Joshua Pulizzi, son of Orange Effect Foundation founders, Joe and Pam Pulizzi, has addressed the attendees at every annual golf outing since they began in 2006.
Good evening, and thank you for coming out here to support Autism tonight. My name is Joshua Pulizzi.
Most children start talking around 6 months. However, I was two years old and I hadn’t said a single word; all that came out of my mouth at the time was various noises. My parents, me being the special first kid, were first-timers and naturally assumed this was normal for a while. Eventually, they looked into my lack of speech only to find out that I had Autism.
There are many different kinds of Autism, which can cause mental disabilities, motor coordination disabilities, attention issues, and some physical health issues. The issue that stood out the most during my development was speech. I remember the days sitting with my speech instructor, with extra care not to get my F’s confused with Th’s. I am thankful for the work that Easter Seals has helped me with, and for my parents for extending the work that Easter Seals has done.
Did you know, however, that there are extra-special bonuses that come with Autism? The one that represents me the absolute most is “deeply passionate interests.” Anyone who knows me well would say that this is clearly visible in my life: my initial passion with LEGO, to old video game systems, to computers. People with Autism can be more helpful and more sincere. They also tend to focus on the smaller parts of the picture, rather than the big one. They have tested higher on visual and nonverbal intelligence tests, and they tend to mean what they say as well. Finally, people with Autism can be creative and have a unique perspective on things.
I am currently living an amazing life with my awesome parents and my occasionally annoying brother. I am a freshmen going into St. Ed’s this year with many honors classes. So thank you for supporting Orange Effect, so that other kids like me can be given to chance to have an awesome life.
Joshua is the son of Joe and Pam Pulizzi, the founders of the Orange Effect Foundation. Joshua was diagnosed with Autism at age 2 and is the driving force behind his parents’ motivation to bring early intervention to every other child on the spectrum. Joshua loves LEGO bricks and Apple computers. He is brother to Adam and excited to start on a new adventure to high school this year.