Everyday Aspergers Synopsis
The book, Everyday Aspergers, delivers an in-depth firsthand account of life through the eyes of a woman with Asperger’s Syndrome. More than two hundred daily reflections are presented in a chronological journal-style format. These reflections are interwoven between short vignettes written before the author discovered she had Aspergers. The selections were chosen from the well-received blog Everyday Aspergers, which has proven to be an excellent resource for tens of thousands of adults and teens on the autism spectrum. The book is the next step in establishing a further support system and resource for those on the autism spectrum, their families and loved ones, as well as educators, vocational counselors, and those in the mental health profession.
Very few samples of quality literature can be found that reflect the autistic’s every day experience, and the books that are available on the market in a similar genre typically only touch on the surface level and/or are clinical in nature, limited in their scope and depth, or sidetrack past the individual’s thought processes and personal relationships.
The book begins with an open letter, and from there the author explains in brief how the department head at the local university she attends shuns her for announcing her new diagnosis, how she is forced to leave the school, and then later undergoes a series of writings to dislodge the resulting wound to her esteem. The book has an unrestricted flow, integrating diverse writing styles and genres, including philosophical introspection, comedic happenings, non-fiction stories, poetry, affirmations and more. Throughout the writings the author volleys back and forth between wanting to conquer her own mind while also trying simultaneously to accept herself exactly as is. Halfway through her tellings, the author experiences an existential transformation, a change that is reflected through her writing style. It is then her self-acceptance is first seeded and a new phase of her story begins. Though the subject matter is often serious, the continual undertones of humor and wit keep the feel of the book reasonably light. Indeed, the book reflects that of a humorous, educated and philosophical mother, wife and artist, despite her self-proclaimed shortcomings.
The author herself best sums up the primary purpose of the book on the opening page, when she writes: “My hope is that my interwoven journey provides a substantial view of the mind of a woman with Aspergers. It is my further hope that individuals on the autism spectrum, whilst reading these words, gain a sense of support and connection. And most importantly, I wish for those of us living on this little blue planet to recognize we are no longer alone in our often times overwhelming sense of isolation. You are seen. You are understood. And there is hope.”
A primary appeal to the writings is in the author’s method of self-introduction. How through her words she creates a clear picture of life on the autism spectrum without setting herself up as martyr or victim. Her constant strength is evident throughout the stories. Also, with a contagious authenticity, each account stands alone as a small testimony of the autistic journey. The book concludes with a sense of hope, including a touching vignette describing when the author was first called to write. As is the case in real life, her personal challenges are not neatly solved, resolved and tucked away. No matter, in the end the reader is left having had experienced the phenomenal life transitions of a very courageous and transparent human.
Thank you for being here and reading this.
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There is also an Everyday Aspergers Book Project Group that is supporting this journey.
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Book will likely be available in Spring of 2016.