Rise with the Light

Rise with the Light

My name is Susan Fink and my son was diagnosed with Autism at the age of 3. As a single mom, I have navigated through a variety of adventures, obstacles and personal challenges to advocate and support him. But, as a parent, I also need support and had a hard time finding it...which is why I created a weekly podcast dedicated to supporting families raising children with special needs. I believe this is my purpose - to help others. And I’m on a mission to provide hope and positivity through sharing my personal insight, stories, mindset perspectives and ways to navigate through this journey. Make sure you subscribe so you never miss an episode and if you would like more insight into my life and to receive motivational inspiration in your newsfeed, follow me at @susanfink.rise on instagram and facebook. Thank you for listening, thank you for your support in sharing this podcast to help others. And until next time, I appreciate, I empathize, and I am here for you. and...We. Can. Do. This.

Episodes

June 14, 2021 32 min

Hi there and thank you for joining this episode - a special episode as I have a guest who is helping other people through her business! My special guest today is Dina Farmer. She is a mother of two boys, one of whom is autistic. Her family is a military family (she is also a veteran) and as she was struggling with booking travel for her own family, she pivoted her business to help others - She is a founder and owner of Lily and Mag...

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Has anyone ever told you you’re being too emotional? Have you told yourself that you’re being too emotional? If someone ever says  this to you, stand proud and say, I'm proud to be emotionful! This episode dives into what it actually means to be emotionful, what are emotions, how emotionful people tend to be more empathetic and compassionate. 

I also go into things to consider if someone says "You're too emotional":

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    May 25, 2021 11 min

    Can I ask you something? Where do you look when you are going for a walk, hike, run? 

    I noticed something about myself and wonder if you do the same thing. When I walk, run or go for a hike, I find myself looking down  A LOT. I noticed this when I was going for a walk today and I was just looking down at the ground. I was very aware of where I was looking - the dirty ground, and when I actually picked my head up, lifted it, looked u...

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    May 17, 2021 17 min

    Do you find yourself constantly worrying about the future? Ruminating on thoughts about what could happen and trying to prepare yourself for them? This is what I called wasted worrying. The main reason it's wasted is because you don't know what the future holds. We don't know what is going to happen in the future, so why do we worry so much about it. It's wasted because we waste a lot of energy, emotional energy and...

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    May 11, 2021 16 min

    Coping on a fundamental level is what we do in our response to stress, trauma, challenges, etc. There are two basic ways of thinking about coping: 1) active or engaging coping strategies and 2) avoidant or disengaged coping behaviors.

    Active coping is basically the willingness to address your challenges head on, whether that's internally or externally. This type of coping includes reframing the way you think, accepting what is g...

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    May 3, 2021 20 min

    Do you feel like you lost your identity and you are unfulfilled in a certain area of your life??

    Early on when my son was born as a single mother was working and taking care of my child I completely lost sense of who I am and what my goals were, my passion, my interests - I basically identified myself as a single mom, someone who worked and took care of my son. To be honest, there wasn’t a lot of time to take care of myself or do an...

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    April 26, 2021 8 min

    This is a difficult topic for many. I’ve had the opportunity to speak to other parents and this is one of their struggles.?

    When going through this journey, and especially in the initial diagnosis, you may run across family members who don’t understand, are unsupportive, not willing to learn about the diagnosis, may even say things like - it’s just a phase.?

    You may have to reset your own expectations of your family members.

    They may ...

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    Rise with the Light is not only about challenges we go through as parents with special needs children, but I also cover  making mindset shifts to help you in everyday life deal with different struggles you might be going through, to give you a different perspective and ways to practice. Throughout my journey in battling a variety of challenges from cancer, brain surgery, divorce while 8 months pregnant, autism diagnosis of my son, ...

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    Please welcome to the show, Vani from DotUrMinds. Vani is a special needs mom, raising her daughter with Epidermolysis Bullosa, or EB, is a rare genetic connective tissue disorder that affects 1 out of every 20,000 births (in the United States - approximately 200 children a year are born with EB). Her daughter is now 19 years old, thriving, now in college at UCLA and was able to give her graduation speech at her High School graduat...

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    March 26, 2021 17 min

    What does feeling helpless actually mean? According to the American Psychological Association, learned helplessness occurs when someone repeatedly faces uncontrollable, stressful situations, then does not exercise control when it becomes available.

    Helplessness can come from a single event, like trauma, or a series of events that are recurring. it can lead to depression and often puts your brain into fight or flight mode.

    Helplessnes...

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    I had the pleasure of meeting with Chante Douglas, a single mother, an autism advocate, a military veteran having served in the air force and a published author, bring awareness and advocacy about the autism community. 

    We cover so many topics, including when her son, Levi, was diagnosed, the mental health challenges she has faced, and how she has been working through them. Helping her son with his mental health after he had a '...

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    I had the privilege of connecting with Dr. Tasnuva, who is now a dear friend in the autism community. Not only is she an autism advocate for her son, she has created her own signature program to help other people, utilizing her background in pharmacy and all that she has learned with helping her son and his abilities. She is absolutely inspiring.

    Dr. Tasnuva is a Pharmacist with a PhD in Natural Medicine. She has been an Assistant ...

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    February 20, 2021 23 min

    In this episode, I talk specifically about anger. This is a challenging emotion to navigate, it can take over our entire body and can make us do and say things that we may not mean. 

    When my son was diagnosed and throughout our journey of autism, I have seen anger rise up inside of me - I have let it take control of me rather than taking control of it. 

    What I learned is the emotion of anger may not even be related fully to the circu...

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    It was a blessing to have Jamiel Owens, the founder and founder/host of the Ausome Show and incredible advocate for the autism community. 

    Jamiel's son was diagnosed with autism when he was 3 years old, and in this episode, we talk about his family, when his son was diagnosed, the challenges he faced as a father. We also get into discussion around having a spiritual foundation, ensuring you're communicating with your local p...

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    Grieving isn't just for things that you had and have lost, it's also for things that you may have never had. Basically, grieving the fantasy of what you never had, what you wished for or envisioned, which didn't come true. All of the feelings that come with grieving, including sadness, pain, loss, it’s the same as if you did lose something you had, so there isn’t a difference. 

    I’ll be honest. When I found out I was preg...

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    I wanted to share with you why I called this podcast “Rise with the Light” and why I designed the logo the way I did. Seems silly for an episode, but all of it was intentional and helps to share my journey.

    Throughout my journey with my son and to get to where I am now, I felt like I had to ‘rise’ out of the darkness. While I did my best to be as positive and encouraging to my son as possible, I felt so dark on the inside and any do...

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    January 19, 2021 18 min

    If you are a parent with a child with autism and special needs, you totally get this. Each day can be completely different. You never know when the next meltdown or challenging situation will come up. You can anticipate all you want, but your child might have something that triggers a sensitivity, an emotion that shuts them down, something that makes them physically react. It can be challenging to try to handle a situation that mig...

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    I could not believe it when I received a message from Gary Leavitt, radio host for WMEX in the Boston area. He had come across my name and mission with my podcast, Rise with the Light, and was so inspired he wanted me to be a guest on his show. 

    I am so grateful I am able to spread the word about what my mission and purpose is in life, to help other people by sharing my experiences, insights, mindset perspectives and stories my son ...

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    January 14, 2021 16 min

    Since starting this podcast, I have been asked about advice I would have for other parents. I have not only learned a lot from my son, but also other parents who have children with autism and special needs, teachers and aids who have helped my son, who have been a part of our 'team.' There is a long list of advice, but I focused on the ones that have been impactful for me and I'd like to pass on. 

    Have you ever walked on...

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    January 10, 2021 22 min

    Children with autism and special needs may have challenges with sleep, falling asleep, staying asleep or sleeping at all, which not only creates more challenges, but also has an impact on the rest of the family. When your children don't sleep, most likely you don't sleep. 

    Before my son was diagnosed, I was averaging about 2 hours of sleep because he never slept well. He had a really hard time napping, falling asleep, stayin...

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