“Stand up, up, UP!” is the mantra of Surfers for Autism, an organization that runs surf events for children with autism, providing the opportunity to not only catch waves, but to become part of a supportive surfing community.
It is also a message to all those struggling with autism: a message to stand up, no matter how hard it gets. Waves of Healing collects the stories of a group of everyday families who discovered Surfers for Autism in their search for hope, answers, and healing for their children with autism.
These are stories about the struggles children with autism face—the struggle to stand on a surfboard, the struggle to communicate, the struggle to make progress in a world which accepts “normal” and rejects all else. But they’re also stories of breakthroughs, of authentic joy and unbridled excitement as they learn to see their world from a whole new perspective—standing tall atop a surfboard, riding a wave all their own.
Exploring new avenues of therapy for those with autism, with therapeutic and extraordinary results, Waves of Healing is a snapshot of hope, courage, and human perseverance.
About the Author
Cash Lambert is the former editor of Hawaii's Freesurf Magazine. He has written for ESPN Outdoors, the Outdoor Channel, Autism Parenting Magazine, Surfing Magazine, Eastern Surf Magazine and Surfline. A graduate of Palm Beach Atlantic University, he served as a volunteer surf instructor with Surfers for Autism for 4 years.
“Waves of Healing is a powerful and inspirational book—a must-read for anyone with a loved one on the autism spectrum. You will laugh and you will cry as author Cash Lambert passionately shares both the struggles and the triumphs of the autism journey as sand and surf become a form of therapy and healing for so many families.”
—Amy KD Tobik, editor-in chief of Autism Parenting Magazine
“Surfers and water-lovers have long talked about the mysterious healing power of the sea. With empathy, attention to detail, and skillful storytelling, Cash Lambert shows how real that healing power is, taking us deep into the struggles of living with autism, deep into the joyful stories of children literally paddling and riding their way to greater health and happiness. This is such a hopeful and potentially life-changing read.”
—Jaimal Yogis, author of All Our Waves Are Water and Saltwater Buddha
“Waves of Healing is a big-hearted story that will delight anyone who loves the ocean. Saltwater is a universal balm—Cash Lambert knows this deeply, and his commitment to sharing his experience in the surf with autistic kids and their families makes for an inspiring tale, beautifully told.”
—Susan Casey, author of Voices in the Ocean: A Journey Into the Wild and Haunting World of Dolphins
“As a firm believer in the many blessings of surf therapy for children on the spectrum, I was delighted to read Cash Lambert's uplifting and validating account of a season on the shore with Surfers for Autism. He writes with the head and heart of a surfer about the thrilling transformation that finds many children and families on the back of their shared surfing experiences—a must-read for anyone who accepts the healing power of stoke, and the rich, restorative energy to be mined from a community of like-minded souls.
—Daniel Paisner, co-author of Scratching the Horizon: A Surfing Life
“Perfect waves and empty beaches, the sport of surfing is easily romanticized, but at its core it possesses the power to change one's life. For those who struggle with autism, surfing can mean a freedom and joy like they've never experienced. Author Cash Lambert has taken the time to tell the story of this unlikely relationship. He tenderly makes the case for the healing powers of the sea, as well as how and why it can be so therapeutic for those on the autism spectrum. Waves of Healing will stoke you out, it will tug on your heartstrings, and it will make you reconsider what those with autism are capable of—and how one good ride can change everything.”
—Jake Howard, surf writer and editor of First Priority: A Father's Journey in Raising World Champion Surfer Carissa Moore
“Often, it’s difficult to understand the everyday struggles and small milestones that families raising a child with autism face, but Cash Lambert’s firsthand ride-along—both on land and in the sea—truly puts their lives into perspective. A deeply honest and eloquent account, Waves of Healing is a story of hope, and a discovery of what the therapeutic power of the ocean—and organizations like Surfers For Autism—can do.”
—Beau Flemister, former editor-at-large of Surfing Magazine and author of In the Seat of a Stranger’s Car
“Waves of Healing shows how a creative, nature-based approach is often the best way for healing and hope to flow into the lives of those coping with autism and into all lives. Lambert has written a book that is both important and profound.”
—David Athey, Professor of English, Palm Beach Atlantic University, author of Joan of the Everglades