Sunday, April 11, 2010

Autism // Early signs or just acting different?

Do you think you can predict a child has autism when they are still a baby? Or is that just ridiculous?

These are the early symptoms of autism:
~does not babble, point, or make meaningful gestures by one year of age
~does not speak one word by sixteen months
~does not combine two words by two years of age
~does not respond to his or her name
~loses language or social skills
~avoids eye contact
~doesn't seem to know how to play with toys
~excessively lines up toys or other objects
~is attached to one particular toy or object
~doesn't smile
~at times seems to be hearing impaired

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My cousin, Michelle, was just told that her son, Adam, is showing signs of autism. Adam likes to line blocks up in a row and this is apparently a sign of autism. the people that work for the day care that Adam is in told her this. Now this may be just to warn her but it actually made her worried. The people at the daycare don't like her that much because she is picky about the food Adam eats so they probably told her in a way that didn't sound like a warning, which is messed up.

Also one of my close friend's nephew lines up his toy cars all the time. But he doesn't isolate himself from everyone and he talks all the time. I informed my friend about the sign just so they can watch out for it.

Elijah lining up his cars. :D

I don't think a mother should get worked up if they see that their child is lining up their toys. My brother, who is now 19, lined up his toys when he was a baby too. He is very private and keeps to himself but he is also very sociable when he wants to be. I think everyone is private for their own reasons so it's normal. He was never diagnosed with autism.

Also in my opinion, I don't see a child lining up his/her toys a bad thing. To me it looks like that child is going to be very neat and organized when they get older.

I guess it is just a warning that they should watch out for it and try to prevent it.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Saving Private Ryan

This movie is basically about a group of soldiers that were sent out on a mission to find Private James Francis Ryan and bring him home. The movie begins with the D-Day Invasion on the beaches of Normandy, France. After Captain Miller (played by Tom Hanks) receives a mission from the top General to get hold of Private Ryan and make sure he gets home. This is because Private Ryan's three other brothers all died in combat. So Captain Miller and seven other soldiers go on this mission to save Private Ryan.

Captain Miller: Keep the sand out of your weapons. Keep those actions clear. I'll see you on the beach.

The scene of the D-Day invasion alone showed all the horrors that can come out of war. Our soldiers were better off being blindfolded. Even before they had a chance to get off the boats the were shot. Explosions went off left and right. If you didn't get shot you were probably blown up. There was this one part when a medic was helping this one wounded soldier and once he finally stopped the bleeding the patient was shot in the head. It was like they didn't have a chance to even pick up their weapons. More than 9,000 Allied soldiers were killed in such little time.

Captain Miller: It's like finding a needle in a stack of needles.

Their journey to find Private Ryan was not a walk in the park. Every minute they had to be alert for an attack. The only clue they could got was that Ryan's unit was an element of the 101st Airborne Division. In search of this unit one of the soldiers die. When Private Adrian Caparzo (played by Vin Diesel)dies only a couple of minutes of grief are allowed before they move one. it is amazing how they can just move alone without looking back on a friend that just died. At a rally point they find out from a man in the same unit that Private Ryan was in Ramelle.

Sergeant Horvath: I don't know. Part of me thinks the kid's right. He asks what he's done to deserve this. He wants to stay here, fine. Let's leave him and go home. But then another part of me thinks, what if by some miracle we stay, then actually make it out of here. Someday we might look back on this and decide that saving Private Ryan was the one decent thing we were able to pull out of this whole godawful, shitty mess. Like you said, Captain, maybe we do that, we all earn the right to go home.

By the time they find Private Ryan two of the eight soldiers have died. After receiving news about his brothers death Private Ryan refuses to take the easy way out and go home. He believed that all of the men he fought with fought as hard as he did. He didn't understand why he ,out of all of them, was going home. So General Miller decides they will stay to see that Private Ryan carries out his mission and survives so he can go home. In this battle to protect the bridge in Ramelle you can see how with little artillery available they were able to put up a fight. They had to think quick to make plans that could take out more than one tank and three times more men then they had. Before the fight you can see how open and peaceful people are to each other. Also during the battle one man ,who was detailed from the 29th Infantry Division (played by Jeremy Davies), was in charge of carrying the ammo and distributing it. Out of his fear to fight and death he fails to give ammo to two of his fellow soldiers and is the reason for their deaths. I wonder how much guilt that can put on a man. His fear made him weak and caused two of his men to die. Fighting a war is not just physically hard, like getting shot, but mentally too because every second there is a possibility that you will die and you have to fight long battles with this thought in the back of your mind. At the end of the movie only two of the eight men survived alone with Private Ryan. Their mission was accomplished.

Gen. George C. Marshall: My dear Mrs Ryan: It's with the most profound sense of joy that I write to inform you your son, Private James Ryan, is well and, at this very moment, on his way home from European battlefields. Reports from the front indicate James did his duty in combat with great courage and steadfast dedication, even after he was informed of the tragic loss your family has suffered in this great campaign to rid the world of tyranny and oppression. I take great pleasure in joining the Secretary of War, the men and women of the U.S. Army, and the citizens of a grateful nation in wishing you good health and many years of happiness with James at your side. Nothing, not even the safe return of a beloved son, can compensate you, or the thousands of other American families, who have suffered great loss in this tragic war. I might share with you some words which have sustained me through long, dark nights of peril, loss, and heartache. And I quote: "I pray that our Heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your bereavement, and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved and lost, and the solemn pride that must be yours to have laid so costly a sacrifice upon the alter of freedom." -Abraham Lincoln. Yours very sincerely and respectfully, George C. Marshall, General, Chief of Staff.