Today is world autism awareness day.
What does that mean for me? To me it means awareness of myself. I’m self diagnosed high functioning autistic, with a nod of agreement from the Psycologist I was seeing at the time because she can’t say yes without doing the tests, but both of us knew so why spend the money..
She had recently diagnosed my daughter as high functioning autistic, and in that process Bernie and I had gone throught the symptoms and realised; that’s me, I do that, I can seen that in me, yes, yes, I used to do that, hmmmmmm, I’m seeing a pattern.
So, I’m on the autism spectrum, so is my 12yo daughter. My wife and 9yo daughter are NTs (Neuro-Typical) a great way of saying normal when you know there is no such thing as normal..
Awareness. I’m slowly become aware of myself, my need for space and quiet. Why something as simple as someone tapping a rhythm on the table can slowly drive me to the point where if I don’t catch it in time, my volcano just explodes and it gets ugly for a while… It gets better with age, and with reading and understanding. I sometimes know the signs. Bernie knows the signs even better, and I’m learning to trust her when she says I need to stop or take a break or walk away.
Being high functioning autistic (formerly known as Aspergers, which was easily shortened to Aspie, maybe I need to try for HFA) means logically being right almost all the time. What happens when a HFA parent tries to parent a HFA child? A small war, is what. Usually with 2 meltdowns, a tired referee and scared younger child.
What does awareness mean? It means being aware of the Autustic people you know (and might guess). It also means being aware of the NTs that look after them and surround them, love them and have their hearts broken by them. We might even be the lucky ones, we are high functioning, we speak, we can go to the toilet on our own. There are those than can not, and families that surround them and work tirelessly (more likely permanently tiredly) to look after them.
Be aware, but not alarmed. Just love us, and give us the space we need at times. Love the ones we care about and care for us..
Have an awesome day.