Bishop Family | Phoenix, AZ | Laura Gentry Photography

This Spectrum Inspired session was documented by Laura Gentry Photography. Laura, thank you for your devotion to our nonprofit, your work and commitment is greatly appreciated. 

Michael, age 9, "Innovative, loving, inventive."
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Powerful words shared by Michael's mom, Heather, 

"When Michael was born, I knew right away he was special. He was looking around and holding his head up pretty much from day one. For almost 12 months, it was very difficult to get Micheal to smile. As a mom, not being able to get your baby to smile and laugh is a horrible feeling. Although I knew something was different with Michael, I was in denial. Not that I though Autism was bad, I just didn't want him labeled. 
As Michael grew, it was so apparent he was my little genius. He was saying large words and actually knowing how to use them at 3 years old. He preferred conversations that were way beyond his years. He was always taking thing apart to see how they were made or how they worked. He struggled getting them back together most of the time. In first grade he was tested and earned the right to call himself gifted. 
Now that Michael is 9 years old, he understands what autism is. He does not use it as an excuse! His teachers and principal adore what an auesome (thats how we spell it here) boy he is. They have watched him grow from a kindergartener to ending his 4th grade year this week. He has been blessed to have and amazing school that has worked with him from day 1. They all cannot wait to see him grow to be a very successful man. They always tell me they will read or hear about him on TV having created something amazing! 
Michael still struggles with his social skills. He barely has friends, which is so sad because he is so outgoing like his mommy. What friends he does have, are amazing to him. I will say, if you spend anytime with Michael, you will walk away having learned something new. His daily struggles are always changing. The same struggles will come and go. But he does not let that stop him. He says "Autism does not have me mommy, I have it"!

And here is their story in photographs...

Spectrum Inspired.