This week has been an amazing week! On Sunday I watched the Celebrity Apprentice knowing that I would write an article for Autism Speaks. This was my first experience writing an article on a television event, and it was an unique challenge, but it turned out great.
Yesterday I gave my four hour presentation to police officers on "what is autism/asperger" and tips on how to communicate more effectively.
I love doing events or having assignments such as the one on Sunday because it gives me a role. In my book I talk about the "Alias" factor and its importance in my life. Sunday was a breeze because that day I was a reviewer, and yesterday was easy because I was the "author guy who knows what Asperger syndrome is." Then came last night.
Yesterday evening I was exhausted. But more than being exhausted, I was out of "alias" mode. I was myself and being myself is so open-ended.
For you to understand what I am talking about, let me say what exactly this "Alias" mode is. An "Alias" is a role I play. When I flag I am simply the flagman and there really isn't anything personal about it. When I do a presentation I may be talking about myself, but I am doing so from playing a role.
I had trouble at recess in school because of how open ended and chaotic it was. I didn't realize what I was doing at the time, but I knew I had to have some order in my life so I became the kickball referee. Having that position gave me rules to enforce, and rules to live by. It limited the amount open ended events that could happen.
Yesterday evening I was back to being myself. There was no role to play and no set rules in the social structure. I feel powerless in these times because I don't know what to do. I can go from being a powerful talker, to being barely able to muster a sentence by just one change in roles.
These changes are getting easier as my aliases are becoming stronger and lasting a bit after the presentation. Is this what practice does? Am I just learning how to talk, or perhaps becoming a bit more comfortable in a social setting?
I don't know those answers, but I am back to being myself. I look forward to Friday since I have two presentations that day and a nice two-hour drive each way.
Friday night will come and I may go back to being myself without an alias. Who am I, exactly? I'm not really sure. That's why I write.