Spectrum of Hope – Ms. Ruwi
Spectrum of Hope – Ms. Ruwi
Its time to feature another wonderful spectrum of hope! This is an amazing story of Ms. Ruwi and her mother. Ms. Ruwi is a 17-year-old autistic adult and an inspiration to everyone. She is very talented and has several followers on Instagram. Her mother and herself run a beautiful “Home Décor” page called “Thumbi by Ruwi” Ms. Ruwi makes wonderful home décor gifts. So, we bring to you her amazing story.
Q. Please introduce yourself and Ms. Ruwi
I am Sulekha, mother of Ruwaydah (Ruwi). I am presently working as a special educator at CADRRE, The Autism School, Trivandrum. Ruwi is turning 18 in a couple of months and is diagnosed with autism.
Ms. Ruwi with her family
Q. Please tell us more about Ms. Ruwi.
Ruwi was diagnosed with autism a few months after she turned 2 years. Young Ruwi and I shifted from Dubai to Bangalore in 2006 where she underwent early intervention at ComDeall for 3 years. She started speaking words a few months into therapy at ComDeall and I also got the opportunity to do my Diploma in Special Education in Autism. Once again back in UAE, she attended regular school for a year and then moved to a special school where she studied for 4 years. When she was 14, we moved to our home town Trivandrum and she started attending school at CADRRE, The Autism School which is the best thing that has happened to her. With all her challenging behaviors, seizures, and sleep disorder, CADRRE helped us look at the strengths that she had and turn those into possibilities for a better adulthood.
Ms. Ruwi at work
Q. What is the idea behind launching “Thumbi by Ruwi”?
Thumbi by Ruwi was started from the confidence we gained from the skills she had learned at CADRRE. It has been 9 months since then, and we have never had a single week where we haven’t got orders for Ruwi’s work. Ruwi too enjoys working and we post pictures and videos of her work on her Instagram and Facebook page. It started with the idea of keeping Ruwi meaningfully occupied with something that she loves doing. But a few months into it, now we also realize the bigger message that goes out through Ruwi’s work- focus on your child’s ability and not your child’s lack of it.
Gifts made by Ms. Ruwi
Q. What is your favorite part about being Ruwi’s mother?
Every mother’s journey with their child is as unique as the child’s autism itself. My relationship with Ruwi too has evolved over the years. My hopes and agonies, aspirations, and anxieties were different in different phases of Ruwi’s growth. I was an English teacher in a regular school in Dubai and if not for Ruwi, I would have probably never known about autism, wouldn’t have got the opportunity to teach children with autism, or closely interact with families touched by autism. At this point, I am also excited about Ruwi’s growth through Thumbi.
Q. What would you like to tell caregivers in the Autism community?
16 years into my journey with autism, I wish I had known a lot of things then which I now know. So, my message goes out to all parents with children newly diagnosed with autism. Your child is unique, your child is not a “tragedy” or something “unfortunate” that has befallen your family. Try your best to help your child, not “fix” your child. Parenting a child with autism can be stressful, reach out for help from professionals, talk to other parents who have walked the path before you.
Please spread and share this lovely journey to empower all the parents out there!
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