#WeekendCoffeeShare: Last Day of Autism Awareness

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that I’m mildly ashamed of myself for not speaking up more about Autism and Asperger’s Syndrome and life on the spectrum. I know to those of you who follow, it probably seems like it’s one of the only things I talk about, especially now that we know for sure it’s not all just in my head, but IRL, I’ve tried so hard not to make people aware of it (mostly because I wasn’t really aware of it) that I’ve given myself an uphill battle.

This month (April) was Autism Awareness month. It was also poetry month. I did more poetry than talking about Autism, and I feel a little wrong about that. Wrong because I know first hand the stigma that is associated with it. Telling people I’m on the spectrum gets me head shakes and mutterings of “are you sure?” It’s scared off more than one guy, and yet it somehow gave one guy hope where there should be none as he assumed that my lack of attraction for him was somehow attached to my inability to get his jokes and so I’d eventually come around.

But it’s my story, and I should be telling it.

A pseudo-administrator (I don’t know her official title) came by my room to see how we’d decorated the walls as part of our Anticipation Activity for Brave New World…

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And she asked me how I was and what was going on with me; was I feeling alright? So I told her, all of it, no filter, no attempts to hold it back or censor myself. I didn’t struggle to be neurotypical. I just let it all out about how I was learning so much about myself through this and how I can see how this condition limited me all my life, giving me strengths that weren’t recognized and yet also making certain things very very difficult and I was never labeled. Never given accommodations.

She was someone who helps with ESL (English as a Second Language), and she told me she hoped that I would share that story with the kids, because it just proves that people can be successful even if no one knows they’re struggling.

I wish I knew how to start conversations about that sort of thing. I mean, without it sounding like I’m trying to brag about being good at something, or make excuses for being not good at something. I don’t want it to become a crutch, but I do notice myself bringing it up more than I’d like, and not always in a good way.

“Oh no, it’s not that your joke wasn’t funny; I just don’t get jokes because I’m an Aspie.”

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That one happens a lot. For all I know the other person’s jokes may just not be funny…

Hopefully, if we were having coffee I wouldn’t have to say that to you!

But if we were having coffee, I’d ask you how your week was, and then tell you how the highlight of my week was Thursday night’s virtual tea party. We discussed rejection and it was rather fun! Had some different people from before, and some came back. Seems the general consensus is that ghosting absolutely sucks!

The only time it is acceptable is if you truly believe the other person is dangerous.

And several of us were of the opinion that you should never take an ex back. I know I’ve done it before, and I know that there are one or two that I’d still take back if they seemed legitimately repentant.

Also, we’re all very against the idea of revenge. Well, not the idea of it… but the actual practice of it. Seems the idea of it is quite healthy; it’s the acting on it that’s damaging.

And there was one particular question that came up that was rather interesting:

It’s a good question! Is there any useful, justifiable purpose to revenge? Or is it solely self-serving to make ourselves feel better?

It was still a small enough group that I felt like I was able to handle it. And the after party was nice. Found out one of my Twitter friends has a book coming out soon! You should definitely follow her and see what she’s all about…not just for her book! She’s actually a lot of fun! Last week in another chat, we’d discussed donuts and wine. Like, together… it was good fun!

It’s a New Adult book, which is a genre I’m interested in but not sure I could write it. I had wanted to once, but never finished it. I’m bad about that.

I really do struggle with finishing some of the things that I start. Anybody notice that I haven’t posted a poem almost all week? So much for my 100 days project: #100daysofpoemsbyliz!

I’ll still post some, but now that I’ve broken the streak by a lot, I don’t see me getting back on that horse. Poetry is hard to just make up without some sort of catalyst. And I’m not hurting over a break up, or madly in love with anyone, so I’ve got no material to draw from.

The Boy is mostly just a memory now, and I’m even getting to the point where the bad stuff doesn’t seem so bad. Before you freak out, the good stuff doesn’t seem so good either. It’s just stuff that happened.

The Bartender… it’s hard to even remember him now, even though he’s more recent and the feelings were so intense. I have to really think to see some of the facial expressions he’d make, and I don’t randomly think of him and feel his hands on me like a phantom. I don’t get that yearning in the pit of my stomach if I happen upon a post or a picture, or a thing he left at my place. He did leave a book, and the part of me that really thinks his wife needs to know what kind of a jerk he is really wants to mail it to her. But that would be petty, and would be on the verge of spiteful, vengeful, and I don’t need the bad karma.

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The latest Tinderfella is completely non-existent, and since I was fairly convinced he was just dumb, I can’t even say that I miss him.

I suppose, I could tell you that I’m satiated.

I once tried to explain to someone that I’m sort of like a nympho with an off switch… but where romantic emotions are concerned, not just sex. It’s like I need it, crave it, absolutely have to have it in large doses. And then my quota gets filled, and I’m good. I can go months or years and not really even care that I’m not seeing anyone.

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I’ve hit that space now.

While it would be nice to have someone to come home to, to have an actual home that felt comfortable and inviting, with the potential for children and a real life, I’m not craving it at the moment. I don’t need to feel loved right now.

I’m a bit numb about it, actually. Which may or may not be healthy.

I wonder if that has anything to do with the Asperger’s Syndrome? Huh.

Well, now I have something to go and research about myself and my condition. It’s been a great coffee chat. Hope to see you around, and maybe you’ll stop in for our #JustAddTea virtual tea party this Thursday. We’re talking about everything from secret identities to the office gossip.

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Enjoy your weekend!

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One thought on “#WeekendCoffeeShare: Last Day of Autism Awareness

  1. Nice to meet you. It is difficult to find the balance between supporting your “group” be it Asbergers, MS, disability, feminism whatever. Do you treat it like the pimple on the end of your nose and it is always there and finds it’s way into everything you do? Or, does it take more of a back seat? I live with a very rare auto-immune disease which needs any publicity it can get but I have consciously decided to write to a wider audience of people who know that sense of not belonging or feeling different in some way. That’s a lot of people.
    As the time goes by since my diagnosis and I’m still here and getting on with things, albeit very differently to what I’d thought.
    As time goes by, I don’t feel the need to introduce myself with my diagnosis and just be. I can have some trouble procesing things but a smile covers things up most of the time and I use a walking stick on and off.
    Just a few thoughts for you. By the way, you sound very gutsy and courageous to me so well done!
    xx Rowena

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