Monday, November 06, 2006

School Outside the Box

I guess that what Im describing here as "The School Outside the Box" is kind of like what people call the school of hard knocks, but I never really quite related to what I thought people meant by that expression.

You see, I used to hear especially older men, trying to relate to my experiance by descibing it as someone who had learned more from experiance than what was taught in school.While I have no formal education, my experiances never seemed to be that close to anyone elses. My experiances made me feel isolated. I certainly didnt want for it to be that way. There are so many times when I can think I probably would have done just about anything to fit in.

Eventually, I chose to quit trying to fit in. Unfortunately, I found few people that realised why I made that choice. To me it came quite natural since I had tried so hard the other way and I really just wasnt designed to be such a social creature. At least not to the degree that most people are. Let me put it this way: Im about as different from a "social butterfly" as a person could get.

I actually very rarely fit in. Actually, its quite the opposite. I mean I walk into a grocery store and everybody turns around to look at me. Who am I kidding, I walk into the snack bar at a state mental institution and everybody turns around. Thats really no exaduration. That has really happened to me.

My appearance is a bit different but thats not it. Maybe Im a little self-conscious but thats really not it either. Ive dealt with this all my life and I really hate it. Basically its a response to a sensory overload of mine. I walk into a place where the lights are too bright, the noise is too loud, there is too many peoples energy patterns from too many sources being transmitted into the atmosphere for my senses to differentiate and decifer what is occuring in my environment. Therefore I naturally gear up to try and deal with the situation. By doing this my energy is transmitted at a level that, along with my appearance and behavior that often seems awkward, people are confused. Maybe its just that the energy level that just startles them. Whatever, thats one thing I wish were different.

Ive been thinking about this lately in an even broader context. Society really places a great deal of emphasis on fitting in. It really doesnt matter so much which role you play as long as it is one that doesnt make others uncomfortable. I havent mastered the art of making people comfortable around me.

Now, Im learning from others that have similar differences that those aspects of me that are autistic can be seen as a neurodiversity. I think thats GREAT! So, there it is. Im just different amongst others who are also different. Now it should be easy, right? Instant conversion? I wish life were that easy, but I rather doubt that it is for anyone.

Celebrating in: show me how neurodiverse you can get? You bet! Im loving that part. Thats FUN! I would enjoy doing that part all day everyday. However, I want to at least inter-relate to others enough to be productive and add more to the finances of my home now that Im married. Then there is learning to BE married as in, learning to relate to my wife....with words....are you kidding? Everyday is a new adventure!

Then there is relating to others like Im starting to do on the internet. Some are autistic. Some have autistic family members. Most can relate to autistic traits in one way or another.... Find ways to relate to these people? Find commonalities with people with differences similar to mine? Thats a challenge that is worthy of my efforts. But, again everyday is a new adventure at what Im refering to as the "school outside the box"!


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home