I spent yesterday glued to my inbox and glued to TouchPoint's Facebook page anxiously awaiting the next comment on the "Autism Is... Project". With each comment came a sense of awe and a sense of pride. I had spent 399 posts describing my world and my thoughts, but of everything I have done on here nothing has given me more motivation that yesterday.
There was a hint of irony yesterday in that in my afternoon presentation I gave someone asked something along the lines of, "How do you get the courage to leave the house?" Several years ago I didn't. Several years ago I would become so angry with myself in situations that saw me want to say something but I said nothing at all that I would find every excuse not to put myself in any social situations. The way this is achieved was to stay at home.
But where do I get the courage? Even today there are times when I want to talk but am unable. Of everything I endure this is the most annoying and saddening. Contrary to what you might think looking at me from the outside I do want to talk and I do want to be a part of that social world, but sometimes it is just to difficult. That being so I answered the question yesterday by saying, "If I want to continue my mission I must put myself out there. It isn't always easy, but there's a world that needs to be aware and understand autism."
In yesterday's comments I found hope, courage, and motivation. For those that commented I am sure life has its ups and downs, but autism is recognized. Think of those that don't know, or don't understand. If you are new to the spectrum, please read those comments and I hope you can see the hope in those words.
As I said, of everything I have done I think yesterday's post was my most special. When I blog I don't know how many, if any, people will read my words. You all came through with such amazing and profound words. I am going to put the "Autism Is..." entry on the side wall of my blog so it is always easily found so for all time people can add just what they think autism is.
So moving forward my passion towards my mission became ever stronger as think of all those people out there that deal with the spectrum but don't know what it is. Those who commented yesterday understand what it is. As I have said since the near beginning of this blog, "understanding is the foundation for hope." If you expect me to simply break out of my shell and start talking to people I have never met, well, I won't be the chatterbox at the table unless the conversation gets to my area of interest, or as I call it, "Kansas." The mission is clear though, to raise as much understanding as possible. It's not so much to be aware of it, but what is it? What does it feel like? Why do we do the things we do? This is why understanding is truly the foundation for hope and I am thankful that I have a forum and a stage to do that.
Life may not be the easiest for us, but for myself I wouldn't change a thing. Yes, I still get frustrated with myself when I want to talk to a person but walk by without saying a word, but that's me. If I were different then I'd be different and I have grown to like me the way I am. I do always look at ways to improve who I am, but I understand the elements in play in my life. From understanding I have been able to grow. I hope the words I have written before, the ones here now, and the words I have yet to write all help anyone and everyone grasp the spectrum just a little bit more. Yes, the mission is clear and thank you for being along for the journey.