I have been sitting on this story since the second week of bowling (September) but have not written about it. Each week I think it won't happen again and for the past three it has been a non point. Last night though, while having the best night of the year, it happened again.
The first game last night I started with a spare and then had seven strikes in a row before getting a couple spares for a 250something game. The second game wasn't as good, but I had fixed the mistake and was confident for the third game. Then it happened.
If you have followed my blog since last April you may remember the ordeal I had at the Saint Louis Blues game. The tap on the shoulder from a person outside my visual range is still an issue and for some reason it has happened quite often at the bowling alley.
As the third game was about to start a person who always wants to know how I am bowling came up behind me as I was talking about the Daytona 500 with my team and tapped me on the shoulder several times. Each time the approach is like this I am practically unable to talk as the anxiety flows through my body. My pulse picks up and I feel as if I could run three marathons in a row because there is so much energy in my system after this.
Ever since the first time this happened I wanted to tell the person, "Please don't tap me." but I am unable to. Why? I don't really know. I do know asking for things is highly difficult and I don't want to make the person mad. In my willingness to not make him mad though I keep getting tapped on the shoulder and having these episodes.
After this tap I tried to settle back in, but when one's heart rate accelerates rapidly and there is a shot of adrenaline one's state of mind will not be what it was beforehand. After being clean for the first two games I had four opens in the first five frames and I don't remember my final score but I think it was under 140.
What aggravates me today about this is that I have the power to stop this. I could so easily state, "Please don't..." but I haven't up to this point. Before you yell aloud of how simple the solution may seem let me tell you that I feel picking the 7-10 split is easier than asking for something. So often other people on the spectrum will have a situation like this and they will not confront the issue. Over time the tension builds and what could have been a simple fix by stating, "Please don't...." turns into something more severe.
I can tolerate the taps on the shoulder without any other behaviors except having my bowling scores do way down. For me this is easier than the solution, but I never have been good at advocating for myself. What I do hope you understand from this is that when things bother us it is very difficult to simply state what it is and what we would like. I just hope in the future this never happens as I am nearing a perfect game.