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For All Abilities

Feb 17, 2020

For All Abilities – The Podcast Episode Eight - Ron Kerns - 


In this episode, I interview Ron  - Autism and Neurodiversity Advocate and Graphic Designer. On the podcast, Ron talks about his autism diagnosis later in life. We discuss how Ron uses his Neurodiversity in his career and how he found a career and a position that allowed him to work to his strengths. 

To connect with Ron, please follow him  on LinkedIn (Ron Kerns) or email him at  Check out his work at 


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Full Transcription from


Betsy Furler  0:00 


Hi, everybody. Welcome to for all abilities the podcast. Today I have a special guest. And this is Ron Kearns. He is going to introduce himself to us talk about his diagnosis, which was later in life. And what that diagnosis means for him now in his life, and what it might have been like if he was diagnosed as a child, and how he uses his brain to be a highly successful person. So Ron, welcome to for all abilities, the podcast.


Ron Kerns  0:44  

Thanks for having me.


Betsy Furler  0:45  

Yes, thank you so much. Why don't you introduce yourself to my audience, tell us a little bit about where you're from what you do now. Anything else you'd like to tell us about yourself?


Ron Kerns  0:59  



See Where am I from? I grew up. I grew up in Detroit, in Michigan, and then four and then after college and all that for many years we lived in for 20 years. We lived in Dallas. And then 2016 we decided it was time for change and we moved to rural northern Arkansas. And that's where we are now.


Betsy Furler  1:32  

Yeah, I saw that and one of the articles I read about you that you now live in Arkansas and you do have some fishing.


Ron Kerns  1:40  

Yes, I'm that we live just a few miles away from the White River which has some of the best rainbow trout fishing in the country. It's absolutely fabulous.


Betsy Furler  1:49  

That is great. I love fishing.


Ron Kerns  1:53  

I am a professional graphic designer.


I have done work. in pretty much any environment, you can come up with over my almost 30 years career in house corporate, working in ad agencies on my own as a freelancer, and I could, and I currently work for a university. There is a small campus for Missouri State University. And that's a short drive away. Just across the border over into Missouri. That's how far north we live in Arkansas. Wow. So that's since I guess, so that's so that's I've been there at the university for it'll be it'll be two years in May. And so and that that particular job has just been going fabulous, best job I've ever had.


Betsy Furler  3:00  

That's nice to hear. And you were diagnosed with autism as an adult, correct? Yes, I was 46. So tell us a little bit about what you were like when you were a little boy


Ron Kerns  3:15  



The one overpower the one overlying theme from when I was a kid was when I was in school. I can remember pretty much walking into kindergarten for the very first day, all of a sudden feeling like I did. And the bullying started pretty much right away and continued K through 12. So I stayed within the same school system trait the entire time. I was in school and it just so that was a huge part of being a kid when I was a kid.


I did find some




relief from that I


would say


refuge from that I when I was about seven or eight my parents got our family a piano. And so piano playing became my, my, my blanket. security blanket. I played and played and played forever. There. Oh, here here's an idea to give you an idea how That became such a huge thing. I can remember being in fifth grade and I would take a pledge black magic marker and draw all the keys on my desk. And so that way I can sit there and play the piano in my mind playing Wow. Wow. I'm


Betsy Furler  5:23  

so you could kind of escape to that that would be right now


Ron Kerns  5:28  

that was my that was my escape. I'm teachers in the janitors didn't care for so much. All right. I didn't have a quick didn't know I didn't have a reasoning for it. Um, there was one particular date with the entire class was heading to a field trip. So the class entire class was just abuzz with activity and just kind of overall madness is everybody was excited about going on this field trip.


I just kind of


hunkered down and was gotten to just zoning everything out, playing my panel on my desk. Then, at some points, the teacher put her head, her hand on my shoulder. And it kind of got me out of that. And I realized that everybody had left and they all got on the bus. And I was and I had no idea. And the teacher was like, it's time to go now. Kind of a thing.


Betsy Furler  6:40  

And you really were able to hyper focus on that.


Ron Kerns  6:45  

Yeah, um, so piano playing turned into once I got into junior high and was able to get in the band. I went into that played a couple of different instruments in band That led to later on within leader in junior high in high school, attending a performing arts camp in the summer, and then through that, I toured Europe with an orchestra for a summer when I was 17. Wow. So all of that kind of all started from


all started back from know the piano thing.


Betsy Furler  7:30  

Did you were you a good student academically or did you struggle in school?


Ron Kerns  7:35  

I struggled terribly. Um, a lot of it had to do with the, a lot of it had to do with bullying. Just self esteem, self confidence, all that kind of stuff. Just going into survival mode, I guess is the way to put it


and then


There was so much that I just couldn't comprehend. But like everything else, there was no set attribution to why I couldn't. So all through school. It was, well, he just needs to focus more. He needs to find himself. He needs to just work harder. You know, he has the potential to do this and


Betsy Furler  8:34  

write some but they were seeing you as a smart kid, but they couldn't figure out what avenue to reach you.


Ron Kerns  8:42  

Right? Because nobody knew anything about any of this sector. Right, right. So I just


kind of muddle through and


past I guess


And so


there was a, I remember, yeah, so Um, so yeah, so that was basically school for me.


Betsy Furler  9:12  

And did you go to college after high school?


Ron Kerns  9:16  

After high school I did. I didn't go to college, I had a very difficult time trying to figure out exactly what it is I wanted to do.


And then


I didn't even really pick even art classes when I was in high school, or anything like that. My older sister in the meantime, we had been going to this small business school in northern Michigan.




it was kind of my


mindset that a,


I knew in the back of my mind that going to a much smaller school. Were probably be better for me which it was


and then


going to school where my sister was already


wouldn't hurt either.


So I kind of focused it on Northwood University, which is a school in Midland, Michigan. And I looked at their offerings, and I saw the advertising marketing program. And I thought, Boy, that sounds like something that could be interested in. So and I realized that they were going to have a day for potential students in that program. So we went up there in and


then I was so


it was just seemed like to be a really good fit for what I wanted to do. And So I went there and did find it was


from there by the chairman of the apartment


was a huge factor in me doing what I do today. He hit his background, because that played a big part of his background was in the 50s 60s and into early 70s. Working with being working when advertising for Ford and Lincoln mercury.


He was a major.


He was the he was the creative director for when the Ford Mustang first was introduced. Oh, wow. And other other monumental advertising campaigns and such over the years through that time period. So When he would come to class, he would bring in all of these old big boards and storyboards of all of these campaigns that he worked on when he was in the business. And using that as an illustration for what he was teaching that day or whatever. And so one day, he sat me down and he said, Have you ever thought about going to art school? No, I've never had an art class in my life. And he goes in and he showed me all the stuff that I had done as projects in his classes and said, you really should think about it. So um, I did and, and after getting my advertising marketing degree there, I went to art school in Cincinnati, and did very well there. And then it's through that I earned an internship with Cambodia. Well, Detroit. They were the Advertising Agency at the time for Chevrolet. And so, especially with that with once I earned the internship there. I just did that really solidified that, wow, I'm, I'm where I want to be.


Betsy Furler  13:19  

That's amazing. And it kind of shows that there can be one person in our life that we run across that can have such a large impact. You know, obviously he saw that talent in you and was able to communicate it to you know, you Yeah, really? That that was she was so pivotal in your life and sounds like Yeah, definitely. Um, so how did you finally get diagnosed? what led up to the diagnosis?


Ron Kerns  13:52  

That's it. That's quite an interesting story. I've been interviewed about that before because it's such an odd story. Before I began to suspect that I was that I was autistic, I would have never have guessed. Um, anyway, so it was around 2011 when I was watching the show parenthood on NBC, huh? And we watched from know when Elizabeth recently aired from the very first episode. I was familiar with a movie that had come out us before, so I thought it'd be a good something nice to watch. So, um, as the episodes went on long, and there was that kid max who eventually got diagnosed on the show. I was just sitting there watching and watching and going, man.


He was


thinking, he is a lot like I was when I was a kid. Uh huh. And parent teacher conferences his parents would have won over that whole Same thing with not having Well, he's got so much potential for he just used to focus on the road. And then having all that same conversations, it was just like no.


mean it was like me being on the show.


And so one just just one night. I was like, Okay, that's it. So I was just sitting on the, on the couch, I grabbed my laptop and I was sitting there watching show I started Googling, like, undiagnosed autism, adult saroo, something like that. And as soon as I hit return, it just, that's just when the light bulb went off. And I started seeing what was out there about this and starting to reading the list of You just might be artistic F and then you have the list of different characteristics or traits. And it was like, Oh, my goodness.






Betsy Furler  16:24  

well, that's really interesting.


Ron Kerns  16:27  

So while doing the googling, I came across a title of a book.


The book is,


which I recommend everybody by the way, it's a book called pretending to be normal, written by Leann holiday Willie, and she was also diagnosed later in life and like in her mid 30s. Mm hmm. And, but when I saw that when I saw just the name of the book, pretending to be normal. was like, that's me. Cuz especially in the workplace, it just always feeling out of place, like an intruder, and all that stuff. I always just, and I never really could put my finger on it. But when I stopped pretending to be normal, I was like, that's it.


And, and so I just felt like that's what you've been


Betsy Furler  17:27  

doing your whole life.


Ron Kerns  17:29  

Exactly. And so, so and so with that.


I just dug in and got more and more and then in 2014 a couple years later, it came to a point to where I was pretty much self diagnosed at the time. And I just knew that in order to get any kind of support services, that kind of thing, you know, I needed an official diagnosis


because at the time I was


without a job.


I has


my throughout my career while I've done some pretty cool stuff and have worked with some great clients and done some great projects. My career has also been huge difficulties landing a job when I needed to get one. The past decade 2010 to 2020 I was unemployed without a full time job for seven of those 10 years. Wow. I'm thankfully doing what I do, I can I was able to kind of scrape by doing freelance work. And




it says that


was getting them from a diagnosis got me in This with this nonprofit that was in Dallas that helps people with autism and other similar things, you know, help provide some assistance with no landing shops or work. So


Betsy Furler  19:15  

yeah, that's a great point. I, I, I'm really passionate about workplace accommodations and understanding in the workplace about diversity. But it's a really great point because I often say to parents, yes, you need to get this diagnosis for your child, if nothing else, but for the services. But I, you know, we don't think about that as an adult, that there are still services out there that you can access but only if you have


Ron Kerns  19:42  

the diagnosis. Yeah. And unfortunately, for adults, they're very, very hard to find because everything is geared towards children. I even I even had a hard time finding a provider that would do an assessment or evaluation for me Because I was an adult


Betsy Furler  20:03  

Yeah, and not about that area and that was probably expensive as well.


Ron Kerns  20:09  

Um, I got lucky on that, um, during this entire time of struggling to find a job and knowing that was self diagnosed,


I got a


wreck. I get somebody I know through one of my facebook group artistic Facebook groups messaged me one day and she said, Here this, this place might be able to help you out with the whole job thing. And it was a agency for the state of Texas called Texas Department of the system and Rehabilitative Services and our health, those with disabilities and such to find appropriate work. So I said oh, well that could they could possibly help. So I made it, I made a appointment with the person there at the office, which wasn't too terribly far away from home. And I went there, and and then she started asking me about my diagnosis as well I don't have one yet. And then she proceeded, explain that you're having a diagnosis is necessary because to be eligible, so you can determine eligibility for services. And then she said, because you came to us seeking services, will give you a list of providers, and we will provide you with that assessment to determine whether or not you're eligible, which means getting the diagnosis, right. So um,


I just got lucky with that and I'm


in so I Just the assessment and it was all taken care of by that state agency.


Betsy Furler  22:07  

And now for people who are listening and might be in the state of Texas, it's now called the Texas Workforce Commission. They change their name a few years ago. So


Ron Kerns  22:16  

yeah, I remember when they did that. Yeah, they kind of melded together with the Workforce Commission. Yes.


Betsy Furler  22:21  

Yeah. Yeah. So well, that's the I hadn't even thought about that as an option for people that thank you for bringing that up. That is helpful. So once you got the diagnosis, how did that change your life?


Ron Kerns  22:36  

Everything all of a sudden made sense.


Yeah, it was just it was just so much. It's almost like overwhelming for a while. Even looking back at, you know, being autistic, one of the things one trait is being able to vividly remember Member finnstrom had many many, many, many years ago, to me, our youngest age and and just thinking back at all these little different




And then now I know why or how I did that or this or whatever. And now it just like just makes so much more sense. It's it's almost indescribable


Betsy Furler  23:34  

and I think one thing that's so remarkable is that a lot of people think that people who are autistic don't have much self insight. And you diagnosed yourself on by by being able to look inside yourself and see your traits and other people. I think it's a I you know, I think it kind of breaks the surface. Yeah, type of what it's like to be autistic.


Ron Kerns  24:03  

Actually, it's work. It's quite common really for people for autistic people to be introspective, because


Betsy Furler  24:10  

i i agree. I think they I think it is. But I think it's a stereotype that Yeah, you're not that people with autism are not introspective. from working with lots of people who are autistic over the years, I have found it to be totally the opposite, like, so it makes sense to me that you would be able to do that.


Ron Kerns  24:33  

Right? Because right now, amen. It's quite, it's becoming more and more common for like adults like me to finally get that diagnosis. And probably one of the more common ways that adults are realizing that Ooh, maybe I should go get assessed or evaluated is they first have a child who is diagnosed Once or child gets diagnosed, they're like, Man, that child's always been just like me. I wonder you know if they have the same traits and difficulties or problems and and so once the kids diagnosed it's not easy stuff to, to say a person No. More and more. It's becoming more widely believed that autism itself is genetic. I for instance, I can I even know my father passed away in 2011 before I was diagnosed, I can almost guarantee you that if he would have gotten us assessed somewhere along the way, he would have been diagnosed. Right? Right. Just knowing how that all happened and all of that kind of stuff.


Betsy Furler  25:56  

How do you think that your autism allows you to be successful in what you're doing


Ron Kerns  26:06  

can sometimes be a tough one because especially with all my job in career difficulties with having a job and retaining the job, it's can be very hard to find that what's positive about a Geass? so often I see the negative.


Betsy Furler  26:34  

Right, right.


Ron Kerns  26:36  

And then a few years after I was diagnosed, I saw the movie


saw the movie.


Thinking in pictures.


The story about Temple Grandin. Yes. And that just blew my mind. It was like that's a that's another So, I've always done that, but never realized how or why. And so


that ties in


perfectly with me being a graphic designer, I think in pictures,


Betsy Furler  27:16  

right. So that makes that job, your career, the perfect career free for your brain. And you kind of accidentally happened upon it. The


Ron Kerns  27:30  

the difficulty lies in


being in the marketing, corporate communications field. So much of it is


personality driven,


Betsy Furler  27:49  

right, relationship and all of that's


Ron Kerns  27:54  

Miss so that's what's really been the hindrance more than anything. great example of that is, you know how I was, before I got this job at the university. I was without a full time job for five years. And so last my last full time job in 2013 1313. And then


anyway, so it was during that time when I was


out and I was constantly getting interviewed, it wasn't like I had a terrible habit, bad resume and I was constantly getting new people said that it was in the interviewing process.


It was the interview and that would always be the barrier.






I was also from the freelancing. I did the I did an annual report for an organization in Baltimore called abilities network in 2014 2015 From like that, and I did an annual report for the Arctic, North Texas, and about the same time, maybe a little bit after. So here I was, I was designing and creating these annual reports for these large organizations. And these are projects that it would typically be done by a large team of designers with the nice, top design firms. And I was doing them all on my own. highly acclaimed, I was winning awards, you name it. And yet I was still having difficulty in finding a job.


And that was the frustrating part of it.


I knew I could do the work, but it was just getting past it in the whole interviewing thing was a massive hurdle. So in 2004, so 2016 comes around, I had a couple of interviews that were really should have been a slam dunk.


My one of my previous jobs was with


one of my previous jobs was with a


multinational veterinary pharmaceutical company.


I was the art director and graphic designer for the entire consumer brands division, I was a sole designer. So all of the packaging, point of purchase displays, advertising marketing, you name it was all done by me. And so all of my work was seen and put within Petco and PetSmart all over the country. And, um, and so then that job ended in 2009. But then, when I was in sometime in early 2016,


I was able to interview for a job with a


local chain in Dallas, a chain of veterinary clinics, who also had their own private label branded products that they would sell within their clinics. So it would be marketing the clinics and and the packaging and all of this all of the stuff for the products they had. And I was like, How can I not get this?


Right now that's just what you've been doing basically.


And I didn't get it. And I got some very good sets the flimsiest flimsiest excuses to why they chose somebody else. And that's what pretty much and so I was unemployed for almost five years at the time. We were getting close to getting foreclosed on our house. And in addition to that, my My wife's dad who was living who had lived in northern Arkansas for many years. At that time. His wife had passed away. And so he was up here all by himself. We were several, we were 810 hour drive away. And so she was certainly like, oh, wouldn't it be nice if we could up there be up near my dad, all that kind of stuff. And we'd always love the area. And I thought, well, maybe once I retire, we can move up here because there's really no jobs for somebody like me around here. Uh huh. But once those job opportunities just kind of continued coming and going away and I, we came to the conclusion, especially with the foreclosure house. It was like, let's just get out of here. I'm like, I'm done. got going. So I'm We sold the house. Thankfully, we avoid foreclosure and the market Dallas was just going crazy. So we we did quite well on the house in the long run. And so I did be opposite of what you would think instead of staying in an area where there's countless jobs, I came to an area where there's a mere handful of jobs. And so I was doing the tons of freelancing at the time so I figured hey, I could get by a few minutes and we could while just working from here at the office phone and, and doing what I do. So for two for two years, that's what I did. I just worked from home, doing my work for my clients from wherever in the world they were. And that worked just fine. And and then I saw on an on host one day for the job. at Missouri State, it was so perfect. That was perfect job. So my whole mindset was what


I knew would eventually happen was


how many other people could their candidates could they have possibly been have had my background experience applying for this job. We live in this extremely remote and rural area. Right, right. And


so I go to the interview


and it's a panel interview about six or seven people. And one of the people read this statement about how the university values, diversity, inclusion, and, and all of that kind of stuff. So I thought, Okay, that sounds great. And then came to the point where I showed him my portfolio and they were raving about my portfolio and the stuff I was showing enough work I've done in the past. And so then then it came to strengths and weaknesses, asked me about my strengths and weaknesses. And so that's what I had a pretty good idea that they would be perfectly fine with it. So I said, well, the weaknesses that goes along with


me learning I was autistic just a few years ago. And


it kind of went into my strengths and weaknesses, as far as you know, being a graphic designer, that sort of thing. So that was one of the few times I know. That's always a big conundrum for people who are on the spectrum, when the right is


Betsy Furler  35:57  

whether you disclose your Yeah, quote unquote disability or not just


Ron Kerns  36:03  

the disposer you to try to fake it.


Betsy Furler  36:05  

right all right.


Ron Kerns  36:07  

It was at that point to where I felt comfortable enough. I knew that of course, I knew from the get go like this is a major university they almost certainly are going to be understanding and even somewhat appreciate the fact that I've accomplished what I what I've done and being artistic. Mm hmm. And and so then that's what happened and, and I got the job.


Betsy Furler  36:38  

That's amazing. I think that I think disclosing your condition was absolutely the right thing to do. proud that probably got you the job because then they realized


Ron Kerns  36:51  



Betsy Furler  36:52  

you know, the things about the interview that maybe you're the things that you do or say during an interview that maybe wouldn't get you the job in the past. They're like, Ah, that's why his brain works in this way. And he gave us the interview, clearly and then and then ended up with a job that is a great fit for you.


Ron Kerns  37:17  

Yeah. And a lot of it was just having that feel for the people that were there. No. Had a good feeling that Okay, there. It's going to be okay to mention it. And, you know, it just, it's, it's no, so whenever somebody brings it up is like, it just depends. Yeah, because I can think of other times in the other jobs I've had to where I would mention it. So I'm on my first. So after I got the notification that just you have the job. I contacted my caseworker with the agency in Dallas who is a, it's a organization called lunch ability. And they're in Dallas. And they're now merged with another organization called my possibilities. And they help people just like me find appropriate jobs and work. And so I called my caseworker. And of course, she was excited and very thrilled that I finally landed the job. And so we talked through the one thing that we've always wanted to talk through was, okay, I have the job now. And, you know, making sure that no one can I had everything, all my ducks in a row for that first day, week, month, because how important it is to kind of get it off to a good start. And so we were able to talk through all of that. And so then on my first day or so, I'm kind of set my manager down and Well, as you know, I'm autistic. And I said I and I explained to her that I really didn't need any really accommodations really a whole lot. But I gave her a list of things to keep in mind. For thankfully, I do have my own office with the door. So I said no, quite often, I'll have the door closed, depending on what's going on elsewhere in the area there. I try to keep it open. My lights, my fluorescent lights are always off all the time. She even bought me on this small little desk area. Because I will I think for the huge I have a huge massive window on one side of the office. That's plenty of daylight and most times, but I'm really I'm really cloudy days. I have a little desperate that you got me help with light. That's not nearly as bright as those big fluorescent things. Right? Right. I'm just told her my difficulties with the whole executive functioning thing with, you know, organizing, organizing and prioritizing projects and work. And that can sometimes have


20 projects in varying degrees




in the queue


20 years old projects and varying degrees of completion or, and that sort of thing. And so she's always been very helpful with never


hesitated to


help in any way when I've come to her and say, again, we talked about this from insert, make sure you know that. I'm working on the right projects at the right time for this because I have a lot going on at the moment, or whatever. And so just share her being very, extremely Understanding and patient with me is just been, it's been a huge


Betsy Furler  41:06  

well, and that sounds like you have there, you have some accommodations at work, but they're not expensive or big deal type of accommodations. They're things that make your life so much easier and allow you to do your best work. But it also wasn't super expensive for the university to put into place. And it probably actually that kind of back and forth on deadlines and, you know, possibly, you know, asking her to break down tasks or, you know, kind of getting her feedback on that. That's great communication for anybody.


Ron Kerns  41:47  

Right. And so, then some of it goes back to learning. Things are learning difficulties now that I know I'm watching Stick. For instance, before I was artistic, I never would have never thought to get your plugs for when I'm in a crowded restaurant, I just grin and bear that. And then and then been an artistic adult Facebook group. People mentioned here places. And I was like, wow, that could actually be a really cool idea. Now I have several sets that I carry with me. So I'm never without a pair. Because I've never know when and where I'm going to be. And and it's like, well, why haven't I thought of this before?


Betsy Furler  42:38  

inexpensive things that you can do and easy to do and make the world a difference. Right. Right. Right. And so


Ron Kerns  42:45  

then with the accommodations, I'm a lot of I've read a lot lately about standup desks,


dusted can put on your desk and then raise up to where you can stand in kind of Move around a bit more and all that. And so that's what I have. So I talked with my manager about that. And so what is being ordered for me right now?


That's awesome.


To get one of those, so that would that is I think that will be helpful.


Betsy Furler  43:19  

Yeah. Yeah. That's amazing. I'm so glad you found that job and you made that leap of faith to move from Dallas to rural Arkansas and it sounds like that was just the best move you could have made.


Ron Kerns  43:35  

One thing I just thought of about the move to Arkansas was after I got diagnosed


sometime or along the way I started


having meltdowns and panic attacks like while driving and traffic. Safety imagine the freeways and highways and roads in Dallas are Always very congested. just crazy as crazy as can be.


Yeah, and


the meltdowns and all of that we're amplifying. And that was something that was an eye. I gave up driving for the last couple years we were there as much as I could think he lived fairly close to the train station where I could take the train into downtown or wherever I needed to go. And that was another factor in the moving here was she I wonder how it would be if we moved out of this sensory overload of the city and out there to where it's calmer and the traffic is almost non existent. Right little thing. And so I'm just with In a few months, my wife and I had the conversations like the changes almost instant.


I'm just the change of environment.


It was just amazing.


Betsy Furler  45:13  

That Yeah, that's a good point. I was actually thinking about that for myself the other day cuz I live in Houston, Texas, and traffic is terrible. And it's like, you know, I, I wonder, you know what it would be like, if we didn't have to have this traffic, we didn't have to be on traffic all the time. And I think we will eventually move out someplace that is not as bad because I think we're all of our brains. It's not good. You know? So that's, yeah, that but that is if if sensory overload is a problem for you, traffic is and just the big city bustle. That's a lot of that's a lot of sensory information you're having to process Maybe not for any good reason.


Ron Kerns  46:03  

Yeah, again, that's just something that has.


Because there's a there's a thing called it's autism fatigue, I think is a word for it. And so that was something that started popping up. And so basically the idea that I was handling all of that for years,


fairly well.


But having the mask and camouflaging Bailey all the time constantly, constantly becomes the point when you come to a certain age when you just the mask starts slipping and you just can't have it on as much all the time. Uh huh. And, and so that is what I really think kind of was happening. Just started losing the ability to tolerate a That all the time because it just can't keep the mask on all the time as much because it's because as you get older, it becomes more exhausting more effort to do that day in and day out.


Betsy Furler  47:13  

Right and then you're taking your energy that you could be using at work and with your family and all of that. You're having to use that energy to try to to put the keep that mask on for the with the sensory stimulation. Well that I'm I am so glad you moved to Arkansas. I think that was such a great I think that was such a great thing. And I I loved hearing your story and your your later in life life diagnosis. I think this interview is going to help so many people that are listening to my show, and how can people get in touch with you if they want to learn more about you.


Ron Kerns  47:58  

I'm pretty much everywhere. In Social media. Ron turns Kieran s on Facebook. They can go to my website, studio Kearns that. I'm, I'm very active on LinkedIn. You can find me there round Ronald.


Ronald Kearns. Um


or just send me an email at Ron at Studio Kearns calm.


Betsy Furler  48:31  

Awesome. I will put all of that in my show notes and the book suggestion because I think that I'm going to I haven't ever read that book either. I'm gonna I'm gonna read it. I'll probably listen to it on Audible, but I


Ron Kerns  48:44  

pretended to be normal. Yeah, definitely. Another book that's also along the same premise that I found it. really helpful was john elder Robison, his book


Look me in the eye.


Betsy Furler  49:03  

Yes, yes, that's a good one.


Ron Kerns  49:07  

Both of those help was so helpful to me because, you know, both were on the same premise about this is how my life was. And then I found that later in life I was like


Betsy Furler  49:18  

I will say, well, I'll put both of those in the show notes. And thank you so much for joining me today. You were a wonderful interview and great information for my for my audience.


Ron Kerns  49:34  

Thanks for having me.


Betsy Furler  49:35  

Yes, have a great day. You too and audience Thank you for listening and please subscribe to the show. You can also follow me on social media at Betsy Furler f you are le er or for all abilities.