Autism Awareness: Finding Your Voice in Journaling
Autism Awareness Day: Finding Your Voice in Journaling
Autism spectrum disorders affect approximately 1 out of 88 children, according to statistics from the Center for Disease Control. They are more likely to affect boys (1 out of 54) than girls (1 out of 252), and these disorders are found in all racial and ethnic groups. Our son, David, has Asperger's Syndrome, a form of autism that is characterized by significant difficulties in social interaction.
Since Autism Awareness Day is April 2, I've been thinking about how important our scrapbooks are to David. He has always enjoyed looking at the photos, but it's the journaling that he comments on the most. I think it's because of the way I journal in our books. I find journaling about my photos to be easy, but that isn't the case for many scrapbookers. In fact, there are many scrapbookers who don't do journaling at all, because it's too difficult. I hope this article will help you to "find your voice."
I'm not talking about being more outspoken or finding the right words. What I mean by "finding your voice" is determining who will be reading your journaling. For whom are you creating the layout? Is it the people in your layout? Is it for grandparents? Is it for you? (That's okay, you know!) When you know your audience, then you can determine your voice.
For example, in my children's scrapbooks, I address them in my writing. I use first-person narration, such as "We went to our favorite park," and "You looked so cute in your Halloween costume." If I'm creating a layout for my own personal scrapbook, I might use these words: "My children are growing up right before my eyes," or "I married my first love." It's still first-person, but I'm speaking about them, rather than to them.
Scrapbook companies have made it very easy for us to include journaling on our layouts. Most scrapbook lines include journaling boxes or lined papers that can be cut up into any shape you like. Here is a list of some of my favorites:
That's all there is to it. The key is consistency. If you begin speaking TO the subject of your layout, continue to do that throughout the entire journaling section. Try to do it throughout the entire scrapbook. The result will be something everyone who looks at your scrapbook will want to read, because it will sound natural and genuine. Give it a try, and let me know if it works for you.