Autism Awareness or up on a soap box

Don’t listen to those who say, “It’s not done that way.” Maybe it’s not, but maybe you will. Don’t listen to those who say, “You’re taking too big a chance.” Michelangelo would have painted the Sistine floor, and it would surely be rubbed out by today. Most importantly, don’t listen when the little voice of fear inside of you rears its ugly head and says, “They’re all smarter than you out there. They’re more talented, they’re taller, blonder, prettier, luckier and have connections…” I firmly believe that if you follow a path that interests you, not to the exclusion of love, sensitivity, and cooperation with others, but with the strength of conviction that you can move others by your own efforts, and do not make success or failure the criteria by which you live, the chances are you’ll be a person worthy of your own respect.
–Neil Simon
The road to ME

A note to self

Spending time with me today. Got my Bible, prayer journal, reflective reviews and I’m just scanning and updating my netbook before I go out. I need to write! Blogging helps me process. I’m sick of the fear that one opinionated person has placed on my writing. Looks like I need to write until I rhyme. Loops are so hard to change, negative people really mess me up.

I drove to a familiar place, a place where I have written many a post, but when I got there I couldn’t face the people. I couldn’t cope with sitting and having yet another coffee alone. Watching women my age chat and laugh with their friends. I sat in my car and cried, then I drove home to pray for a friend who I knew needed me to pray for her.

When I first started blogging

I was very lucky to find a wonderful group of people, all new bloggers and we all became friends. We loved and supported one another in our online Autism community. This was not just a group of Aspies, it was a mix of all kinds of people from all walks of life. I am still friends we some of them but as time has past a few of my blogging friends have moved on. Some of my friends stopped blogging altogether. I still miss them and think of them a lot. I’m Aspie, I find change really hard to adjust too but I get there in the end.

I ventured out when my inbox went quiet

Friendship has been my biggest challenge all my life. Finding these new friends who knew what life is like in the spectrum was a ray of hope for me. As an Aspie, Mom of Aspies and the daughter of an Autistic Father. But when friends go quiet I kind of freak out, I always had a few close friends to help me see past my fears. Recently I haven’t wanted to blog, I haven’t wanted to post and I haven’t wanted to read. There is one sentence that keeps going round and round and I can’t get out of my head.

There are some lovely people who write from the heart what it is like to live in and on the spectrum. Beautiful lovely people who love and accept others for who they are and where they are at. But there are also some people who I feel use the Autism community to fuel there own personal hates. These people like to debate issues and push their opinions regardless of how much they hurt others. I find it so hard to keep sharing who I am in an open and honest way when I know that there are people who mock and cringe at those of us who are sharing our lives.

I am struggling to do something that I love

I know that I should have faith and I know that I should just keep being me but at the moment I hurt too much to be bothered. I share what I live in the hope that I can help. I was happy to do this. I was happy to pour me out and expose who I am and how Autism has been for me in my life. I feel stuck and I don’t know how to move forward.

I read this today on fb

Autism Spectrum Disorder, through my eyes.

Most of us will probably never notice the beauty in the patterns on a cracked sidewalk, or the gorgeous way the sun reflects off an oil slick after the rain. They’ll probably never know what it’s like to immerse yourself in a subject and learn everything about it, and the beauty of having all those facts lined up. They’ll probably never know what it’s like to flap their hands in happiness, or lose yourself in the feel of a cat’s fur. There are lovely things about being autistic, too, just as there must be about being neurotypical. Oh, make no bones about it: It’s difficult. The world’s not set up to operate with autistic people in mind; and autistic people and their families face prejudice every day. But being a happy autistic person isn’t “being brave” or “making the best of it”. It’s quite simply being happy. You don’t have to be ‘normal’ to be happy. ♥

I was thinking today about all the different kinds of magazines there are at the news agents, books in a book store and programs on the TV. I was pondering on the fact that we all have our own taste in what we like to read and how we comprehend in different ways.

I can’t describe my traits using words from a medical book, why? Because I can’t remember the words, I make up my own words and that helps me. There are others like me and how I share helps those who are like me.

  • Why can’t there be more than one way to share what autism is?
  • Why does there have to be divisions when we should be united?
  • Why does it have to be us and them?
  • Why can’t Autism Awareness mean bringing awareness to Autism?
  • Why does there have to be conflict when we all want the same thing?
  • Why?

Autism Awareness

If you have met one person with Autism you have met one person with Autism.

I am not my Dad.

My son and daughter are not me.

We are all unique and all present differently,

I believe that bloggyland is big enough for everyone.

I think bringing awareness to the difficulties and prejudice that all those affected by autism face is what is important not how we say things.

I love to write, I struggle to express who I am in words to faces. Writing is what helps me. Does anyone else want to have a pop at me?

How about writing it in my comments where others can read it.

As always it is the Bible that helps me to keep being me.

This scripture helped me to post today.

Philippians 1:15-18 (NIV)

It is true that some preach Christ out of envy and rivalry, but others out of goodwill. The latter do so out of love, knowing that I am put here for the defence of the gospel. The former preach Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing that they can stir up trouble for me while I am in chains. But what does it matter? The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached. And because of this I rejoice.

Yes, and I will continue to rejoice!

Also….God’s perfect timing.

A poem from my lovely bloggy friend Richard……“Just Be Yourself”

His Eye is on the Sparrow, His hand is on my heart.

Hello my lovely Bloggy friends,

Sometimes you just know when God is speaking to you and other times life can be so noisy we just can’t hear Him. I am a big believer in getting quiet time each day, because I know that if I don’t, it makes my Autistic traits far worse for me to cope with.

This morning as I was reading my favourite Christian blogs I was reminded of an old post of mine. It’s funny how God does that, nothing quite as challenging as seeing your own words. I have been feeling that I needed to find ways of…

“Just being me!” again.

Since coming out Aspie there have been a lot of hurtful things said to me and I have gotten to the point now where I feel I don’t need to explain myself to anyone. People will either accept me for who I am or they won’t.

So I just want to say…Thank you God for loving me.

Also I would like to thank Richard for being just who he is,

“Richard your posts are a blessing my friend.”

This is the link to Richards post, Speaking Silently.

Richard is very real and his sharing of his walk with Jesus is very honest and open.

Love and hugs everyone and enjoy the re-post.

Lisa. xx 🙂

******************************************************************************

His Eye is on the Sparrow.

(November 21, 2010)

When I first started blogging I was in hiding.

I had gotten to a point of near breakdown and the world was just too much for me to handle. I only shared my Art and Poetry to start with. I didn’t really talk to anyone. A very special person came along and started to help me. She became my first friend and helped me to open up and start sharing a little of myself through my blog.

I have made lots of friends through my blog since and you are all very dear to me. Because of the encouragement from bloggyland I am learning to be me.

~

God certainly works in mysterious ways

Who’d have guessed that He would come and find me hiding in the internet…God is so good!

But…I guess He did send a big fishy to fetch Jonah….giggle… I’m, so strange. Where do these thoughts come from???

When my internet first started to play up I sent my lovely friend an email, from my sisters. My friend told me to reach out to God because He will pick me up.

I have been doing this, because I have felt very cut off and really quite alone. I didn’t realise how much we all used the internet it’s just something we do without thinking.

Anyway…..

I prayed about this obviously (in my childlike way) I asked God to switch it back on again, first of all.

“Had a little bit of an Aspie meltdown…or was it a tantrum Lisa?” Thank you little voice, I know. You don’t have to keep butting in. I will tell them.

Then I thought… well what can I learn from this???

Well… now I know!

I love my blog, and all my bloggy friends. I miss going onto YouTube and watching my videos, I can’t watch the TV it causes me to much negative and then it cycles.

I miss reading my friends blogs, seeing how you all are.

I miss my comments and replying to my comments.

I miss searching around on Google looking for cartoons to go with my posts.

I love that I can entertain myself doing this. I often can’t stop giggling while looking.

This morning I woke up and just wanted to sing to God.

I had had a dream, quite a strange dream actually where I was chatting with God.

God said to me, in this dream, that when I sing it comes straight from my heart and sounds beautiful to Him.

Then I said to God, “But I think my voice sounds awful God!”

Then He giggled and said…”By the time it comes to me it is perfect, so keep singing to me.”

So this morning I woke up all excited about singing to God.

I ran downstairs in my Jim-Jams, into the conservatory, grabbed my guitar and sang to Jesus.

I was looking out onto my garden, its autumn here and there are leaves everywhere.

Right outside my window a little girl Sparrow perched on the fence only 3 feet away from me.

She looked straight at me. I could see her little dark eyes. She kept tilting her little head from side to side listening to me sing.

Now I know birds do this, I once had an aviary full of Budgies and I kept Chickens for year. I also had a pet Parrot called Po-Po who I loved so much.

I can tell when a bird is listening.

AND….NO, I am not mad…I know what I saw….giggle.

I carried on singing and kept repeating the song thinking she would fly off soon, but she didn’t.

She just stayed there looking straight at me listening to every word I sang to God. Bless her little sweetness.

Eventually I stopped singing and put my guitar down.  I smiled at her and said, “Thank you,” and I nodded my head to her.

She hopped closer nodded back and flew off.

I just thought WOW….God sent a Sparrow to listen to me sing to Him.

Today I went back to my old Church

I left 18 months ago feeling very misunderstood and quite hurt. I told the people (I needed to tell) that I have Aspergers Syndrome.

I told them how the Church had not been the best environment at times for some of my ways.

I also told them that I love my Christian brothers and sisters all around the world, in fact I love all people, but I am an Aspie and that makes me a little different.

I explained that I will only be doing what I feel God wants me to do, and I will not be made to feel guilty for not always being able to cope with the environment of the Church.

I also said I know God made me this way, and I am just the way I am supposed to be.

I was welcomed back with open arms and they accepted what I said…for now anyway.

SO…..

My Aspie-happy is out again. This time it’s the real one, not the one behind a mask.

I went to Church dressed in my happy clothes, because I am a multi coloured Rainbow.

And

The negativity I carried in my heart for 18 months has been completely turned upside down.

Blogging is certainly helping me, and I thank all of you. XX 🙂

Septic river of religious!

Hello my lovely Bloggy friends,

This post is more of a healing process than anything else. Please read the following message, I found this while on fb yesterday and it really spoke to my heart.

Spiritual Warrior

A good mentor will affirm in public, and correct in private. Your goal should be to help, not hurt. When you rebuke someone in public you humiliate them, destroying their self-esteem. But when you affirm them in public you build their self-esteem and confidence. Of course, your praise should be genuine, not just empty words. By affirming sincerely and publicly, you plant the seeds of growth and greatness in the learner. God has called each of us to run our race and finish it successfully. God has also called us to keep the torch lit and hand it over to the next runner. Don’t merely be satisfied with doing the job; make sure the job keeps getting done by teaching or coaching someone else.

♥ Love & Light Always! ♥

It’s been over twelve years now

But still the septic river of my own religiousness can cause me to freeze.

Today I was in my local supermarket, a lady my age looked straight at me and smiled, nodded in recognition and walked past me. I knew that I knew her from somewhere but in a supermarket I am totally disorientated (How loving is our Heavenly Father) If I would have recognised her I would have been a complete mess.

It took me a while and prayer

Then a visual replay of how I knew this lovely lady.

I was already putting my groceries on the conveyor belt when it hit me how I knew her. She only had a basket and went through very quickly on a self-serve till, I so desperately wanted to talk to her but couldn’t.

My replay went like this…

I’m standing with a group of 4 women, all above me in leadership and I am being challenged and rebuked because of my failure to submit to their leadership. This is backed up by scripture with a slant. It is happening in a public place and I’m aware of others listening, I just take it and feel a total wretch. I didn’t know at this time how harmful scripture can be when used to make a person into a mould of Christianity that has been invented by mankind.

Now I’ll tell you who the lady was

She was a young single Mom that was placed in my group. I had 10 Moms altogether and at the time they were like an extension of my family. I loved them and I loved their kids too. I was in a religious sect and my whole life was centred on being part of what I thought was the only true church.

I wasn’t the one who had “studied the Bible” with her.

She was moved to my group because I had lived the single mom life and could relate to her. Also she lived close to me and we had gone to the same school. We became friends and we did things together with our kids. Her daughter was the same age as my *AJ and there was a lovely little park close to her house where we’d go and chat while the kids played.

She was a confident young mom, who had been through a lot and had gained a sense of protection for herself, her daughter and her home. I was given a set of studies to follow with her, I knew her situation and felt the study was not kind or loving. I refused to hurt her with this manipulation so my group was taken away from me. I’ll reword that, my friends, my sisters in Christ and all the children I loved spending time with were taken away from me.

Those who have lived this life know how close you become and know the pain of this. There is a kind of shunning that goes on in these types of fellowships when you choose to think for yourself.

After I left the sect

I phoned this lady and apologised for anything I may have done or said that may have hurt her. She told me I had never been anything but a friend and she knew how I had been treated. She thanked me for not doing that study with her and told me she no longer went along to this particular church.

God is LOVE; religion is man putting God in a box.

The truth is in the 4 years I was in this sect I was present in that many studies I can’t remember a lot of the women. I can’t remember the things I may have said. I do remember a lot of times feeling I should have spoken up, but out of respect and submission to my elders and leaders (actually it wasn’t respect or submission it was fear) I didn’t speak up. I do remember going home and crying a lot in prayer for the women whose stories were so painful. Their hurt and loneliness, stories of rejection and abuse were SO VERY painful.

I called this post “Septic river of religious!”

I wrote a post not long ago explaining why I had put certain words on hold for approval. I had many comments go into my spam box. I was accused of many things for choosing to do this. The one thing that hurt me and caused me to fear writing. Fear being part of this community here in Bloggyland was a comment that said I was supressing God’s word by not teaching the truth.

Words are powerful they build up and tear down.

I only share what I have lived or what I am going through. I have never claimed to teach or preach. I’m just a Mom trying to find my way sharing my ups and downs. I love God and enjoy sharing my journey, I love meeting others on a similar journey and finding new friends.

I don’t believe that I supress scripture, I just don’t want to misquote or cause harm/hurt by using it to make others believe in the way I do. God gives free will.

But so I can help myself and feel I can write again

Here is the Bible online for anyone who wants to go and have a read.

BibleGateway.com

I love to write it’s my outlet it’s my best way of communicating. It brings me friendship and conversation; it also helps me to process all the thoughts I have in my Wonderfully Wired Aspie brain. It has taken a long time for me to process this but I believe that being made to fear something that God has given is NOT kind or loving so can’t really be from God.

I read some of Revelation today what really helped me was this verse.

Revelation 22:1

The River of Life

Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb

Having a visual of fresh flowing life to the full.

 

Smears on my windows

Image from Google

Hello my lovely Bloggy friends,

I cleaned the windows today!

I know it’s SO interesting isn’t it? But before you run off I had a lot of thoughts while cleaning and a lot of clarity to what I have been feeling. So keep reading and I’ll share what I found helpful.

I really love to write

I know that my spelling isn’t great and I’m so grateful that God inspired someone to create spellcheck. Without spellcheck I wouldn’t have the confidence to blog. But even with spellcheck my spelling, punctuation and grammar are not the best. Those of you who have been reading for a while know how I struggle to feel accepted, you know how I fear rejection and also how my Aspergers and dyslexia cause visual loops and an inability to process or even understand at times.

Longing for communication and connection

I feel that everyone longs for connection, to feel loved and accepted for who they are. People on the spectrum are just the same, we may seem to shy away from friendships but that is because we are misread, misunderstood and we see things differently. We can’t always maintain eye contact because we can’t think/understand/process all that information at the same time. Some of us can speak and act really well, so well in fact we look like we fit. However we have this big aching void inside of us because who we really are is trapped and never allowed to be shown.

I am what is called high functioning and I have learned to conform. Only a very few people really know me, my bloggy friends know more about me than the people I see every day. Communication and connection comes easier for me through writing. Only my close family and one friend can cope with me in a meltdown. I have one friend I allow to see me when I am shutdown. I know she understands me, accepts me and loves me for who I am. I feel very blessed to have the family and friends I have.

So back to cleaning windows

My Aspie brain is very good at dictating a post while I’m busy. Cleaning windows is no exception. I’m quite fussy with windows, I wrote a poem about it once.

Here is the link for anyone wanting a giggle.

When I’m cleaning windows

Those who know me personally, know I could NEVER have an iPad or touchscreen mobile because I see every finger print and have to wipe it off. Finger prints and smears really do drive me mad, it seems they become my total focus. I wish I could change it I really do.

I was cleaning my bedroom windows and making sure I had no smears when I realised how focused I was on the glass and not seeing my cat on the fence looking at me. This reminded me of the time when I was in a religious sect and I was so focused on the scriptures, and making people see them as I did, that I didn’t see the people. I didn’t see their hurt, who they were or how they loved. We are all unique and how we love is unique too.

I was speaking with Mr Locoman about this

We talked about a railway group he knows. There are those who go because they have a deep passion for locomotives, and there are those who know a lot about locomotives. Then there are people who want to learn and people who want to share and those who want to feel part of something.

Each person has equal status but sometimes we can be so caught up in the fingerprints we forget to see through the glass.

I’m being abstract but I’m sure someone will understand me.

I cleaned the windows, hubby cleaned the car

I was driving *AJ and *DWKlymax to the gym this evening. It was dark and as I was driving I noticed a smear on my windscreen. For just a few seconds I stopped looking outwards and focused too much on the imperfection. A teenage girl wearing all black walked out into the road. I am so glad I didn’t focus on the smear for too long. I could have ploughed her down.

I know it’s not the same for everyone

For me though, my Bible can be like this. I believe that God’s word needs to be digested by each of His children in the way He gives to them. We are all created differently and we all hear God in the way He choses to reveal Himself to us and in us.

I learned the hard way not to use scripture to put my point across, who am I anyway, I’m just Lisa, we are all just a mist. If God uses me then I feel blessed by that. The scriptures I share on my blog and with friends are those that inspire me or those that have helped me. My opinion or my interpretation of scripture is for me, I share my ups and my downs. I share how God helps me, how He carries me through my dark times and dances with me in my joy.

That’s right, in my understanding

Our Heavenly Father is the bestest Happy-Dancer there is!

In the words of the song that’s looping in my head while I write this post,

“If you could see what I can see when I’m cleaning windows!”

For me I have to read, inwardly digest through prayer and then live life in His unconditional love. Accepting myself with all my imperfections and loving others for who they are. This is far more of a challenge for me than using scripture.

If I focus on Jesus, He will teach me to see through His eyes and He is the true word of God. I’m learning to see through windows in His way, in the time I have here, before the glorious time of being with Him.

Love and hugs friends.

Lisa. xx 🙂

I love this song, I know I have shared it before!

Shutdown in a Supermarket…The Big Issue?

uptospeednews.co.uk

Hello my lovely Bloggy friends,

It’s no secret that I HATE Supermarkets, they are one of my most horrible of places, closely followed by the library. Notice the title, yep…I shutdown in a Supermarket!

On 14th June 2011, they closed down my Co-op

This was a MASSIVE change for me with my ASD.

In the UK the Co-op is one of the quieter supermarkets. They play very relaxing music and it is never really busy. My Co-op was where I shopped for 24 years, I knew the lay-out, the staff and this made shopping quite easy for me and my kids. We would enjoy dancing and singing in the aisles and scooting on the trolleys. The staff knew my *AJ as a baby and watched him grow up. They also knew my *CAL and knew of her ways.

We had to find a new way

After the Co-op closed I had to find a new supermarket. I tried one close to my home and it wasn’t a good experience. I actually walked straight past one of my close friends and when she called me I hadn’t got a clue who she was. I found that a drive out to a supermarket close to the university was best. This supermarket only really has students in it so the queues are quick. They don’t play any music and they tend not to move things around too often. I take a list and I’m usually fine.

Wanting to be back home

Today, I reached the car park and it was a lot fuller than usual.

I left the kids at home with Mr Locoman. My shopping list was EXTREMELY long, I sat and read through it and prepared my mind for the aisles and where to find things. I said to myself, “I’ll put some music on and pop my earphones in. I’ve coped before, I’ll be fine! We NEED to eat, after all!”

I opened my handbag to find I had forgotten my earphone….oh crap I thought, I want to go home! 😦

So…I sat and prayed for a bit…Then went in faith.

In the first aisle holding a box of cereal.

I’d not long been there when I heard an almighty scream. I mean this was real fear and it made me shake inside. I then heard a massive bang and turned around quickly to see what had caused it. There was a huddle of 3 men wrestling on the floor, in the doorway. All the shoppers just stopped and waited to see what was going on. Then the two big guys stood up and started to drag a young man by his wrists into the store. He had obviously hurt his face by struggling and he was screaming in broken English, “Don’t kill me, I not know what I done! Please let go, I hurt!” He kept struggling and repeating the same thing over and over and over.

I felt like crying, nobody seemed to care

Everyone just carried on with their shopping. The young man was dragged to the back room.

I was trying to process this because I heard him say he didn’t know what he had done wrong. He was being punished and he didn’t know what he had done. He was also bleeding and no one was helping him. I had to try to switch off my feelings and see the facts. They were security guards and they were doing their job. But I kept seeing the fear on his face, seeing him bleeding and hearing him crying with fear. It was in my head and it was starting to loop in my visual replay. I kept hearing his words, “I not know what I done? I not know what I done? I not know what I done?”

I really don’t know how long I was stood processing this, I was on my own.

I realise that he may have tried to steal something but his pain and fear had triggered off a memory for me. The feelings I was feeling were related to my own feelings. I didn’t know if he was or wasn’t telling the truth. He was crying and he was scared.

There is a lady that sells “The Big Issue”

She was stood outside the supermarket, she always is. Usually she will have her little boy with her. He is about 4 years old, I usually get him some chocolate or a packet of crisps out my trolley when I leave. He likes to climbs on the lines of trolleys, he’s very sweet.

Today it was raining and she was stood getting wet under the tree that now has no leaves to shelter her. She never calls out, “Big Issue!” she knows no one sees her. Those who will see her, will go to her. She doesn’t speak English, but she speaks in smiles and with her eyes.

In the car before I drove home

I thought about this post and how I would write it and what would my point be.

So often I stand and stare and wonder/ponder to why the world and people just keep moving?

How come they don’t feel, see or freeze like I do?

Is it just my ASD that causes me to stop and have to process?

Then I thought about school and all the times I froze and had to stare out the window and lose myself in clouds. I couldn’t cope with the shouting of the teachers. I hated hearing the other children being told off. I would zone out and then lock myself in a toilet and wait till I could think again. If I zoned out in a classroom, I was told to pay attention. I was shouted at to pay attention, told I was being lazy. Even told I was being stupid.

I didn’t know I wasn’t paying attention.

For me I get lost in the process and time just goes by.

My Big Issue….I hate supermarkets.

But I’m not living on the street, standing in the rain, watching people who don’t see me!