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Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Weathering the Storm

There is a major change in my life looming. I should feel really excited about it, but I don't at the moment because of another incident in my life.

It's weird writing this now because, as when I wrote my first book I was writing about things that took place a year, or years previously. And even when I wrote my books that haven't been published yet I knew there would be years between the event and the words seeing the light of day. With that said I will omit the incident and just focus on the effects.

One of the most difficult things I experience is my great skill at being self-defeating. I know I'm not alone on this front as I hear this rather frequently at presentations from parents and others on the autism spectrum. What is this skill at being self-defeating? I've written about this many times and explained it many ways and each time I experience it I forget just how much of a gut-punch it is. Anyway, to put simply, it is the way the mind thinks and reacts when something goes either wrong or not as planned.

When something wrong happens it is the only thing focused on. This is one of the reasons why I prevented myself from caring about school grades because, if I strove for perfect, a 99% would not be good enough. Granted, elements in life are more complicated than a A, B, C, D, or F scale, but the way I reacted then is the same.

With the example I gave above I guess I could also tie in my, "When you see what you're not you forget who you are." concept because I wouldn't see that I was a person who got 99 out of 100 right but rather I would see, focus, and obsess on that one I got wrong. This is sort of where I am at right now.

Another thing that makes life with Asperger's difficult is that I have an all or nothing system. Either everything is all right or everything is on the level of a catastrophic disaster. When an event is big enough to, say, trigger a major emotional response everything else that was tolerable quickly becomes overwhelming.

The next line of thought that occurs is that how I feel now is how I will feel forever. The ability to think of and understand progression and time is something I have always struggled with. This is the reason why so many of us on the spectrum give answers to questions regrading, "what's wrong?" with "everything" and why we so often say, "things will never get better" because in our minds the fact that the sun will rise tomorrow eludes us. There will be a chapter in my 2nd book entitled, "Past, Present, and Oblivion" that expands on this thought.

So there is a storm going on within me right now. Even though I just wrote the fact that the sun will rise, time moves on, and the fact that the pains of today will eventually become just a memory I feel, right now, as if now is forever. I know, somewhere within me, that it isn't, but I feel like it is and right now, that's the only thing I'm feeling. 

2 comments:

  1. This post really explained a lot to me tonight, thank you.

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  2. So what gets you out of that feeling? If logically you know, "this too shall pass" so to speak, do you have any coping mechanisms that work for you? Does spirituality play a role in helping you become more balanced and let go a bit of the here and now emotions? Very Curious. Thank you so much for sharing as I'm sure you are helping many people. I am a Speech-Language Pathologist at the elementary school level and work with several kiddos on the spectrum. Thanks Aaron! Julie

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