For many parents, travelling with children can be stressful. But flying with a child with autism can take stress to a whole new level. The crowds, the noise, the security and the general frenzy of it all can be overwhelming for anyone, but for someone especially attuned to the social and sensory stressors associated with mass travel situations can escalate quickly. Happily, this was not the case for Angie Solis and her kids. Her son Zion has autism, and she wanted to make the airport experience a little less nerve-wracking for him. What ended up happening stunned her — as it will you.
After a nervous arrival at the airport, Angie and Zion met this smiling woman, and the rest, as we’ll leave Solis to tell you, is TSA history.
A passenger support specialist. How awesome is that?? And could Alesea sound more like an angel? She was clearly well trained and deserves all the praise, along with the TSA coin—we’re hoping it’s made of gold– she earned from Solis’ post.
Solis’ anxiety is understandable. Moms tend to overanalyze (guilty over here!), so by preparing for the worst and for any problems that might arise, Angie felt she was ready. What she wasn’t ready for was the magical Alesea and how calm and safe she made the family feel.
What could have been a scary, potentially nightmarish experience was, instead, a positive, uplifting, wonderful, inspiring story. If everyone was this aware and thoughtful and compassionate, the world would be a better place. Faith in humanity restored!
*While Canada doesn’t have a program like TSA Cares, there is a Family/Special Needs security line with screening officers trained to offer additional assistance. Hopefully they also have an Alesea on staff.