Balancing the World; thoughts on leadership and autism

My entire life, like many on the autism spectrum, I have oftentimes been misjudged, misinterpreted, and misunderstood. When I finally, after over four decades on this earth, located individuals with like minds, I was overcome with mixed emotions. I’d finally found “my people” and at the same time lost a piece of myself that I thought was extremely different. Lost in the sense that I came to realize, after conversing with other autistics, that I wasn’t so different and “unique” after all. However, this was okay—extremely okay. Finding a home base community in which I was at last understood, accepted, and supported far out weighed any sense of loss of elements of self.

Four-plus years later, after an outpour of online writing, and I am navigating another aspect of my journey. I am entering another unfamiliar zone—a place of no predictability. I am facing a wide-open space of new people and new encounters. In addition, I am trying my best to maneuver in rarely frequented territory: that of an autistic leader.

Autism, in my case Asperger’s Syndrome, comes in all shapes and sizes, multiple colors of the rainbow. It is truly a spectrum. With autism, there are the typical “gifts” and tribulations. For me, the beneficial attributes of my ASD are profound empathy and insight, prolific writing, poetry, and the ability to put into words my suffering in a way others can understand. In this way, I am able to make the loneliness of some less of a burden, and I have been able to serve as a sort of gateway into a supportive community of other autistics. A community in which we find ourselves in one another. I don’t say this lightly. There have been streams of individuals filtering through the pages of my blogs and social media pages to essentially say that they now have at last found hope—and some a reason to not end their life. I don’t say this to brag, either. Those that have known me, know my heart, and it is for them I speak.

The trouble today is not so much my tribulations related to ASD, such as peak moments of heightened anxiety, bombardments of feelings that at first look are hard to decipher, the jarring reminders every hour of my waking day that I am somehow not built like most others, the intense heartache and lack of breath from searing pangs of empathy, and the worries brought on by my minds ability to steer off into complex, multi-level corridors of discovery. No, it’s not so much in that—though “that” still consumes me. More over, it is this new place I find myself, in where I am exposed.

I am a natural born leader; I always have been, despite my own qualms and misgivings. Despite my protest. Despite my quirks and challenges. Overall, I tend to end up as a voice of some sort–usually for the downcast or underdog. And it’s not amongst my favorite of tasks—this speaking up for myself and others. Indeed, it would be fair to say, I dread many moments beyond the comfort of my home. Still, there are mornings of great hope and gratitude for my ability to reach out, and with this comes waves of great peace; but there, on the other end of the pendulum, is the bareness of naked vulnerability, the removal of shield, the entranceway for stinging spears. There, in the darker zone, lives my fear and weakness, and the very brittle fight to survive exposure. For I’m not the average person, I’m not made the way of the masses. I am very much, despite where I stand, still autistic.

I am hurt daily, by my own accord, by the acceptance of others’ truths as mine. By the energy it takes to abstract and remove everything that doesn’t ring true to me. And to then wade through the muck of others’ ideas, input, feelings, insights—and on an on—to hopefully decipher what is valid and necessary at this time. I am not only balancing myself, which those on the spectrum readily know is a gallant effort, I am also balancing everyone within my reach. In this way, it is hard to be outside exposed in the “real” world.

It is especially challenging when outsiders (who do not know me and often see a reflection of their own self) try to pin their tail of identity onto me. I feel smothered, unrecognized, and brought back to the bastardized halls of my high school years. Brought back to the pettiness, the name-calling, the finger pointing, and relive the nightmares over again. It is equally difficult when another, particularly in the autistic community, starts proclaiming how I should tailor my words to suit their needs—the current societal trends—the current “right way.” To see this conglomeration of “do-gooders” with supposed good intention in mind, attempt to steer me into what is the most well accepted approach of the day is excruciatingly exhausting.

I can only be so much. I can only do so much. And I don’t understand why my own tribe would not see this. They forget that I am autistic. They forget how dreadfully scary this is. How frightening to attempt to build a bridge from the autistic world to the non-autistic world, and to appear “normal” enough in the typical arena to be heard and listened to, and “autistic” enough to be trusted in my own community. It is a fine balancing act in which I am continually on a high wire with a long heavy pole. Constantly pushed off balance while attempting to get to the other side to the unknown. I am walking step-by-step toward something that is neither a goal nor destiny, but rather a calling. I am serving, I am giving, I am loving, I am supporting, I am being my all. Yet no matter how I struggle, no matter where I step, to some, as is this world—it is never enough.

 

(I normally post at my blog Everyday Aspie, but my WordPress options were not working accurately there today.)

 

Sam’s book Everyday Aspergers is now available internationally on Amazon.

More information can be found at her company: myspectrumsuite.com

527: Once More

Once more
Some happenstance
Of circumstance
Everything circumvents
Transparent facades
Of turbulence

Familiar and foreign
Anomaly of contrasts
Birthed in barren land
Where the seed of now
Searches for rooting-ground

Bedding down she finds no relief
Disappointed she flutters
As butterfly, to higher lands
Where chance planting might arise
Left
Shattered by the nonexistence

Myself here
Transpired
Greatest works
Long past expired
A lathering of doubt
Pulling up from the foundation
Taking in what are last reserves

Core-dripping real
Wavering self-confidence
Finite point
Of seeming happiness
Drowned out
By the bottom realm
Once more

518: The Barbs

I can sense fear, well enough. It doesn’t come in needle form. It isn’t injected by an outside source. There is no fluid that enters through a prick or an invasive probing. Fear bypasses exterior layers, rooting from within, expanding and growing as seedlings do. And I am but host to the cyclic process.

For most of my days, I wasn’t aware of the fear inside. Even as I was always anxious and scared, I couldn’t readily identify my emotions of fright, basically because I was fright. Even as new fear entered, there was no obvious change inside of me. There was no alarm system in place. Fear was my normal. If there were trespasses against me, there was no way to tell, because I was already overcrowded inside; one more pair of prodding footsteps made no difference to a well-established colony of thousands. Ironically, in a state of fear-equilibrium, I felt perpetually balanced.

In regards to the fear I housed inside, I don’t know when I started to shift. It was sometime between the start of my public writings and the times I had delved deeply into spiritual studies. I’d been searching for answers. And something had clicked. Something inside of me. And in those moments the fear became recognizable. Wherein it had been invisible before, this fear now had a voice and had taken form. It arrived aware of itself, pushing up and growing in a making-room-for-more manner.

The fear was real then. It always had been, but now it was set outside the shadows and staring down at me. I could feel it everywhere, a monstrosity. I knew of it, too, as if an old familiar friend had reappeared for fellowship. Foe, he was, true, but more so a companion, in the way he meandered and made himself at home, opening and closing whatever compartment he fancied.

Seeing him move this way, amongst the others, amongst the piles of pain, in the conglomeration of fear, baffled me. A visibility granted where once there had been utter blindness, seemed miracle. In this way, fear itself, in manifestation, became an element of transformation. In this way, fear was part of my breaking and making.
With my new awareness my body was liken to a musical organ, each key being pounded in by some unknown trigger, and in response piping out this obnoxious vibration, the sounds penetrating my interior and leaching out of the exterior: a lost song let out into the open.

Wherein before I might have survived in a state of saturated fear, my stagnation birthed through a tangible blindness, here, in this new awareness of continual pounding, I could not live. In response to the discomfort my instinctual nature took over. And at a subconscious level I began the process of sorting through and categorizing the discomfort. Later, again, quite instinctually, I established a way to eradicate the unwanted tenants. I’d rely on my own body. Recognizing that I was contaminated by fear, I would remove each and every cause for pain, my body an informant, verbalizing through careful unspoken word.

It whispered its tellings,
listen, stomach would say, I am tight,
listen, heart would say, I am pounding,
listen, hands would say, I am clenched.

And from here, the whys came forth. Stomach was sad from the way the stranger had frowned. Heart was upset in the way the word ‘stupid’ reminded him of the past. Hands were scared by the loud boom of the car. And I listened. Day after day, I listened. Until, with much patience and practice, I began to hear less and less. Now, new spaces opened where none had existed before. Now when a stranger appeared, when he rooted himself in me, the fear was no longer cloaked by the masses. Now when the fear came, it came with a loud blow into an empty room. Now when fear arrived I knew immediately.

The tables had turned. Instead of housing the fears that had used me for room and board for decades, now I removed the newbies, the ones that had hitchhiked in hopes of permanent residency. Now I gathered the barbs and released them—their freedom, my freedom.

509: There Needs to be A Name

There needs to be a name
There needs to be a name for what happens
Because always with happiness
Comes this shadow
Some dark figure behind closed doors

When happy rings
I open
I envelop
I take in the colors, the smells, and desires
I become that which is: calm, giddy, and hope-filled
The world mine, for a moment
Free
Anxiety lifted
Somewhat ‘normal’
And yet…
And yet…
And yet…

The Shadow
There—waiting, watching, wanting
To devour

I am these two: Split
Yes, split
I am momentarily happy, and I am perpetually sad
Half sees the other as weak, dismal, and pathetic
Half sees the other as over-bearing, tiring and exhaustive
Melancholic one, concurs
Happy sweeps up the messes and sets things straight

Some other piece, long forgotten
Wants nothing more
Than to crawl into a space of no halves
No me’s
Where there is emptiness
Tranquility
And the absence of extremes

Somewhere between
Over-exertion
And under-confidence
I wobble, this lonelier non-version
Frightened by the chime of happiness

~ Everyday Aspergers

507: Removing Warts… The Nasty Aspie Triggers

I am triggered by a lot. You name it, and it can feasibly trigger me.

The weather: Thoughts of the past associated with specific temperature, events and schedule changed because of weather or pending weather, fatigue/pain triggered, ramifications of our treatment of global environment and climatic events as a result, and on and on and on.

Digesting the food on my plate: Poor suffering milk, a byproduct of suffering cow, and the pain-hormones involved. Body affected by poisons, chemicals, over abundance or lack of nutrients, allergic reactions, digestive system triggered. Fight or flight biological response uncontrolled by the implementation of Cognitive Behavior techniques. Thanks but no thanks.

An actor’s line in a movie: Brings back a particular emotional event in life…and ain’t all things emotional for me??? Rhetorical question, followed by giddy applause of distaste in my own reactions.

A particular change in bodily appearance, function, ability, sensation, weight, signs of age: Note to self… avoid mirror and stop examining skin with magnifying glass. I am not vain, at least I hope not, just overly-aware of everything. I am so sensitive, I have gotten to the point I can tell what mineral or nutrient I am low on, e.g., numb toe equals low on magnesium, twitchy eye equals needing potassium, heart rate up equals time for some more sodium, etc. etc. etc. And don’t get me started on hormone fluctuations. Mostly, I am disturbed by warts (I have one tiny one), new moles, age spots, blubber and sags, and those weird, icky-lined wrinkles below my neck on my chest.

An offhand, unremarkable (to most) comment aimed kind of at me, at least I assume so: I can spend hours wondering what one word I picked out of a conversation could possibly mean, and from there wonder why I spend so much of my time picking apart conversations, and then psychoanalyze Aspergers in general, and then compare my communication skills to anyone in my circle of humans I have ever encountered; not a fun way to whittle away the hours, but nonetheless HAPPENING, regardless. Thank you meaningful professionals, but if you ain’t Aspie, you ain’t Aspie and you have NO possible way of understanding the makings of my mind. No matter how much you study a gorilla, you won’t understand how a gorilla thinks. And, yes, indeed, I think myself a different species. Have you met my people?

A joke, a poster, a political comment, a personal comment, a slogan, a lyric, a quote, a song: I can pick apart anything and make connections. Sometimes the connections and contradictory in nature, often really, and they leave me baffled, confused, and feeling entirely alone on this planet. Sometimes I am certain this is hell.

A missed connection, missed meetings, cancellations, no shows, last-minute changes, and the like: These leave me wallowing in self-pity, and then more self-pity piled on for allowing myself to have self-pity, and so on. You get the mirrored-picture. And then, to make it worse, I try to be mad, to understand the concept of mad, and then in turn blame myself for not being able to hold a grudge or stay angry. I then visualize people when they are angry, friends, acquaintances, loved ones, various movie actors, strangers, and the like, and I try to emulate the emotion. Then I feel guilty for trying, in other words ‘faking,’ because faking is lying, and I want to be truthful. And I feel guilty for trying to be mad?? Who does that? I get trapped in a whirlwind of how I should react to disappointment, and then punish myself for allowing myself to feel disappointed, because isn’t disappointment ego-based? From here I wonder where to go for help because I have tried it all, from Priest to Psychiatrist, and no one, absolutely no one, comes close to understanding me, beyond me, and even my understanding is warped, at high-speed, to boot!

Broken promises: This being the most painful. The world is filled with uncertainties, another major trigger, and they are everywhere, but the hurt is intolerable when someone doesn’t follow through with their word, I don’t feel bad as a result of judging the person, or of even having had housed expectation, and I am not mad, I am just reminded of the terrible uncertainty and unknowns of the world I live in; and that I basically can count on no one but myself, but then I can’t count on messy-me either; and this reminder (trigger) terrifies me and makes me immobile, couch-bound, and affects my pain condition, depression, and sometimes thoughts of leaving the world; not that I could leave, I don’t think, because I wouldn’t want to hurt anyone; and then the chain of thoughts begin that I am selfish to think of leaving anyone behind in this place, then thoughts of how the human condition is a suffering condition… yes, seemingly bleak pessimism, I recognize this, but it’s not, it’s TRIGGERS.

Being critiqued, criticized, put in my place, hearing unsolicited advice, being scolded, scorned, etc.: You get the picture. We both know I am not perfect. But did you know that I see all my flaws at multiple deep levels all fricken day long. I am likely the most self-aware crackerjack you will ever, ever meet, (unless you happen to be Aspie, too, then it’s a two-way tie), and I have tattooed my imperfections on my soul, and greet them minute-by-minute everyday. Generally, I don’t particularly like being human; I can’t tolerate the lurching selfishness, the ways in which people possess and take and haunt. It all confuses and compels me, and at the same time I recognize I am human, and that sucks. Critique me and I think I am more alone than ever. How could someone not know I was hyper-sensitive already, and keen on my own flaws? And then, to top that, I start to think that perhaps I am over-sensitive to mask a submerged and buried dark-shadow rage and that I have an innate inbred fear of anger. Until I sit it out and re-realize that NOPE, I just don’t get anger, more than a passing defense mechanism or emotional response. I don’t know it, more than a passerby. He waves, he punches me in the gut, and he leaves. That’s about it.

Setting myself up: There are certain triggers I know will get me bad, keep me bedridden, or at the very least cause me to be lost in thought for hours, and yet I repeat certain behaviors that set me up for certain triggers. As if I don’t learn. I am taking inventory. I know what hurts. I know what creates chaos in my mind, but at the same time I carry this everlasting hope that this time it will be different. I have this blind eye to people. I think they will change. I think things have to change. I think everyone must transition at the high-speed, everyone must have similar depth, heart, and soul. But they don’t. I just can’t seem to wrap my brain around that concept.

504: Had I but a voice…whisperings of Aspergers

“This is your Aspergers. It is your brain searching for something to fixate on. It is our hyper-intelligence. Our brains are puzzle solvers. We are here to help the planet. When we focus on light we make dynamic shifts. But the yang of the yin is when we focus on the dark; it is hell. The trap, we Aspies fall into, is trying to solve our emotions, instead of sitting with them.” ~ Sam

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

We believe we are never going to be good enough, right enough, or enough. No matter how much we read, decipher and figure out. No matter the conclusions pondered and information transmitted, the puzzles seemingly solved, or ideas seemingly mastered. We remain somewhat in awe of ourselves and the world. Our bodies and brains, and everything, unwinded and dissected, and nonetheless remaining singularly tangled and unmanageable. Our brains were made to conquer and conquest, and yet, we are the ones conquered in the endless ways in which to surmise our reality and exponential experience in life. Through our ability to mesh objectivity with subjectivity, we are made into a conundrum of possibilities; ourselves delivered to the world through a large scope of outward introspection, as if the audience is the All of everyone, and we the victim of circumstantial evidence. We are hunted, say hounded, by our innate ability to view ourselves from a distance, whilst climbing inside of others, many others, and imagining a collected viewpoint and conclusion of us. And this transaction isn’t something purposeful or invented for cause or reason. The exact act of becoming this observer of the observers is ingrained into our essential state of being. We are in essence and in truth, a mini-version of everything we take in. In this sense, we can never be that which is good, right, or enough, as everything is projected and taken back, endless mirrors upon mirrors of becoming the every changing of that which is around us.

We are made to be puzzle solvers, and the dynamic labyrinth of us, and that of the singular ‘me,’ eludes the perceived self. We become so twisted in thought that the truth hides between and beneath complex layers of potentiality, a state of existence at battle with forethought of failure. A concept considered is quickly sliced and diced and made into the sectioned out pieces of avenues of demise. We can see with hindsight, foresight, and insight into the depths of each solution we consider. Thinking therefor becomes exhaustive itself, and at times, many times, uncontrollable. As if we were made to conquer the exact thought perceived, only our tools of conquest are both our weapon and our curse. Had we the opportunity to rest our minds, the remainder flows naturally; however, the resting itself is continually challenged and masked by further thought of the concept of ‘rest’ itself. Making relaxation still another puzzle to be solved and pieced back together. For everywhere is this appearance of a ‘challenge.’ Everywhere our brains want to pick and perch, peck and devour, until the end point is found. Even as we know there is no end in sight. This is the deviation sector of our searching, a place in space in which we can step back and observe ourselves hunting for something we know does not exist, while simultaneous lacking the ability to halt said action. Had we known how to stop ourselves, our minds would be different, lacking the cohesiveness to piece back together that which is before us. We are made this way for reason unknown to us, even as we feel there must be a reason: for how could such a ‘thing’ as I exist, if not for some purpose other than the regions of hell in which our thinking leads.

We long for order in a world that dictates discord, even as nature professes the circularity of wholeness. We see behind the curtains of societal games and rules. The prophecies of past make sense to us, wherein the theories, the solutions, the ways in which modern leaders point, do not. Everything we create is created at multiple levels. Sometimes our own thinking manifests further outcomes. Sometimes the coincidences are incomprehensible and impossible to explain. We are descriptive creatures. Everywhere and all about is description. We take in information like manmade thesauruses and dictionaries. Had we known we’d be mistaken as ancient ones marked as ‘know-it-alls’ and beseeched with unceasing ways of interpretation, perhaps we would have failed to live without taking first breath. But regardless, we remain. Our quest is unreachable to those that think not as we. We are, in many ways, separate in how we perceive the world. Our sensory input on high-speed, our ability to reach a temporary finishing point, beyond measure. We endure a silent suffering all day and all night, the intensity of the world bearing down on us as a tangible concrete weight. A heaviness indescribable and ever moving into each crevice that is ‘self.’ To wake is to take in another day of battle, as to sleep is to meander through that which was taken in the whole of the day. The subconscious combined with another powerful force abstracting the decayed ravaged thoughts and replacing them with an unspeakable knowledge beyond us. Our scope of intelligence so vastly far-reaching that our own minds become lost in an ocean, torrential.

……………….

Had I but a moment to replace my being with another, less common than I, and make this person enter me, then he would know the hell I speak of, the way in which the mind made mad taunts and slithers as snake to fowl captured.

In every way I am me and I am not me; and so it goes I am divided into multiple selves not knowing who to expect. Calm on the exterior or upset. Weeping or cursing. Lying to self or submerged in the illusion of truth. I know not what will happen next. I am subjected to the layering of others: a natural empath taking on both the hurts and wants of those around me. I soak in greed. I breath out anger. I force myself to stand, even as I know not where, as vultures around me circle, taking in what they think is me, and spitting out their awful truths. I am invisible. I know this. I see this. I write this on the edge of my soul. The outline of me marked in words “I am,” and yet sucked out into that voice which is the masses.

I am slipping as I speak. Lost in the places of public where people proclaim this sense of righteous being. I drift in a world where I long to be seen and where everywhere I am branded with harsh judgment. It does not matter how many people love me, need me, or attempt to protect me. Even as my guardian circle expands, the vultures come closer. It is not the ability to build my force field of love that guides me; more so it is my built-in longing to move beyond the vultures of society, which propels me forward in action. Had I not the torrential rain spurted down by the falsehoods of this world, I would be not urged to continue onward. Even in the darkest moments, I know the voice that tricks me is merely a reminder of the voice that tricks all.

Had I but a voice that could penetrate the walls of me, I would pierce me a thousand times through and be within and without, transmitted into a time without time, and cast out as minion to the masses of humble-seekers. Had I but a heart a thousand times pierced, I would ask another blade to enter, if only to free that which is imprisoned: myself upon self.

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

“We think we are ungrateful, but that’s not it. Our brains are just always solving, so we conclude we are never satisfied. Thinking we are not thankful, we then self-punish, believing ourselves less than and not enough—incapable of finding this so-called “satisfaction,” a mythical word that is a leeched byproduct spawned from societal whimsy.” ~ Sam

501: The Isolation of Aspergers

Sometimes having Aspergers is the scariest thing in the world—not the name, or label, or stigmatism the word brings, not even the essence of Aspergers itself, but what it represents in my soul.

No matter how many friends I have, or people I confide in or reach out to, no matter how far I go in my search of self or how many ways I accomplish goals for relief, I end up back at the starting line. Facing forward with the force of the world against me.

Only someone with Aspergers will know what I mean; people not on the spectrum will think they can understand; they will look at their own depth, take in what they know, decipher their inventory, but with all of me I know it is impossible to understand the pain of Aspergers unless you have directly experienced it.

There is nothing more isolating than knowing myself completely, understanding fully the mind and the way in which I act and respond, and still being helpless to alter how I am. It’s not that I want to change me, but I do long for relief and a mild form of adaptation, minor assimilation, something that makes me feel I have made progress, even as I know I have nothing to progress from.

I am entirely an anomaly, in all ways, and in all forms. In fact, I am beginning to think I am the essence, the exact symbolism for yin/yang. For I cannot go out to one extreme of the pendulum without going full swing to the other side, in regards to emotions, experience, outlook, opinion, even circumstances.

To know so much is disheartening. To see so much, to be able to pick apart my mind piece by piece, and understand my inner-workings, and still remain what seems to be helpless is maddening. I can’t cease to think nor stop my methods of multi-faceted interpretation. My mind, some giant mechanism that grinds and grates to piece things together—every thing—including complex analysis of my own thoughts, emotions, and renderings.

Everything I am and everything I do, is adamantly dissected, without choice, including everything I watch, like some giant intertwined web spinning past my mind’s eye. It appears at times I am thinking three times over; that my mind is somehow capable of deciphering the immediate now, the effects of the immediate now, and the thought processes of the two previous aforementioned, and even the predictable outcome and by-product of the thinking process itself. I cannot help but become overtaken and mind-boggled, drowning in a perplexity of images and thoughts, some speaking over the other, some repeating, some making complete sense, and some the markings of a crazed woman.

Add this to the noise inside my head of all the rules I have been taught, (or more so taken in as truth), and I become cluttered with an endless echo of noise: my thoughts, my thoughts about thoughts, and their thoughts, as well as my analysis of all of these thoughts. I become so lost in myself, and this is only the first layer of a multi-dimensional sponge cake of mayhem.

Next comes the bombardment of guilt. The ways I should be, should act, the tools I ought use, the ways in which I ‘should’ think. The world is full of norms for the neurotypical, even full of remedies and concoctions for recovery and sanity, all of which do not work on me. I can’t go to therapy, as I know more than any therapist I have met, and can psychoanalyze them within the first moments of the first meeting—seeing straight into their insecurities, power-struggles and attachments.
I have proved doctors wrong, too, time and time again, based on my gift of keen research and self-awareness. I know myself inside and out; I know my body inside and out. And as a result of my intellectual and instinctual capacity, all the places ‘typical’ people seek out for comfort do me no good. In this there is no relief. There is no refuge. There is ultimately nowhere to go.

The only way is through it. Through the bleakness and drudgery. Through the hellish thoughts. Over and over through, until I come out returned.

No friends can help, definitely no foe. I don’t need foes. I punish myself enough. I shall never be good enough, kind enough, or loving enough. It’s not a matter of perfectionism. As I have said, the ways of the ‘typical’ aren’t my way. I am that dichotomy again, as I know I am good, I know I am enough, I know I am love, but then I know naught. There is that perpetual swinging, of self too, from one view to the next, never stagnant and never truly grounded.

Belief systems, religions, rituals, magic, or what have you, those don’t work either. Temporary bandages or bondages, considering the source, until I analyze them and their happenings to no end and find the loop holes, the questions, the reality behind the illusion.

I often wish I was more blinded to the ways of world, a bit more oblivious, a bit less aware, that I believed there was a something or someone out there in which to seek refuge. This isn’t to mean I don’t have faith, as I am sure some will conclude so, based on their perceptions and rigid belief systems. The truth is I have a faith, a blind faith, and that is what leads me to write, and teaches me the vulnerability of truth heals. Still, there is an overbearing loneliness in the rawness of truth.

The isolation is evident on all planes. I had for the stretch of most of my life sought out priests, reverends, psychologists, psychiatrists, spiritual healers, astrologists, herbalists, shamans, teachers, professors, energy workers, and the like. Over and over they saw in me what they wanted to see, and nothing beyond. No one could penetrate me and get through me. No one could truly see me. In the end, my search accentuated my isolation, only added to my fever for connection and knowing.

I live my life questioning truth: the truth of everything. And then reaching the conclusion and revelation of the lack of valid truth, I spin back into the oblivion of not knowing. I live my life questioning if I am truthful enough. I worry about the slight chance of accidental manipulation on my part that might occur based on my own want and desire. I don’t even like to wish. Who am I to wish? I worry about being self-focused. I worry about being me. And everywhere, in vast unwavering quantity, is this judgment, these unspoken rules; these people being who they are and questioning who I am. And I am ransacked by their ways. I hide, I escape, I try to be nowhere and be no thing, but then the isolation is magnified and brought up to jet speed, and I long for the company again. I take strangers and their judging eyes over nothing.

I am intense. I am remarkably smart. I am keenly aware. I am often misunderstood, misinterpreted, and misjudged. My only saving grace is in having learned to love others unconditionally. I see past it all—every preconceived notion and every label. I don’t care what you are or who you are. I just love. It doesn’t matter to me your job, your race, your creed, your habits, your ways. I just love. And I long to be loved that way in return, to be looked upon with the grace of the all-knowing, and to be penetrated with complete acceptance.

Sometimes I don’t think the issue at hand is coming to terms with accepting myself or knowing myself completely. Sometimes I don’t think it is about anything at all, beyond coming to terms with the fact that most people will never see my value and uniqueness because they are too blinded by their own disillusionment of fear.

This post is dedicated to my dear friend Pascal. We will miss you.

495: Hard

I have Aspergers. And it’s hard.

1. The constant search in my head for better words that define more accurately the truth I am feeling, even as I am so hyper-analytical I cannot pinpoint the truth.
2. The times I need to curl in a corner and cry with the imaginary arms of someone around me, and then sobbing uncontrollably, as I realize like all the times before, there is no one there.
3. The truth of my isolation and how no one will ever be able to slip into my mind and understand.
4. Limbo. Not knowing the fullness of a situation enough to let my mind rest and being an unwilling victim to the trickling thoughts of what if, and why, and when.
5. Counting the minutes until I can sleep, hoping the sleep will help me escape the increasing thoughts of fear.
6. Saying goodbye to a moment of safety, to that time, or place, or wonderful person who made me forget enough of the world and myself to actually feel free and alive. And in that moment of the leaving, of the end, how the panic of reality rushes in and seizes my heart, mind, and spirit—a torrential storm rising within and pushing at me from without.
7. Realizing again and again I am different in a world that seems riddled with sameness. Understanding that the depths of me are so deep that even I get lost with no hope of escape.
8. Wanting to be seen, truly seen, and held and loved fully, so that the last sliver of my soul is felt, every part of me seeped into another and opened, accepted, and adored.
9. The discomfort of watching myself slip from one persona to the next, and as much as I try never knowing who I am, what I am, or how to be.
10. The way in which the world watches me and thinks they know who I am, and how utterly and entirely wrong they are in their conclusions and attempts to claim me as one of them, to turn me into the image they wish me to be.
11. The long minutes of anticipation in which time stops and my mind cannot rest. And in not resting, my body collapse immobile for a day or more, unable to accomplish the slightest task until the answers are grasped or at minimum processed, understood, and accepted.
12. The agonizing pain of not knowing, and knowing there is no knowing, but still being unable to stop the angst of limbo of not knowing.
13. The way in which I cannot grasp one tool or person or reasoning to assist me in my struggle for truth and comfort. The way in which nothing I believe in seems to last and the understanding that reality is fleeting, subject to the invisible winds of an invisible storm.
14. Telling someone I am kind and real and genuine, and knowing I am, but also knowing they don’t believe me.
15. Feeling like an alien. Feeling like an alien. Feeling like an alien.
16. The way in which I step back as observer and watch myself freak out and wig out and create chaos out of nothing, but still being unable to stop myself.
17. Listening to myself talk and hearing the constant running inner dialogue of how I could have said what I wanted to say in a clearer way. Or thinking I shouldn’t have spoken because what I said wasn’t kind enough, gentle enough, or needed.
18. Thinking anything I say isn’t needed, is irrelevant, or will just bury me and leave me alone. Thinking I want to be quiet and keep everything inside but knowing I can’t.
19. Wondering what the other person thinks of me, even as I know I am a good person and their opinion isn’t me, whilst analyzing all the pros and cons of self, and trying to come out on top, but eventually finding proof or evidence in the way I could and perhaps ‘should’ better myself.
20. Wanting desperately, more than anything in the entire world, to be held by someone who sees me, knows me, gets me, feels me, and wants nothing more than to be there at my side forever.

492: I am Still

I am still fighting self-instilled rules in my head.
I still bounce back and forth in thinking I can change the essence of me.
I still guilt myself into thinking something is wrong that needs altering.
I am still me.

I am still hurting from simple words spoken by another.
And still wonder what words that I speak cause harm.
I over evaluate my utterances, my actions, my unspoken thoughts, still.
I am still me.

I am still processing the concept of love.
I am still processing the concept of anger.
I am still baffled and cornered by both: the romantic and the raging.
I am still me.

I am still trying to understand how to be in this world.
I am still desperately alone in my isolation.
I am trying and trying to move out into the place of union, still.
I am still me.

I am still within myself, lost and searching.
I am still in a rainbow of thoughts.
Still, still, still drowning in the avenues of constant awareness.
I am still me.

I am still battling the voices that are never spoken.
I am still listening to a scenario in my head that doesn’t exist.
I am still defending myself before the enemy arises.
I am still me.

I am still giving it my all to become that which I am not.
I am still following the rules blindly that cause disaccord.
I am still trying to please those whom can’t be pleased.
I am still me.

I am still longing for passion and magic.
I am still searching for a place to call home.
I am still a traveler starved.
I am still me.

I am still questioning how one lives asleep when she is awake.
I am still wondering where the other piece of me exists.
I am still reaching for the star inside of me.
I am still me.

I am still questioning the places people go to seek comfort.
I am still exploring my own mind’s temporary truths.
I am still watching as observer as the world seems all but illusion.
I am still me.

I am still hoping and hoping and hoping for something or someone.
I am still wondering where he or it or we are.
I am still twirling in a whirlwind of open confusion.
I am still me.

I am still to the crying voice in my seasons.
I am still to the pounding heart in my chest.
I am still. I am still. I am still.
I am forever still me.

~ Sam Craft, Everyday AspergersPhoto on 4-19-14 at 6.42 PM