Dealing with a sautism-with-heartpecial needs child is hard enough.

You are likely dealing with a shocking and life-changing revelation and trying hard to come to terms with it. There are times when you may be provoked into fiercely protecting your child’s dignity or dealing with strange glances at the supermarket – the rollercoaster is both physically and emotionally draining. What you don’t want on your plate is the added frustration of not being able to make sense of the endless paperwork, or miss out great opportunities for your child because you didn’t know they existed.

Katherine Kanaaneh, the author of the book, “Autism with HEART” has done a great service to all other parents, teachers, counselors, friends – basically, anyone who needs to understand an autistic person’s worldview. That makes it a book for well – everyone! We all know someone who needs that extra support. Her book is sensitive, honest, deeply empathetic and most importantly- extremely practical.

The book starts with her own struggles as a parent of an autistic child and unravels her learnings and she goes one step after another on her journey. She throws a fresh perspective on the many lives affected by autism in a family.

The acronym HEART stands for :kathrine

H: Heal E: Energize A: Anticipate R: Leverage Routines T: Thrive.

The book’s message is clear- Katherine urges you to refuse to be defeated by the condition and offers practical advice on things like –

1. How to organize your autism-related paperwork: She not only tells you what absolutely needs to be done, but adds a lot of information on the resources and agencies that you can reach out to for help with sorting it all out. She provides a ton of information on discounts on important services and apps, handouts and helpful checklists. (Personally, I think this bit makes the book really stand out and it’s no surprise that it’s already hit the Best Seller list on Amazon.)

2. Preventing Burnout: The book offers techniques for gaining mental and emotional strength, through support groups and mental discipline.

3. Leveraging the power of routines: The book walks us through a number of ideas for staying organised with everyday life, that can save us a lot of frustration.

4. Teaching life skills: The best gift that we can give a child is to teach him to fish instead of feeding him fish every day. Katherine has a ton of real-life examples on how to do just this for a special needs child.

5. Maintaining the quality of your own life: While the author never underestimates the value of support and empathy to an affected child, she gives clear guidelines on how to make time for other important things in your life – for example, quality time spent with your spouse. She emphasizes that these little but treasured family moments can go a long way in replenishing your energy for the challenges ahead.

The book will leave you feeling positive, hopeful, energized and a feeling that you can do it!

This review appeared first on the Huffington Post and is NOT a sponsored review. 

About the author: 

Devishobha Chandramouli is the founder of Kidskintha- a site dedicated to helping millennial parents raise happy kids. She believes that growing up well and happy is a function of growing up with well-informed adults. This site aims to deliver research-grounded and bite-sized pieces of information on two important facets of a child’s life- parenting and education. You can find her voice on the Huffington Post, Addicted2Success, TinyBuddha, Citizen Matters , Nectar and Lies About Parenting.