Autism is overdue to add its own part to the diversity conversation, because the kind of portrayals that it currently gets in the media and our society at large are well-and-truly in need of an overhaul. The world is ripe for achieving a whole new level of acceptance of diversity, in all its many forms and those with autism need to take a seat at that table.
What many people don’t realise is that, to someone born with autism, this is their version of normal and to come to identify and accept your own inherent traits is to “come home”, whatever that may look like to an outside observer. Its as though all the deep enthusiasm you’ve been feigning about your successes pretending to be neurotypical all your life, which by now many of us have got very good at doing (if we haven’t already burned out from the gigantean effort), is finally reclaimed and then unleashed as all this genuine enthusiasm for realising THIS is how you really are. It finally feels authentic and well-fitting, like slipping on a suit of clothing that is tailored to you when all the other ones had been slightly over-tight, twisted, scratchy and, in so many ways, deeply ill-fitting and uncomfortable.
If recovery from chronic illness is like a long-running detective story, with us as its protagonist, this year has felt like one of those chapters that make sense of quite a few things in a series of "a-ha" moments. And though what I have learned in quick succession may very-well have overwhelmed me, it has also enlightened me as in TO LIGHT ME UP with a new degree of self-appreciation and awareness, also clarity as to how certain root circumstances click together to make chronic illness what it is.
When you are an empath, you may tend to walk into a room and find yourself tracking the energy fields of everyone in there...do you relate? And in your relationships, dialling into people's energy over their personality? This comes with inevitable pitfalls...I speak from experience here, as well as playing with some reasons why we might do this in the first place and how we can bring the trait into more balance for far better health.
We all need some sort of containment, a reliable edge to our experiences, to enable us feel held and supported in life...and belief systems can do this for the majority of people (to a point). My neurodiverse way seems to have required that I build by own edges from scratch, plucked from a cacophony of sensory experiences and turned into the life supporting routines, rituals and focal points of my life; some distinctly more supportive than others (but getting there). Exploring the need for edges and how to make them better - Asperger's style.
Adult women who discover they are Aspie’s are like butterflies; for they have been tightly bound in an ever-increasingly alien and limited format for what felt like too long and then, ultimately, the extreme straightjacket effect of some sort of chrysalis experience prior to emerging through their diagnostic epiphany...
Throw-back or way-shower, broken or inspirational, inconvenient or key influencer...and right on time. Diversity is always interesting but, right now, it could be crucial and here's a few thoughts about why.
What if you're not broken, what if you are doing exactly what you know you should be doing, exactly the right way in the right time...
Life with Asperger's is, to me, like taking a long-running series of snapshots with all of your senses...drowning in them. Considering obsessive love of photography as the externalisation of an inbuilt autistic trait.
The common assumption goes that people with Asperger’s lack emotion, are cold and logical, even disengaged but,in the case of women, I suspect this is a textbook misnomer and very far from the truth; though perhaps we feel too weary at the prospect of having to contradict it, as I know I do, since our emotions are not so easily explained by neurotypical criteria. Rather, my exprience and research suggests we have too many emotions; great seething storms of them rolling in; but there's something different going on, to do with how we experience and then decide what to do with them...