PLANO (CBSDFW) – Like any Mom, Karen Carmeli is full of pride when she talks about her son, 9-year-old Yair. “He was a great baby… always happy. He was such a joy, and still is.” Yair is also autistic.
“Back then, he had absolutely no eye contact. He didn’t speak, he wasn’t verbal, he didn’t respond to his name.”
When Carmeli got over the shock and some of the heartbreak, she soon realized that the challenges of caring for an autistic child were just beginning.
“I felt very overwhelmed with all of the paperwork that I had. I had to track all of the medicine that he’s taking every day, I have goals that his speech therapy set up, that his occupational therapy set up… school, of course,” says Carmeli. “I tried to use spreadsheets, I had notebooks with lots of pages, sometimes he would take them and rip them… or I’d lose them. I knew I needed something central to have them all organized, and… I decided, well, I’m going to build an app for that!”
So with no computer development experience, this determined Mom did exactly that. The app, called ‘My Autism Day’ became available at the App Store last month.
“It takes every aspect that might impact his behavior, his achievement, his goals, and puts it all in one place.”
The autism app can track medications, diet, results of various therapies, even sleeping patterns. It will also organize emails– say from school– and record notes from doctors’ appointments. Plus, it’s completely portable.
“When you have a kid with autism, you really have to take care of yourself as well, it’s something that I learned over the years, if I’m not well, how can I take care of him?”
Carmeli says ‘My Autism Day’ helps her do both… and she hopes it will help other families facing this incredible challenge, as well.
“I’m very proud of it.”