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  • 365 Faces / 132 & 133

    There is a magical separateness about Lucy.

    Sometimes she is hidden in her own world, behind a shield of her mind that keeps her in a place hard to reach by rushing passer-bys.

    There are other moments, where her sparkling joy or deep sorrow spill out like an avalanche. They tend to sweep away majority of people around her whose comfort zone is limited to behaviors within a “proper code of conduct”.

    Growing up in our society means learning to control personal emotions and behavior to fit into a specific social box.

    It is hard to be different. Scary. Lonely.

    Lost in a world speeding by on tracks laid out with most common denominator and destination in mind.

    Surrounded by people often spooked by explosive joy or vocal anger on public display, and threatened by lack of eye contact and absence of familiar small talk.

    It is hard to make friends. It is hard to work harder than everyone else to just fit in.

    Lucy has Asperger’s. Valerie, her mom was told by several specialists that she would never be able to go to college.

    The doctors were wrong. They did not understand and appreciate a mother's tenacity and perseverance to prove them wrong, and to do right by her girl.

    Lucy is beautiful, smart, vivacious, and very loving. Strong student, she lives and studies away from her home, at Mercyhurst University, one of the very few renown colleges in our country that understands and works through the additional hurdles she has to climb over to get what we all take for granted: building a circle of friends, getting an education, job, relationship, and eventually her own family.

    She is on her way. Currently in her freshman year, she was just inducted into their Honor Society. This May, she will bike from New York City to DC as part of Climate Ride. Her journey is bumpy at times, but with the support of her Mom, her family and friends, and her hard, hard work, she is doing it.

    If you can, please help me support Lucy on her ride. Here is her Climate Ride donations page link.

    http://bike.climateride.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=donorDrive.participant&participantID=1759

    Thank you. Anything is possible. Believe in it.
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