Do you remember?
Before the big bloggers, the sponsors, the adverts and the competitive edge of Pinterest perfectionism there was a community of friendly bloggers. It was a place where we found connection with others who were walking a similar path to our own. It was a place we could find friendship with people who had similar interests, and it was a place where there weren’t any trolls. Sitting down to write a post was as easy as writing an email to a friend.
I miss those days. I miss those bloggers.
Yesterday I was reminded of just how much I loved the blogosphere when a friend/author and fellow blogger posted me this link of a list from 2012.
I’m on that list, I’m number 7.
When seeing the list I actually cried and struggled to process. A lot of my Autism blogger friends no longer write and who I was, how I wrote back in 2012 holds a special place in my heart that I miss deeply. I also felt that I have let slip away a special interest and the joy of writing because of worrying too much about what other people think of me.
I got a message from a lady I met last week, her message was just what I needed to read. The message said, ” Thank you Lisa, I’ve learnt so much about myself from you xXx” (This was from a lady who suspects she has Aspergers.)
It made me think a lot, it made me ponder to why I had stopped writing and it made me feel deeply for other females undiagnosed in their 40’s who are still trying to find a way to fit. Then I went to find one of my most helpful posts that I read a lot when I struggle to remember why I feel so alien and why I constantly get so hurt.
I’m not ashamed of my Aspie traits.
Knowing I have Aspergers answers all the questions that have bogged my life. It’s just that it’s a lot easier to pretend to be NT and hide my feelings so no one else can hurt me. I can’t help but feel that hiding isn’t the answer and that I can push past the fear if I press into my faith.
This is who I am…
(Post from 2012)
SPD,EFD,OCD & all that jazz!
I paced around my house this morning, talking to myself. Motivating myself to actually sit at my pc and write. I know when I need to write because I can find a thousand other creative things to do with my hands but my mind keeps speaking and looping on the words.
Writing for me is part of my process, a part of my healing from past hurts. It is also a way for me to move forward. Writing is my deliverer from
EFD (Executive Function Disorder)
SPD (Sensory Processing Disorder)
OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder)
All these “disorders” but still I keep going!
I have found my own way, it takes me longer and I might seem to get stuck at times or repeat myself, but I will get there eventually. What my brain cannot execute in the neurotypical way, my reflective reviews, journaling, ANT’s charts and blogging will help me sort through the fluff and confusion. I find the backbone, the root and the will.
Writing helps me to find my confidence in a world where I am constantly trying to learn an ever changing language. Favoured items are static they are easy to comprehend and automatically will gain trust and care. Animals can be studied and act in a predictable way most of the time with a need for self care. People are constantly changing they are unpredictable and fascinating. Change can cause me major insecurity, anxiety and even paranoia when I am not focused on helping myself but allowing myself to just drift along.
Sharing is like my accountability, it’s like me opening up a covenant I make with myself. In my openness and honesty I can no-longer keep making excuses and finding ways out.
A way out of what?
Honestly…I’m still coming to terms with not being able to fit!
That’s right, I’m still coming to terms with not being able to fit! It is so much easier to take my stroppy teenage view and think that people are just plan nasty. But I don’t believe they are, I know that there are a lot of lovely people in this world. Growing up undiagnosed without any early intervention has caused me deep scars. I will not let my past define who I am today, or who I am growing into tomorrow.
I document me because my process might help another
I went to see a psychologist a few weeks ago and the main thing I took away from this meeting was how deeply I hurt from always feeling socially isolated. Growing up always being the onlooker that would have loved to have had just one true friend. To have always been seeking deep and loyal friendship but never understood why I got left out. I now have to fight the mental scar of never really feeling that I am acceptable.
I have wonderful online friendships
They are with the most beautiful and loving people and I am so very grateful for each and every one of them. However in my everyday life I have surface level acquaintanceships where I can never really be myself. I still wear the mask.
I know how to look like I fit
I can look like I fit that well no-one even notices how much I am struggling. I found my own way of hiding in the mass, I’m the quiet observer that speaks when spoken to. I have lots of personas I can use for different environments. They are all so very well rehearsed within the loops and replays predicted in my mind. When in unfamiliar circumstances I pass as shy with a touch of eccentric, but that is not who I truly am. Truth being told being part of the social norm means I am forever treading water, swimming against the current, feeling out of my depth and it is so mentally draining and such bloody hard work.
My shutdowns have become a place of comfort
Within a shutdown I can block out everything, everyone and every thought. I know in this place that I can also block out me as I take a step away.
Over the years I have learned to switch off me so that I can focus on others and show the empathy, sympathy that I have been told I don’t understand. I have learned to take on another’s pain and carry it inside as to not be uncaring. SPD makes sure I feel it too. I didn’t realise that for most people it doesn’t physically hurt when they cry. I didn’t cry for many years when I shut out and shutdown to people. I can understand feelings, I have my understanding of empathy and I feel pain for others within me. I have always understood and I have always felt but I had to learn to show and express in the appropriate way. I have learned to show social kindness to others by being unkind to me.
I can forget to switch me back on
I then lose myself in the maze of life and the passion of people puzzles. My brain loves puzzles, my brain loves finding answers, my heart wants to love and feel loved. People are not puzzles and trying to help is not always what is needed. This is not logical in my mind but I learned to not speak and just to show a certain facial expression I learned from watching my Mom.
I get so busy pleasing others, being who I think they want me to be, that I simply forget to be me. I need to remember to find grounding. I need to remember to return to self. I need to remember that I am worth knowing. I need to remember that I am a unique and loving individual. I need to remember to find my safe place. My Mom was my safe place and without her I can feel very lost. I can find comfort and safety within my faith most of the time. I can also find my safe place when I find me again within my special interests.
What stops me?
I’m still coming to terms with being a dyslexic aspergic geek!
So this is my next step
I need to let the geek out, I need to let me be me.
Face to face female friendships are so socially confusing for me. My geeky intensity and passion for interest is avoided by most NT women. I totally get this and that’s why I don’t let me out very often. When I do I have a wonderful time just being myself.
Let’s face fact though, Aspie women are good at hiding, we are excellent actresses. We learn how to fit or not be seen. When we do get real and some polite person chats and makes us feel accepted, we get excited and forget to hold back a little, we think we have found a friend and can’t wait to see them again. Then we are avoided and the pain we feel from rejection brings back every foul memory from every negative loop we have.
We don’t do the chit chat well. We tend to be too honest and open. We take the conversation to a level that stimulates our own mind without realising we make others uncomfortable. I mean who really wants to get deep and intense about …(insert your own special interests here)… writing, poetry, art, spirituality, ASD’s, animals, fishes, quotes, images, blogging, fantasy and trees.
I find companionship within the blogosphere and I LOVE it
One thing I don’t have is face to face communication with like minded friends.
For any future friends this is who I am.
- I need to feel accepted and loved for just being me.
- I need friends who understand I can’t always maintain eye contact but it doesn’t mean I’m not interested.
- I sometimes need to be intense, it’s how my mind stays focused.
- I will drift off into daydreams and tangent thoughts but it doesn’t mean I’m not listening.
- I sometimes just need to be quiet and I need you to be quiet with me while I think.
- Just because I stop talking doesn’t mean I have finished expressing.
- I want to be a good friend, I will think of your needs more than my own at times which can make me somewhat annoying.
- I can get very insecure and feel my ways have hurt you, I fear rejection so I over compensate by being too open and over loving.
- I am honest and I care deeply
- I look for what is good in a person but I can be rather naive and gullible.
- I can be very silly and giggley at times, in these times I may seem insensitive to your needs so I need you to tell me if you need me to be sensible.
- I won’t just pick up on your feelings by looking at your face.
- I need to be able to trust, without trust I can’t function within friendship.
I know that God will help me find a way forward. I’m just sharing as I process.
Love and hugs. xx