Tiffany says, Parker was “the surprise of a lifetime!”. Tiffany talks all about Parker’s early years (and how he differed from his brothers) as well as more recent events, like kindergarten placement and navigating the school system. Tiffany is a delight- she is so warm and easy to talk to. We had a great conversation and I hope you enjoy listening! Connect with Tiffany: FB: Tiffany Klett Sponsors: Audible audibletrial.com/adventuresinautism Making Authentic Friendships makingauthenticfriendships.com Connect with Megan: IG: @adventuresinautismpod FB: @Adventures In Autism Podcast Email: adventuresinautism2018@yahoo.com Enjoying the show? I would so appreciate your rating & review! --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/megan-carranza/message
Today I am once again chatting with my sister, Melissa. We’re discussing some recent updates on her journey with brain cancer and next steps for her treatment. Per usual, Mel is as candid and honest as ever! We talk about her new challenges while recovering from brain surgery and how they’re affecting her day to day life, as well as her future. We’re also talking about her therapy (specifically OT and PT) and how it’s amazing to see the similarities between her and Logan- even though they’re obviously very different situations, there’s a lot of overlap in terms of goals. Later, we’re getting back to last weeks topic of processing feelings. Melissa is obviously experiencing A TON of new emotions around all this and we’re discussing her own feelings of grief. We also get into how we’re both working on being more mindful and coming from a place of gratitude. It’s always a pleasure to bring my sister on the pod (and open with a song of course!) and this episode was no exception! I hope you enjoy listening! Connect with Mel: FB: Melissa Mitchell IG: @thezill Melissa’s Go Fund Me: https://www.gofundme.com/f/make-it-count-for-melissa Sponsors: Audible audibletrial.com/adventuresinautism Making Authentic Friendships makingauthenticfriendships.com Connect with Megan: IG: @adventuresinautismpod FB: @Adventures In Autism Podcast Email: adventuresinautism2018@yahoo.com Enjoying the show? I would so appreciate your rating & review! --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/megan-carranza/message
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Comments (2)

Ricardo da Cruz de Carvalho

Go Manny!

Dec 11th
Reply

Ricardo da Cruz de Carvalho

Perfect episode! ❤

Nov 19th
Reply
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