Bridget Rawlings learned her son had autism when he was 2 ½ years old; after years of struggling to find resources, Bridget decided to start her own business, Real Expressions, to help families in similar situations. Real Expressions’ mission is to help families find resources and help communities embrace autism.
Bridget didn’t open her business for money or fame but because she wanted to make sure other families in District 4 didn’t feel the way she did when she found out her son had autism. Bridget’s doctor did not point her to any resources or help her in anyway; she felt lost and alone. And like many parents who find out their child is autistic, she thought the worst.
Some people feel autism is a punishment but through her faith Bridget was able to see the silver lining. Bridget told her son: “God gave you to me because he knew I would do everything I could to help you and others. I’m glad God choose me to take care of one of his special children”.
Bridget is on a mission to help her son get the resources he needs and to raise awareness that autism is not a bad word.
Bridget hopes to help parents of special needs children by sharing information. Bridget believes being smart is not about knowing everything, but rather knowing where to get help. Finding services in District 4 is difficult, but Real Expressions is here to help.
Although Real Expressions is currently a for-profit business all income goes towards putting on fundraisers and workshops for families. Bridget hopes to turn Real Expressions into a non-profit by next year.
Bridget Rawlings was born in Rota, Spain and is a mother of three talented children. She serves as the Chairperson for the School Site Council at Valencia Park, and serves at the Bayview Baptist Church. Bridget has been involved with various fashion shows and planning events associated with Events Above & Beyond.
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