A mother understands what a child does not say.

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Autism: Breaking Free

Emily Colsen and Krista Mason

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Emily Colson is an artist, a writer and a single mother. After working for years as an art and creative director in the world of design and advertising, she now devotes her time to helping her autistic son, Max. Using drawing as a way to unlock Max's world, he has learned how to better communicate, learn and find his voice. In 2010 her book Dancing with Max: A Mother and Son Who Broke Free was published. The book recounts the story of her life with Max, the end of her marriage to her college sweetheart and the diagnosis of autism that changed all of their lives.

The prologue and epilogue, written by her father, author and radio personality Chuck Colson, provide deep insight into the strength and character of his daughter and offer a personal look into the bond of love in this devoted family. "I never expected that my daughter would have to go through so many struggles," says Chuck Colson in the prologue. "But just as I've seen in my own life, God can do amazing things through our weaknesses. What happened to Emily -- and to her beautiful son -- is way beyond anything I ever imagined for her -- or myself."

Krista Mason is the mother of Benjamin, 15, who has autism. She is the executive director of Benjamin's Hope, a Michigan-based community designed to address the multi-faceted needs of individuals and families affected by autism and developmental disabilities. She is committed to providing the services necessary in order to address the considerable demands that families face which live with autism and other disabilities.

Still in its development stages, Benjamin's Hope is to be situated on a 40-acre campus north of Holland, Mich. The mission is for Benjamin's Hope to become an embracing farm setting where people with disability and the community gather to find Christ-centered fellowship, treatment, housing and meaningful work.

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guest website: www.benjaminshope.net

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