Sunday, 02 July 2023

Gallery Stats

  • Images:   455
  • Categories:   102
  • Hits:   1015602
  • Comments:   13
  • Votes   311


The Quickening
Written by Richie Jarvis   
Friday, 09 February 2018 03:58


It is not really a secret anymore, but I found out in 2017 that I am autistic.

They used to call it Asperger's Syndrome, which I prefer, but the diagnostic manual changed, so now we are all Autistic. As opposed to the non-Autistic people, who are called Allistic. Whatever it is actually called, does not matter. The more I look back on my life, the more sense it makes. I have a pretty good memory. I've suppressed most of my childhood for years, because for me, an extremely emotional autistic person, it was extremely painful. And now, they are coming back, one by one. And every single one hurts today just as it did then. I do learn something about myself with each one though!

I used to have regular meltdowns as a child (which is what I learnt my tantrums were in 'Spectrum Speak'), and my Mum, bless her cottons, did her best, took me to the Doctors, took me to the child psyche, etc, etc. But no-one knew what to do....

One of the most painful things about my childhood was interaction with other kids. From my early childhood I remember clearly the day 'it' changed. The day that I was no longer tolerated by my peers. I was 6. I learnt very very early on that one-on-one with another human I could cope. My method: the same I use today - showing off! That is fine now, I realise now that I am going to continue to do things that interest me. If folks wish to look over my shoulder, that is fine too.  I suppose it is my way of socialising. I try not to shove it down others throats, but they keep asking me things, so I guess they wanna know, right?

Anyway, I digress...

Back then, that was devastating to me. I was an outcast. My eagerness to please became more and more obvious as I grew up, and the less and less I knew what I was doing wrong. I didn't get the rules. Written rules were not fine, but it was (and still is) the unwritten rules that trip me up. Why can Jane get away with that and I cannot? It is only now that I look back and realise quite how badly I didn't get the rules. I thought I was being treated unfairly. I got frustrated, I got angry, and then they started pushing buttons, because they got a reaction. And the cycle repeats, and still repeats to this day.... They are still out there, they just have different names nowadays.

Yes, I knew I was different, and no, I didn't want a label, or an excuse. They just seemed like cop outs, right? Well, sorta-kinda not it turns out. I am still learning, and having an annoyingly accurate memory for this stuff just, well, sucks.  But also is a bonus too.... Cos although it hurts, at least I can get a handle on what went wrong!

On the day of diagnosis I was free. I had an answer WHY. I suddenly didn't have to worry (so I thought) about stuff too much anymore. The weight lifted off on that day was amazing.

It was...

The Quickening

(Highlander.... Love that film)

Since then, I have been able to release my brain to work on shit I want it to.... mostly.

Don't get me wrong - I don't want any sympathy here.  I am not after a sainthood - I just want to put my own experience out there, because it turns out a lot of folks are in the same boat.  Wondering how they will survive the next day.  So if you read this, and it strikes a cord, well, do what works for you is what I am saying.


Instead of wasting huge effort (and you have NO idea how tiring it is unless you have done it) masking myself totally. Masking is another thing - copying - selecting little bits of Susan, and Greg, and Dinesh, and Jim, mashing it all together to try and make a face that works.....

But here is the catch.... It ONLY works for that person.

I have one for Gini, one for Emily, one for Sam, etc, etc. And sometimes they are incompatible. I will never forget taking one girlfriend home.  I couldn't function - I had to get out of the room, because the 2 masks were so totally incompatible.  I was paralysed.  The more people are present, the worse the problem, and the more tiring it is for me. But those that know me well make allowances. And for that I am glad.

Another example... Looking at people. I've always been good at this part, and as far as I know, folks have never noticed that I glaze over when looking at them. Silly things like getting distracted and pretending something caught my eye. All of it takes brainpower, and when you train yourself like I have, although not second nature, it is doable.

Another one.... Trying to work out what people were actually saying versus what their body language was saying.... People speak, words come out of their mouths. But does the body language match the words or intended action. Sometimes you get 3 signals, all in conflict. Mouth says one thing, head says another, body says something completely different. They might just be worrying, or stressed, but if I watch, I pick it up - I couldn't tell you what made me nervous of that person though, just that I don't trust them at that moment. You watch folks - the amount of out of sync communications that goes on is incredible. And I've had to teach myself that language.... I still get it wrong, but I am not too bad nowadays. (well, I hope anyway!)

I know none of this is actually important NOW this second, right? I mean, this stuff, well, it scars and hurts a bit, but I can cope, right?

That is what I thought.... Turns out, nope, if you do what I did and force all them emotions to the bottom of a pit, stick the most acceptable mask you can on and parade around copying people, it really fucks you up later on in life.... Depression is a bitch of a mistress.... Still, all this understanding seems to be helping with that part of it too, so onwards and upwards.

And so, in signing off, I will just say this....

I am free....
I am free to concentrate on the stuff I wish to in my own head.... sometimes
I am free to be me....

And seeing as it is currently 03:30am GMT, I guess that means I had to get this out before I could sleep..... Just another thing, insomnia. (4am now edited....)

Good Night Everyone!



Original: South Common Observatory - 2018-02-09T0400Z
Edit1: South Common Observatory - 2018-02-09T0400Z
Edit2: South Common Observatory - 2018-02-09T0415Z
(And probably more to come!)


Latest Images



Solar System Viewer

Copyright © 2023 All Rights Reserved.
Joomla! is Free Software released under the GNU/GPL License.

Creative Commons License

All images on this website are owned by Richie Jarvis or Emily Jarvis unless otherwise noted
They are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share Alike 2.0 UK: England & Wales License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license are be available at here