CINCINNATI — Learning a child has autism can be life-changing for a family; One mother of a child with autism has worked to create a business to help parents like her find time to care for themselves amid the challenges of caring for a child with unique needs.
"It was like, I don't know what to do, I don't know how to function because I never had experience with this so I was just kind of stuck and my mental head space just went out of control," said Faith Baker, mother of an autistic child and founder of Oilsbyfaith.
Baker said the stress of caring for her child led her to chop off her hair; when she was ready to grow it back, she created an oil to help.
She said the product gave her time alone to heal, and not long after it became a small business she called Oilsbyfaith. The company sells growth oils, lip scrubs and beard oils for men.
"My mission behind it is just for you to love your body, your mind and your skin just how you are and know that times will be difficult," said Baker. "You're not always going to get praise or have the time to take care of yourself. But being a mom and knowing that I have to be here present and healthy and mentally healthy for my children I had to take some time for me."
One in 54 children are diagnosed with autism. Sheri Weithman, who works with the non-profit Autism Speaks, said Baker's story is not unlike that of many other parents learning to balance life with the knowledge that their child has autism.
"There is an isolation piece when it comes to autism families, people are often afraid to go out with their children to be seen in public," said Weithman. "So that's why we talk about our Autism Speaks walk."
The walk is where Baker realized her passion to give back to the organization.
"He asked me why I wanted to walk and I said because I want to be able to let my kids know that no matter what I am going to be there in spirit and the physical to help you make it through," said Baker.
She hopes to make a monthly contribution to the organization from the sales from her business, to give purpose to the pain people may feel.