Who am I ? Well that certainly is a question I’m still addressing. As a very late diagnosed autistic I have lived a life without ” autism interventions” and at this stage of being I continue questioning and reflecting upon my upbringing, my passions, life trajectory and ongoing light bulb moments.
How do I identify? A very difficult question to answer as I don’t see myself as being predominately this or that to the exclusion of other aspects that I may have or have not yet encountered. Not trying to be obstructive here so I’ll relate an incident from my early thirties:
- Invited to a Fancy Dress Party I was overjoyed to be asked ( an extremely rare occasion) but had no way to relate to this activity… I had no desire to be any historical or celebrity figure etc. and no way of imagining anything other than to bizarrely be myself… adding a few outrageous touches of glamour I drew a large ? on my bare arms. When asked “who I “was or what “I was” all I could answer was a human being. I wasn’t trying to be funny or a smart arse I was just telling the truth. I wasn’t asked my name.
- I knew that I was supposed to classify myself as something ( adopted persona) so I failed that social test with first class honours. As myself I also knew that I was more than any one aspect of my life and it was difficult to choose one over another. I was a visual artist, a dancer, a teacher, a poet a student of various disciplines and would continue be so for many more decades.
- If I knew what I now know I may have replied that I’m classified as being autistic/asperger’s but does that really say who I am ?… I am fluid, a being in flux as I explore my relationship with self and the external world/s.
This is the serious side but I can also be quite bizarre … making up silly ditties singing them, stimming them …offbeat word associations but all that I keep quite private….other people can see some of my ways of thinking and relating as humouress when I’m serious and miss my playful humour … viewing it as weird.
In my later years I’ve been living a reclusive rural lifestyle and contribute my voice in the areas associated with autism research.