What autism defines

Most people who I’ve told that I’m autistic responded with a ‘really?’ They don’t see that stereotype rainman like autism in me. Neither did I. Which is why it took me a long time to look into autism and how it presents in different ways, some of which I do recognise within myself.

Most people, and I was one of them until recently, think of autism as this set of characteristics that every autistic person has. Like somehow every human is unique, except those with autism (or any other kind of neurological diversity or mental health condition.)

Why is it that no one blinks twice when someone has a broken leg, or a failing organ located in the gut, but when something is the matter with our brain we collectively stop thinking straight?

We assume, we flee, we judge. No one cares if you’ve got a funny looking toe, or in what way it looks different than yours and how this might compromise your ability to walk up straight. But if we stumble upon a brain that functions in a different way than our own, we all seem to loose our minds.

Aside from being autistic we’re pretty much the same as neurotypical folk in the sense that we are all unique as well and so is our autism. What you see about autism in the media is not all you get. I’ve noticed people have a hard time grasping this fact. Even in the autistic community some people have a very limited view of autism and if your autism cannot be defined within those limits you’re deemed not autistic enough.

Autism can’t be measured. Thankfully. Would you want to have your neurotypicality (is that a word? If not, it is now) measured along a scale of bad, good enough and perfect fit? Don’t you want to be seen for who you are instead of which box you fit in best? Mind you, I like my autistic box because it gives me a way to deal with things I find difficult in a way that actually works for my type of brain. But I’m still me and not all of me is part of autistic me.

Autism doesn’t define me, it doesn’t define my personality, it defines how my brain works. 

What I’m trying to say is that if you want to know what autism is, ask an autistic. If you want to know what autism is like, ask an autistic. Ask several. Ask as many as you can. Because it’s different for all of us. And while you’re at it, ask about us too.

Autism doesn’t define a person, a personality does. So get to know us just as you would like to get to know anyone else.

When plans are cancelled

when plans are cancelledYou go out and buy food and wander around your neighbourhood. And you lay down on the bed and day dream and think about what other people wrote.

You cook dinner for one, an awesome dinner for one, because you decided that there’s no excuses to not eat an awesome meal every day, even if it’s just for you.

You read blogs like this one and this and this old favourite that you’ve been following for six years now according an old facebook post you stumbled upon. You think about how you would always refer to her and her blog as the copywriter girl. That’s how he knew you got a certain idea or recipe from her blog. You think about him and how you’d go out tonight and eat ramen. And you hope he feels better soon and you wish you knew how to make ramen yourself.

Instead you make this mean chanterelles pasta, recipe curtesy of the copywriter girl.

On love

on loveIt’s been seven weeks since we spent that lovely summer afternoon at the open air museum. Sipping beers into which my tears fell. He bought me a strawberry tartlet, my favourite, to wipe away the tears and put a smile back onto my face.

Breaking up is never easy, but somehow I find it even harder when things have just run its course. No one to be angry at. No one caused this, it just happened, or at the very least we both let it happen.

We still talk and laugh and remain friends. Which is the best possible outcome i think. Yet this all makes the past seven years seem like such a blur. Like its fading away.

I don’t want it to become a distant memory, and at the same time I do because I look forward to what the next seven years will bring. Endless possibilities, that’s where I’m at right now. That freedom feels suffocating and liberating at the same time. Guess that’s what happens when you decide together to each go your own separate ways: all of a sudden everything has opposite sides.

On blogging again

on blogging againBlogging feels like something from a past life. It’s been so long, I tried so many different things over the past 15 years. Writing about everyday life, writing about food, writing about art, about books. And as I sit here in my new apartment I thought to myself, why not blog again? About whatever I like. About everything I’ve blogged before. About my life and all the bits and pieces. Including food, art and books. What would that look like, what would it feel like to once again process the world around me via words?  Continue reading “On blogging again”