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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Health and Safety Guide

ASERT has compiled resources for those with autism and those who care for people with autism relating to the current COVID-19 outbreak.

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Responsibility

By Sarah Matincheck

“The price of greatness is responsibility” – Winston Churchill

As you grow up you hear things like “You need to start being more responsible” or “You have a responsibility”.  I grew up hearing things like that from my parents and I would wonder what exactly they meant by that. 

I’m learning that part of being responsible means having an obligation to do something, and that you are being trusted to complete it. Growing up I had different kinds of responsibilities such as helping with chores, cleaning my room, and packing my lunch for school. But as I grow, my responsibilities have also grown….they’ve actually grown a lot!

I now balance my checkbook, make sure I have enough gas in my car and have it serviced, and go to work. Some days the list feels pretty long. 

When I go to work, I have a lot of responsibilities to do at the nursing home. I work in the food services department and I’m in charge of cleaning the dining room, scrubbing the steam table, folding the cloth napkins, making sure the residents are fed and satisfied with their meal – things like that. 

I look at my responsibilities as a chance to demonstrate that I can do things on my own. There are days when I crash. There are days when the things I am responsible for just don’t go as planned, despite my best efforts.  Those are the days that I remind myself that tomorrow is a brand new day. 

The benefit to having all of these responsibilities is that I also feel more independent, and that is a great feeling. I take every opportunity to show others that even though I have autism, I am still able to work through the day. Having responsibilities assures me that people trust me and that they have faith in me. 

And I am learning that how you react when things don’t go as smoothly as you’d hoped really does matter.  

Sure, it can be scary to have responsibilities. But if you take a small break when you get flustered, ask for help if you’re unsure about something, and treat yourself with kindness, it’s actually kind of awesome!

 

Thanks for listening,

Sarah