465: Unconditional Love

I love you.
When you are lost, when you are alone, when you are driven away from me by some unknown force.
I love you.
When you are forsaken by your own self and thoughts. When you twist reality into a fantasy that is dark and bleeds of isolation.
I love you.
When you go, I will watch and wait until the nightmares subside and the light beckons. I will wait at the end of the tunnel, at the entrance, at the exit, at the only place you will eventually arrive.
I am here for you; not because you beckoned, not because you desire, not because I expect a single thing.
I am here because I love you.
I love you in a thousand upon a thousand ways.
I love you for your beauty, your deep etched soul, the sunlight that slips through your fingers and glistens on your skin, of happiness to come.
I love the hope that is you; for whenever you falter and fall, you return. You retrace your steps and return.
I watch you without fear of abandonment. Your actions do not make me. Your ways do not change me.
I am you and you are me; yet, we are separate in our choices and visions.
I know who I am, where my seams connect, making me whole, my parts intermingled to form true divinity. And I view you the same. Ever so splendidly made.
In your presence I become more real than I imagined possible; all of me expands and implodes, building contrasting caverns of existence.
When you do not have faith in yourself, I will have faith in you. When you do not have faith in us, I will have faith in our togetherness.
If ever I grow frustrated or worried, know it is the burden I hold, the lasting longing I carry to behold your sorrow erased and your joy sprung anew.
I shall wait outside your threshold through the depths of time.
I shall remain full in my attempt to exist as a stronghold onto myself.
And in this way, I will have done my best.
I will not stand between you and your dreams, you and your freedom, you and your happiness.
I will always abide by your wishes, whatever they be, as I trust your decisions and the makings of your mind. I trust that you have the answers.
I kneel for you, as you kneel for me, both as suitor and servant.
I stand beside you, cheerfully enchanted, cheerfully grateful for your victorious days.
If ever I take you for granted, it is merely my shadow resurfaced, feeding off the illusion of fear. If ever I fail you, it is merely a part of myself forgetting the beauty we are.
Know, if I had to live this life again, and start anew, my hope would be to have you the same. Just as you are. In your gleaming perfection.
I love. I love you. And whatever you choose to do, or be, or say. Whatever you choose to represent as your own existence and truth.
I love you.

~ Samantha Craft, December 2013

love R

464: Triggers lead to Exhaustion

Triggers and ASD

Anything can trigger me; and it doesn’t matter the amount of self-studies, coursework, readings, spiritual meditation, or self-calming techniques that I incorporate.

I sometimes feel like the energy of something or someone actually jumps out at me; as if I am that electron that moves position inside vast space based on the stimuli (observer) that is in close proximity to me. I continue to feel less like a form and more liken to fluctuating matter.

Once I am triggered by an object, action, word, or person, the anxiety kicks in. My body responds in discomfort. Once I recognize the anxiety through bodily sensations, I can search back and find when the trigger started. Then I am able to pinpoint the stimuli which represents the trigger. At this point, I logically dissect what has affected my equilibrium.

This process of backtracking takes anywhere from a few moments to over an hour. This morning the trigger was a photograph of myself, from the winter of 2013, when I was five pounds lighter. Subconsciously, I held onto the thought of having gained weight, and somewhere in my brain I spun this data on the back burner of reasoning. My body responded with increased heart-rate, a sense of fight/flight, and nervousness. I then looped without complete awareness on being too fat and too ugly to be loved.

These are old messages sill stuck in my filter of self-acceptance and self-love. Once I identified the trigger (the photo), I was able to trace my anxiety back, to self-talk myself down from the negative messages, and to begin to reconstruct a more beneficial view of myself.

The issue at hand, for most aspies, is this triggering happens during waking hours continually, and the process of disintanglement becomes exhaustive.

The fact that the triggers affect us is a direct result of our neurological firing. We are born to make connections at high-speed; so quickly in fact, that the processing occurs without our constant recognition. I am tired, because ultimately, I have a bullet-train mind that takes off with me flailing in the air whilst gripping the caboose.

I believe, beyond the sensory processing of our environment, e.g., noises, textures, scents, bodily sensations, tastes in mouth, etc., that the constant processing of triggers leads to the need to retreat into isolation for a season, be it hours or days, perhaps even weeks. At first, I thought I was primarily being fatigued through various physical ailments (hyper-joint mobility syndrome/EDS), the sensory integration challenges, the need to be as honest as feasibly possible by choosing actions that represent the true self, and the constant evaluation and searching for adequate social skills (tone of voice, proximity, flow of conversation, exact verbiage, etc.)

I understand now another true facet of the exhaustion. While I am processing the direct environment about me, and trying my best to function and present myself in a beneficial manner, I am simultaneously struggling both consciously and subconsciously with the various filaments of triggers that have latched onto the factory in the back of my thought process and have remained there, continually spiraling and looping, until a part of me recognizes the presence and takes measures to spit out the residue.

463: Aspergers is not a Disorder

dis·or·der
n.
1. A lack of order or regular arrangement; confusion.
2. A breach of civic order or peace; a public disturbance.
3. An ailment that affects the function of mind or body: eating disorders and substance abuse.
tr.v. dis·or·dered, dis·or·der·ing, dis·or·ders
1. To throw into confusion or disarray.
2. To disturb the normal physical or mental health of; derange.

(source: the free dictionary.com)

Aspergers is not a disorder. It is not an ailment. It is not a malfunction. Aspergers is not equivalent to an eating disorder or to substance abuse, which imply a treatment plan, such as therapy or 12-step, to support and correct the behavior.

Aspergers is not a state of confusion or disarray.

Aspergers is a neurological difference. A difference that is not better or worse, but simply not ordinary and exists outside the familiarity of mainstream’s indoctrinated interpretation of ‘normal.’ Aspergers is a form of high-intelligence which consists of varying degrees of over-analysis, deep complex reasoning, and some ‘unusual’ social behaviors. The social behaviors are not impairments.

A person with Aspergers inspires another to love beyond the limitations of ego, with an unconditional love which is not based on preconceived notions of how one should be according to an onlooker’s self-based interests and desires.

Knowing someone with Aspergers is a blessing, as much as knowing any other individual. We each are divinely made in our uniqueness. We must stop rejecting something or someone for the uncomfortableness it brings the onlooker, and start accepting others for who they are in completion.

Aspergers is a reminder, a wake up call, to all those who say they know how to love. You know love? Then here is a chance to prove it. ~ Sam Craft, Everyday Aspergers

462: Beneath the Skin of Conversation: an Aspie’s Interpretation of Communication

The hardest part of the communication process for me is in the act of sensing others’ expectations of me. In other words, when conversing in written or spoken form I can often detect the way someone expects me to respond in words and actions to his or her words and actions; and as a result, I feel an uncomfortable sensation and pressure to perform and live up to expectations, as if I have unwillingly been written into some theater script.

Sometimes, if I don’t act and sound the way another expects then he or she responds in a manner, e.g., with words, inflection, posture, body movements, tone, etc., that reflect defense or question. Often, during conversing, even online, I feel another person reaching into me: a type of octopus probing.

Before conversing, I prepare myself emotionally and physically for a bombardment of others’ expectations. Not out of defense or fear, but out of the constant exposure, and my resulting adaptation of self. It’s a type of communication assimilation, one in which I wasn’t effectively given a choice, but rather forced into the pattern of give and take in order to escape isolation and not feel entirely obsolete and ostracized. I rather joined in to release myself of the pain of being alone; not because I agreed or fancied the way the discourse presented itself, but because my only choice was to join in or remain outside the perimeters of society.

Recently, I have concluded that if others’ expectations of me bring me discomfort, my expectations must in turn, whether at a conscious or unconscious level, bring others discomfort. Thusly, I practice daily releasing expectations for all people. I have let go of my unspoken expectations to be understood, heard, comforted, loved, etc. Having let go of most expectations, the challenge now is at a deeper level of my psyche.

I know myself enough to realize I still hold onto expectations regarding others. I still want them to release expectations of me. Wanting another to release expectations of me is an expectation on my part. This is clear.

I now detect with great awareness many wants and needs individuals bring into a conversation, which at times I can perceive as much unspoken ‘unfinished’ business and emotional baggage. Most of these complexities of needs and desires are at a deep level hidden below the surface so that even the individual is unaware of what he or she is bringing into the conversation.

I theorize, even if others could recognize these needs and unspoken feelings in self, and I could attempt to appease and soothe their insecurities, nothing would be accomplished at the core-level. As their esteem isn’t based on my response or surrendering to a game of ego-stroking; their esteem is something that must be built from the inside out.

For myself, I take no issue to addressing my exact needs. I am in touch with my core being. I was born this way, I believe, as most are, but much of our core-self is hindered and hammered by the indoctrination of societal expectations. I, for one, have no challenge in admitting I am in need of comfort, I am frightened, or I am feeling insecure. I recognize myself as a human being with a full range of emotions. The difference I find between myself and many others, is I will simply state without fear, when I need something. I am matter of fact. “I feel ugly. Tell me I am pretty.” I don’t hint or create scenarios in which I hope another will fulfill me. I simply state what it is that I am experiencing, whilst also recognizing I am the only one who can build myself up into a state of wholeness. When I reach out, I reach out fully, without secrets.

When I sense others’ expectations, as the observer I am dumbfounded at times in how to ‘act’ in a conversation. To me, saying what I think another wishes for me to say is not truth, but instead a type of false-validation in which I am playing a role and fulfilling an unspoken expectation based on another’s deep-seeded insecurity. This might sound cruel, but I don’t believe it is. I think instead, I view things at a deeper-lever than the typical person. I see what is beneath the skin of conversation, and much like a doctor, I am able to detect through observation and study what the patient cannot readily detect alone.

I am diving in deeper to the analysis of conversation and recognizing a familiar truth established thousands of years ago by philosophers, gurus, and spiritual teachers. The truth of freedom in all things, including conversing, is truly in the process of letting go. Letting go is freedom that doesn’t exist with thoughts of the future. All expectations are woven into the future and created from material of the past: the remnants of material based on the scaffolding of personal interpretations.

As of late, I have noted certain people trigger my own need for ego-stroking. I give my power over to the ones I supposedly ‘love’ the most. However, at closer look, I give my power over to those I ‘attach’ to the most. For in my view, love does not encompass fear or expectations, not even needs. Love is enough in and of itself.

Today, I am facing the challenge, a journey which often feels equivalent to being scraped on the inside with a razor blade to spirit, of releasing expectations of validation from those I love most deeply.

I am granting them the freedom that I desperately wish granted to me.

This is an all engulfing and brutally life-transforming, releasing process. Yet, I find in the moments of solace, in-between the effort and pain, I can at last breathe, in that I have shed the hypocrisy of self, by treating others as I truly wish to be treated.

461: Before I Arrive… Aspie Exhaustion

meeeeee

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Day of event:

Takes a lot to leave house. The dressing alone is difficult; the contemplation about showering. The cold and hot extremes of cleaning. The irritation of today’s clothes. Nothing fits right, again. Why does it fit one day and not the next? Why does it bother me today, more than yesterday? I need to eat better. I need to… stop with the ‘I needs.’ You are enough. Yes, I am enough. Begin self-talk. I am enough. I am enough. Should I do my hair or put it up? It’s cold enough for a hat. Is this a hat event? What about the mess when I take the hat off? No, matter. It is of no matter. Yes. I am fine. I will put my hair up. My ears turn red when I am shy. I will wear my hair down; no hat. No risk of mess. A few curls. Not too many. If it’s cold and hats make me happy, why am I basing my comfort and pleasure over possible messy hair? Plus I look good in hats. So what. Wear a hat. Which one? Try on three. This one. I can’t believe I wore this headband the wrong way all day yesterday. I can’t believe I haven’t worn a headband until now. Burettes, I am still afraid to wear them. I am afraid of inanimate objects. Oh, brother! I can never put them in the right place. I don’t want to look like I am trying to look good. But I don’t want to look bad. What is good? What is too much trying? I am thinking so much. Breathe. I don’t want to be judged. But I will be. Sigh. I will be. It’s okay. It’s okay. This is the world you live in. You don’t have to judge others, but they will judge you; well, most of them will. You judge a little, too. You just let it go and recognize it. I am so much older than everyone that will be there. Some old lady mother joining in. It’s okay; this is good for me. Should I eat? That will make my breath stink. I just brushed my teeth. We need toothpaste again. I am too tired to go to the store. What store can I go to? That one is so small. So many people. So close. And that one. Yes, it’s on the way. I will go. Maybe I won’t. We have enough to last a couple more days. I can’t go to the store, today. I don’t have to plan now! I don’t have to think ahead. Focus on the present….the present… the present… OMMmmmmm. I would benefit from listening to my meditation music again. Most definitely. Why so many thoughts today? Is this my Aspergers or am I being empathic again? Are these my thoughts? Yesterday, I picked up exactly what my neighbor was concerned about. I knew it wasn’t me. Such random thoughts they were. I wonder if this nervousness about going is me? Maybe. Yes, likely my brain. Why am I nervous? Over and over nervous. It’s biological. It’s biological. Hyper-joint-mobility syndrome is documented to activate the fight-flight mechanism, and in the event of applied behavioral therapy, no improvement met. This is my body. I need to surrender; let the process happen. Heart rate fast. Breathe. What shall I bring? Where is my purse? I can’t remember where I put it. Why don’t I learn to put it in the same spot everyday? As hard as I try, I misplace things. Sigh. So hard. At least, I found my jacket. I wonder where my makeup case is. I don’t wear much. Do I wear too much? By whose standards? Whose standards matter beyond mine? I want a tattoo. I need to make a drastic change in my appearance. I am so plain and ordinary, fearful of standing out. I like hats. Hats are a good starting point. Accessories. Avoided them my whole life; didn’t want to make a statement of who I was. Or better, yet, didn’t know who I was. I know, now. At least right at this moment I know. But tomorrow I will feel differently. Shit! In a few minutes I will have likely changed my mind about the tattoo. I wonder how many people will be there? I wonder if I can figure out the social norms? Who else thinks these things before going out? I really want to just stay on the computer. I feel safe there. Well, usually I do. At least I don’t have to go through all of this. And no one cares. They expect me to be me and awkward. And I don’t have to explain myself, unless I want to. Is that weird? Who gets to decide what is normal to do on a Friday night? What if going out was not normal and staying in was normal? What if that becomes the new norm? Are we socially shifting? It sure seems that way. Crap, I need to take salt and water for my health condition. Maybe I can grab a coconut water and take it with me. Will that be odd? Are beverages allowed? Well, it will keep in the car. It will be okay. What am I missing? I have purse, jacket, water…my phone. Where is it? The ringer is on mute. How will I find it? I am running out of time. Is it charged? Where did I leave my phone charger? I am always losing things. I wonder if it is in my son’s car. I can’t believe he is driving. I hope he is okay in the snowy weather. He is a good driver. I am lucky to have three boys. I wonder if this is okay for me to go out, like this. Should I stay at home? I don’t do enough around the house. Stop beating yourself up. You are fine. You are beautiful. Stop the thoughts. Breathe. You have more thoughts because you are nervous and transitioning to a new activity. Just like Joseph. He does this. You watch him. You love him unconditionally. Love yourself the same. Breathe. This is somewhat out of your control. Remember to leave a note. Okay. Note done. Where are my keys? Man, I am running out of time. Why do I do this? Why can’t I remember to put my keys in the same spot? Each day panic attack. Keys missing. Wallet missing. Shoes hiding. Sigh. This is exhausting. Do I have my sweater on backwards? Yes. Okay, fixed. These jeans have stains on them. Oh, well. I will wash them with water when I get there. These socks are uncomfortable. I don’t want to wear these shoes. I am running out of time. Fine, these shoes. There are my keys. Focus. Lock top lock only. Put dog in crate! Almost forgot. Reopen door. Okay dog in crate. Door relocked. Balancing all this down the stairs. Don’t trip. Check phone. Time is good. Calculating eight minute drive. I will arrive five minutes before event. Perfect time to park and walk into building. Arrive right on time. Even with traffic I have a few minutes to spare. And I can be late. This is an event, not work or school. When will I need gas again? Soon. Gas goes fast. When will we run out of fuel in the world? I never have tried public transportation here. I wonder if it’s as good as everyone says it is. Probably. Does it smell. Probably. Is that stereotyping? I hope not. Oh, well, it’s just a thought, just a contemplation. Breathe. Drive. Drive. Focus. Focus. Focus. It’s almost over. You’re almost there. I am so tired.

460: The Extremes of Being

The Extremes of Being

meee

I like to be with people; I am lonely without them.
People exhaust me.
I enjoy time alone, resting in peace and quiet.
I miss companionship.
I love who I am, my mind, my thoughts, my deep, deep depth.
I dislike the depth of my thoughts.
I want to share my story. I have to share my story.
I wish I’d kept more secrets to myself.
I long to pour all my love into the universe and to serve and give.
I often shove an excess of my love into a singular one.
I feel an increased sense of worth when I accomplish a lot of tasks. The simplest accomplishments satisfy me.
I am exhausted in my attempts to accomplish anything.
I love, love, love the moment. I am happy. I am content.
I dread, dread, dread the moment that the happy moment ends.
I understand the complexities of the universe, of philosophy, of love, of spirituality.
I cannot understand the various tides of my own being.
I am a giver. I give, give, give, unconditionally, without a trace of wanting to receive the same. I just live to give.
When I give, I become depleted and wonder why I have given so much.
I am honest. I am over honest.
I know how to be a very effective liar, and it scares me.
I am myself in completion.
My self changes every minute.
I want to be held and loved and protected.
I want to not want anything from anyone, and be self-sufficient.
I crave to be understood. I understand others.
I don’t understand myself.
I can see through the rules and games of society. The falsehoods and created truths and statements of how I should be.
I struggle with how to live without a playing board; where to move the pawn of me, if beneath there is no foundation, and beyond no playbook.
I hear from a source unknown, and trust in this truth and heart-mind wisdom.
I crumble into myself wondering why I am forsaken.
I embrace all aspects of myself, the good, the bad, the ugly. The powerful, the weak, the incredibly feisty and the incredibly shy.
I recognize none of these elements of self exist, once I dwell outside the realm of classification and judgment.
I respect the freedom for others to think and live their own thoughts and lives.
I get cluttered inside my own mind on whether or not I have the right to be the way I am.
I understand the process and action of letting go, releasing control, trusting and having faith.
I understand that I go to a place in which none of the tools previously gathered are effective or tolerated by an aspect of self that I know neither as shadow nor angel, but merely lost.
I am confident, empowered, worthy, and remarkably brilliant.
I am like everyone else; in truth, nothing about me is unique beyond the thoughts I gather as my accepted reality.
I love to release, stay in the present, be at peace in the moment, live in the space of now.
I find comfort in structured times of routine and order.
I am in a battle with myself in which I often win.
I wonder where the loser goes to cry.

459: Aspergers: The Marathon

Sometimes I forget the complexities of my own Aspergers. I forget how much goes on underneath the obvious and observed. I forget the complexities and complications. Forget that just to navigate a single day is to run a marathon.

Here is a list of significant challenges associated with individuals with Asperger’s Syndrome. (This is based on my experience with myself and son; as is the case with all people, we are each unique, and experiences differ.)

Completely confused by small changes to a familiar situation or environment

Feels threatened by hugs

Overwhelmed by bright colors

Frightened by loud noises

Voices can be painful

Capacity to hear may be better than to see

Lethargic and tire easily, moving from one position to another requires a great deal of energy

Poor sense of self, of body in space, and underestimate how to safely move and navigate environment

Will stick to strict routines and avoid playing with others

Aversions and oversensitivity to certain texture, sounds, colors, people, scents, tastes

Oversensitive to bright lights and sounds, like the humming of the fridge, certain light bulbs, and electric currents that other people may not notice

Difficulty sitting still and getting comfortable

Low tolerance for constant repeated noise or loud noise

Overwhelmed around a lot of people, especially new people

Unable to focus when distracted with visuals, such as clutter of pictures on a work page and/or decoration in a room

May do the following to avoid performing a task or listening: throw a tantrum, refuse with defiance, hide from the situation (under jacket hood, beneath a desk), complain of fatigue, make a rude comment

Short attention span

Difficult maintaining balanced level of emotional arousal, either too low or too high

Impulsive behavior is often a result of a perception of someone’s high-expectations

Doesn’t anticipate the consequence of her actions

Multi-tasking is overwhelming

Weak visual-spatial planning, e.g. bump into walls, objects, and other people

Mentally cannot organize new situations and becomes frightened

Hard to perceive problems

Meltdowns/Tantrums from sensory overload

Constant insecurity about what possibly might happen and how others may or may not behave

Uncertain how to behave in new situations

High anxiety

Risk of self-injury and depression

Feels under pressure to perform and behave

Doesn’t anticipate the consequences of her actions

Every day experiences seem random and unpredictable

Can be violent towards others emotionally or physically, and not perceive own behavior or strength

Difficult judging appropriate behavior

May take risks without knowing how to evaluate danger of the situation

Fears and phobias

Obsessive thoughts

Can have internal pressure to escape a given situation, but lacks the ability to formulate a plan to relieve pressure (no escape route)

Irritated by sensations on skin, such as itchy scalp and arms

Makes repetitive noises, e.g. a vocal sound, tapping, scraping, nail clicking

Bores easily

Doesn’t understand why she is bored by interests others find intriguing, such as common structured play

Sensitive to sensations, such as hunger, a full bladder, dry skin, taste in mouth

Frustrated by inability to perform a given task and/or excel

Preoccupied with details

Meltdowns and outbursts

Over-stimulation

Feelings of insecurity, anxiety and fear

Feelings may be manifested in physical ailments and actual body pain

Overwhelmed

Difficulty grasping humor and seeing the a different perspective or point of view

May choose one word from a discussion and base his/her individual response on the one identified element, instead of the main point of topic

Focuses on the details of one specific part of conversation, over and over, in the mind

Verbal impulsivity and nervousness, as well as a need to fit in, may lead to interruptions, babbling and hurried speech

Lacks ability some times to determine appropriate moment for closure during conversing, and instead speaks incessantly

May recognize he is talking too much but cannot stop his impulsivity to continue to talk

Grooming and hygiene issues, as well as difficulty evaluating own appearance, presentation and attire

Gullible, unable to always understand the punch line of a joke or hidden meaning of a statement, and easily persuaded by others

Difficulty with nonverbal body language, inappropriate body proximity and facial expression

Fluctuating tone, rhythm, volume, and pitch of voice

Timing of speech and delivery varies

Short attention span

Prefers familiarity in people and surroundings

Difficulty recognizing what behavior is expected in a new situation or event when compared to another past experience—may run, scream, jump instead of sitting

Nervous habits and repetitive behavior

mar

After two days of high-functioning behavior, aka navigating the social arena, I shall be in bed hugging my Mac laptop.

(Much of this article was taken from a past list I compiled, which has strategies for helping children in the educational environment. The link is Working with Children.)

458: Morphers Anonymous; What is ‘Self’

I am wondering if the female with Asperger’s Syndrome could also encompass a loss-of-identity-of-self element.

I have always had a hard time understanding my own interests, likes, wants, and needs. My desires become obscured and distorted based on my current love-interest. This could be a love of a person, as in friendship and/or romance.

I seem to morph in and out of existence based on my current lifestyle and interest. I can hold onto certain elements of self, primarily my special interests since childhood, e.g., writing, drawing, poetry, nature, animals, music, but other interests and ‘trademarks’ of my personality readily change without much effort and without me even knowing based on my interaction with another person.

Somethings that hold true and steadfast for my character and sense of self include:

Honesty
Integrity
Great Love and Passion
Processing
Lack of Manipulation
Lack of Game Playing
Intellectual in depth Processing
Tenderness
Kindness
Sensitivity
Intense Introspection
A Child-Like Heart and Spirit
Innocence
Hope
Trusting
Sharing
Giving
The Desire to Serve
The Desire to Make a Difference

The parts of my life that alter when I have an interest in another:

Spending less time on a past special interest or activity.
Focusing on new relationship, sometimes with nothing else seeming to matter, except pleasing the other person by becoming akin to their likes and interest.
Vast amounts of emotional energy spent on the person, in comparison to the amount previously spent on self or another.
Partaking in future planning regarding the person.
Over-analyzing and focusing on aspects of my appearance, habits, behaviors, and goals; effectually comparing myself to the other, and wondering in what ways my self could better reflect the other person.
Revamping of what I choose for entertainment, recreation, and sometimes food/drink, clothing, etc.
Taking on the likes and interests of the other person, including book, music, and movie genres, entertainment, social events and various activities.
Taking on mannerisms, dialect, ways of speech, or other unique characteristics of the person.
Taking on belief systems, philosophies and/or personality traits of the person.

This is usually not done at a conscious-level. Typically, I am blinded to my own behavior, justifying what I am doing with some mind-conditioning or logical sequencing, such as rationalization or total denial. This morphing differs in codependency, as I remain intact in my self-esteem and sense of worth. I do not enable. I have clear boundaries of what I will not tolerate or allow in my comfort zone. I maintain a sense of joy in my own life and accomplishments. But it is similar in codependency in my want to over-give, transform based on another, and my tendency to obsess, fantasize, and make the person more important in reality than he or she truly is. In some ways the person becomes like my god or sun, and I the dependent mortal or planet.

Even with all my growth and self-reflection, I still get caught in the pull-push state of wanting to be myself in completion and wanting to figure out how to be what another wants me to be. Even with this strong awareness, this morphing of who I am transpires without warning or clear indication, until I am in the transient state of a chameleon of my personhood.

This morphing is a common part of the female with Asperger’s condition; the female with Aspergers molds her own behaviors and mannerisms in a way that she believes will satisfy the need of her beloved.

The downfall in this behavior is foremost: losing self-identity.

The other issue at hand is the female with ASD cannot ever meet another’s expectations in completion, because the wants and needs of another individual (aka her ‘best friend’) are in constant transition.

It is important to note that this act of morphing is instinctual in nature to many females with ASD. She is seemingly programmed in the brain to morph based on attraction or interest in another human being.

I repeatedly try to transform my own ways and behaviors to meet the needs of another, without even realizing I am partaking in this behavior. Once I catch myself in this chameleon action, I pull back and wonder why I have once again fallen into the trap of losing self. From here I question the sense of self in all aspects, and become boggled by the concept of simply being.

During the morphing phase, I live my life through the eyes of one person. I see myself being watched by this someone at a distance. I see myself adapting, conforming, and molding in an attempt to fit some faraway expectation or goal, I have subconsciously created. I watch my own self through the eyes of someone else. I match my movements, choices, and even sometimes my thought processes to what I think this individual expects or desires from me. I do this without much awareness or analysis, much like a robot following a pre-instructed and installed program. There isn’t much thought to what I am doing or why I am doing it, beyond doing.

Usually this perspective, the way I interpret myself being ‘seen,’ and how I respond in word, thought, and action, shifts every year or so, depending on the duration of a relationship. Everything I do, I imagine and I believe is seen through the eyes of a human being beyond myself (boyfriend, lover, husband, best friend, boss). My movements, my words, my way of being, revolve around this someone beyond myself.

It is like constantly having an overseer observing me. I question would he/she behave like this? I ask, “Is this bringing me closer to his/her liking?” It isn’t as much a need for approval as wanting to match myself to this other. Interestingly, at the same time this morphing is transpiring, I still maintain my own self-esteem and self-love. I like who I am. I want to be me. But I somehow get lost in the process of befriending this high-interest person.

High-interest in the keyword and key point.

Without the high-interest, I am not drawn into the morphing and adjusting of self. With high-interest, my brain attaches, much like it does with a special hobby or activity, and I become a scientist dissecting the person, as if the person were a project. My brain’s natural ability to dissect, take apart, and rearrange pieces of a whole into a new whole takes over. I become a detective of self and other; again, not typically at a conscious level; though I have some awareness of what I am doing, a cloak to my full reality remains. This cloaking action resembles some sort of protective mechanism and functions the same way as in my high-interest projects, (aka: fixations). I cannot seem to pull myself out, or properly analyze and confront my own behavior, until the passionate interest has subsided; the stopping point/tilting point usually being a new special interest. I go from one to the other, a child on the monkey bars of a playground, not letting go of the one in hand, until the next in hand is firmly grasped.

Through this way of being, I lose track of who I am. Yet, I wonder if I ever was to begin with.

If I take time to process this sense of being, and the ‘whys’ of the way I respond in passion to another, I become confused in thoughts of ‘what is being?’ and ‘what is self?’ I have no idea of who I am, beyond space and matter, and a reflection of the universe. I am ever-changing and transitioning substance. I adhere to the string-theory, to ancient philosophies and belief systems—that of being nothing but the combined perception of others. In truth, I know a thousand others would have a thousand interpretations of this self I am, and in a year’s passing even these opinions would all transition. I am never stagnant, and awaken a new person not daily, but minute by minute. I have no general sense of self or of being. I am that I am. In essence I am nothing.

Perhaps because of the ‘no self’ theory, I transform without intention when fixated on another. Perhaps, like some spiritual teachers have professed, I am merely taking on the characteristics reflected in the person I am observing because I am only, and will always only be, a reflection. Perhaps, I am wired in a way, spiritually or biologically, in which I am not a solid form made to stay stagnant and unwavering; or perhaps I am more keenly alert and aware of the changes and transformations inside of me, to a point that the changes distract from me recognizing a fully forming personhood.

Regardless of my hypothesis, I get trapped in the cyclical repetition of morphing.

In the last season of inquiry, I have reached a new threshold, in which I have questioned: What do I want in another person? What makes me happy? What are my true needs?

The only answer I hear is: love

Beyond unconditional love and acceptance, (and beyond Maslow’s hierarchy of basic needs), I don’t understand needs.
Any needs, to me, seem obscure and border on self-based, ego-needs. Who am I to claim a need without at the same time delegating to another how I wish him/her to be or respond (change) in order to please and satisfy me? And what is it inside of myself that is not complete and satisfied in which I need another to fulfill me?

With these thoughts, I become entangled in trying to contemplate the very basic nature of self needs and self-identity.

The Community Page

Photo on 12-3-13 at 5.59 PM

I have a place on Facebook where I share thoughts, parts of this blog, jokes, and questions. Please feel free to join us, if you have not already. I explain a bit about my page below, which I believe gives some insight into my psyche. Much love. ~ Sam

On my Everyday Asperger’s Facebook “Like” Page:

1) I post a lot of photos and images I find on google search and pinterest because this is how I stim and release anxiety.

2) I write my truest deepest emotions because I know of no other way to exist.

3) I post a lot all at once because that is how my brain works: I explode with joy, ideas, motivation, and the strong impulse to connect.

4) I share my poetry and deep philosophical prose because my mind is deep and complex and interwoven with extreme empathy and keen insight.

5) I offer help and ask for help because I believe the greatest attribute in life is kindness.

6) I accept everyone unconditionally, avoid judgment, advice-giving, and maintain a longing for humility and justice, because I treat others as I wish to be treated.

7) I give to give, without want of attention, validation, profit, popularity, or high-numbers, because the world needs more people who give from the heart.

8) I become excited and child-like because I never lost my youthful heart and creative drive.

9) I meet beautiful souls who understand me because they too have known rejection, challenges, and deep loss.

10) I grow in strength each day because I am no longer alone.

Here is the link: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Everyday-Aspergers/387026824645012