Monday, November 18, 2013

Autism is...

Written by likethedreamersdo

Autism is the lens through which I am finally beginning to see myself clearly. Autism is the reason I left college, but not the reason I didn’t go back. Autism is knowing that all the ways I have felt different throughout my life were for a reason. Autism is validation.

Autism is not feeling less than. Autism is creativity. Autism is seeing the world in different colors than most. Autism is not letting emotions get in the way of logic. Autism is bottling it up until it explodes.

Autism is complicating my social life. Autism is needing space and time. Autism is being an extrovert whose energy is drained by social interaction. Autism is not being able to hold a full-time job without help. Autism is growing up just a little slower than everyone else. Autism is knowing that most of my friends and family can never fully understand. Autism is trying to have the patience to teach my parents anyway.

Autism is getting a disability pass for the T, but not without internal reservations. Autism is the knowledge that the world no longer sees me as a whole person. Autism is heartbreaking sometimes, but not for the reasons you think it is.

Autism is hard work. Autism is constantly explaining myself, over and over, to the same people in the same way and hoping that they’ll get it this time. Autism is not an excuse.

Autism is not who I am.

Autism is an inextricable part of me.


(Author’s Note: I was recently diagnosed with PDD-NOS at 25, having felt my whole life that something was different about me in a very fundamental way and never understanding what it was or why. This diagnosis has been a relief and a revelation. I’m profoundly grateful for it, and for the resources I’ve found so far, online and off, through the autistic community. I don’t feel disabled, which is what I most want to impart to neurotypical people. I feel exactly the same as I always did, and very appreciative of those who have said it better than I can and who regularly validate my feelings.)

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