I’ll tell you why it isn’t as horrible as I thought. I mean YeS there are the noticeable grays on the crown of my head, the black circles, the stubborn fat that just won’t vanish and my vision is slowly going. However, for me being in this new milestone has taught me many confident boosting lessons.
Kinda sucks it took me this long but only now have I realized how NOT to be so self conscious. My actions and decisions should not be based on how others think I should be living my life. It just occurred to me that all my life I’ve always looked at strangers or my friends or family for their looks of approval. Depending on how their faces look I change my actions to appease people. I’ve even written a poem about being a mood ring during my college years. It’s really sad but at least I’ve learned to be myself and do what I want because damn it I’m a good decent person. I don’t need to see who’s frowning at me for my actions. I just simply give 0 f@&$s now and I continue to act the way I want without knowing how others view me. I’m working hard to be more assertive and vocal and stick to my guns in heated discussions.
I’ve also learned to own it. I admit my weaknesses and have realized when I do then people can’t use those things against me. The biggest revelation I’ve opened up about is my lifelong anxiety disorder. Talking openly about my anxiety and how it affects my actions and fear has made others in my life more understanding. Honestly it’s refreshing how my friends can’t put me down or argue with me when they know it’s anxiety related.
Most important I’ve learned to find laughter each and everyday.
As a parent with an autistic child, do you ever find yourself conflicted with how you should feel after you just told someone for the first time about your child? I am much stronger now than I used to be obviously. I’m not as easily hurt or emotional when talking about Andrews autism. But I find different peoples different reactions and responses interesting. I don’t blame other people who are not in my shoes in any way. I suppose I’m just writing this entry because I after 10 years of this journey I still get mixed feelings. Some people respond with “Oh I’m sorry to hear that.” My usual thinking is “Oh but wait his autism isn’t that tragic? Why are you apologizing?” However I get it because most people see it as a devastating thing and they’re just offering their sincere apology. Or most I guess don’t know exactly how to react. Others response will be a straight face no emotions followed by an “Oh” or “Okay” with a pause obviously waiting for me to continue telling them more. I also often find myself thinking inside why aren’t you phased by what I just said? Or do you know what autism is or the level of autism and what it does to your life? But then again I get it too. I understand that some people realize autism isn’t a tragedy so they’re not going to apologize nor show any sympathy. So why do I find myself in these situations wanting them to show me some sympathy. When in fact I know that when a person does apologize I honestly wish they weren’t so sad to apologize about Andrew’s autism. I honestly don’t know which response I like or feel most comfortable with but as I’m writing this I’m thinking maybe the most comforting ones are the people who respond by asking “what is autism exactly?” I think their honesty somehow comforts me in a way where I know they are genuinely have no knowledge and showing interest. Or maybe because this rarely happens where somebody does ask what autism is. Either way I would think after 10 years I would be a little bit unfazed by a people’s reaction but I guess I’m not.
Sometimes I just need to get out enjoy the fresh air, feel the coolness on my cheeks and stroll through life’s beauty. It’s free. It’s peaceful. It’s reliable. It’s not judgemental.
Sunset. Blue silver lining. December is full of anxiety ridden events. Actually it’s been pretty awful since Fall began. I’m starting to feel some relief since a few of those things have passed. But still few more to go. I already want the new year to be here!
This park is three homes down from our place. It’s Fall, the air is cool but the sun is shining, the trees are colorful, the neighborhood is peaceful. My safe haven which I never take for granted.