Cruel indifferance

Some times the worst part about Asperger’s syndrome isn’t how it makes me feel or over emote. Some times it’s cruelest of all to me when an earth shattering event happens in my life. I know I should feel heart broken, saddened, devastated, inconsolable. but the vast landscape of my emotions are as dry and barren as the Serengeti.

My friend died last night around 2 am from brain cancer. I know I should feel something right now. I love my friends very much and in a lot of respects CJ could relate to me in ways that many people couldn’t. I know that I’m never going to see her again. I’ll never sit with her as she makes origami, and I knit during a craft night, I’ll never see her smile, or hear her laugh, or her delightful words of encouragement when I’m not sure of my self. I’ll take to the grave the memory that the last time I ever saw her she wanted to give me a hug and I was just not up for being touched that day.

I’ll always question if I was a good enough friend. when she was in the hospital, I couldn’t fight my way threw the emotional triggers of being in a hospital to go visit her. I couldn’t even make  single crane for her. All I could do was sit by the side lines and let her husband know he and CJ were in my thoughts.

I wish I could feel. I wish I could register in my brain the sensations and flood of emotions that should be occurring right now. But I’m unable to register the ‘normal’ or ‘appropriate’ spectrum of emotions that I know are what the situation calls for. And I don’t know what to do about it.

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uncomfortable conversations with your Goddess.

A little explanation is in order so people don’t get the wrong idea, or think this is weird. I worship the Greek Goddess of the hunt Artemis (amongst others but for the sake of this post Artemis is the Goddess who is important.) For some time I have been seeking some one, who is Pagan, or at very least tolerant of my Paganism and going to treat it with the same respect I do; to hunt me. Now mind you I’m not talking with a bow and arrow, or a rifle or any of that. To the outsider in truth it would most likely resemble an adult version of hide and go seek. Some people (the non pagans among your ranks mostly) may ask what purpose does being hunted by a female friend serve for me. Simply speaking it is a way to connect with that particular Goddess. Just as when I start working a forge I’ll be connecting with Hephaestus, or when I strategist, do arts, and protect those who can’t stand up for them selves I’m connecting with Athena. Well to be hunted is how I connect with Artemis. It’s sort of like my version of getting on my knees and having a silent conversation with an unseen astral person.

The tricky part is finding just the right person to help me with that particular religious connection. This may sound easy but it’s more then just finding some one to run around the woods chasing after me. It has to be a genuine hunt. I have to allow my self to become my most vulnerable to her, Then once captured I am taken to a safe place to be held in a symbolic forcing me to face my insecurities knowing that some one willing to speak for my Goddess has my back. And when I say speaking for my Goddess,  mean in the entirety of this religious purification I am seeing that person as the embodiment and personification of Artemis.   This means she has to know this, understand it, and respect it, because it is sacred to me.

A little while ago I found one person who fit the bill. She is pagan, she is extremely knowledgeable and I trust her completely. So some what tentatively I approached her and asked her if she would consider the undertaking of occasionally helping me with this endeavor. For completely understandable reasons she turned me down (conflict of deity homage issues.)

A week has gone by with out incident. How ever last night as I slept I was approached by Artemis. Normally she’s kind of vague about her intent, but in this one she made no qualms about it. She was upset with me. Not to the point that I’d lost her favor, more like.. scolding disappointed mom voice upset. I was unintentionally very rude to my friend because she would have been in violation to another cultures hunting Goddess… who would have been quite unhappy she was invoking another entity. I got a very strict ‘never do that again.’ I was further informed that if I ever do accomplish becoming my friends prey, that I would do so honoring her deity of choice, as a sign of respect for she who is hunting me. Should my friend read this I want to apologies to her with out revealing too much of her identity. I did not mean to be so rude

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I know I worship them and all but….

Last night I had an experience that made me question if it would kill the Greek Gods to use an ode of subtlety, or at least be unsubtle in a way that would not bring me near financial ruin, and far too closer to meeting Lord Hades in person then I’d personally prefer this early in my life. Hermes (the God I prey to when I travel to see me safely to the place I’m going) last night decided to be less then subtle about making sure I learn a lesson about how scary the world out side of the window is. He threw me off the road and down a steep hill, and was good enough to stop short of smashing me against a tree in a deep water hole. I escaped unharmed, the right people came across me in a way that made the process relatively painless. The largest harm that came of it was mental. The willingness to step out side my door much less drive a two thousand pound bullet (much less an 80,000 pound one) is gone. I’m still going to try or the nightmares may never go away. One was so vivid that for what seemed like hours I was convinced I was laying in a field impaled by a fence post or tree amidst crash debris watching helplessly as the men and women silhouetted by flashing lights tried to figure out how to save me, and that making it thru the ordeal unharmed, and coming home to my own bed safely and talking to my friends again was all just an injury induced hallucination

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Funny dreams, How does thing work again?

So last night I had a dream. In this dream I had just gotten home from my first long road haul. My hair was long and completely unkempt I was rocking the father of all five o’clock shadows. I was so fresh from my first haul in fact that I stopped at Jackson from for the event on the way home. With my rig parked, and my uniform donned I started the mile long walk from the truck all the way back to cav camp. I had been noticed by the brigades three gal troopers simultaneously as I heard Alisha, Jess, and Tabetha all squeak out ‘Johnny!’ in perfect unison. and then the epic group tackle hug happened. This was followed by the observation that I needed to shave, and a good hair combing. To much protest from my end, some one produced a shaving mug and brush and a a razor and a comb. Alisha handed them over and I tried to play coy. “How do I use this thing again?” This was responded to by Tabetha. “This can go one of two ways… you can shave, or we can do it for you.  Think wisely before you answer.” So begrudgingly I quickly took to shaving my self. I started to try to comb my hair out but thankfully Jess who was used to having long hair where I was not grabbed the comb and said ‘here.’ I felt a little bit stupid but at least by the end of it I looked like a relatively decent looking human being. I asked every one if they wanted to see what’s been keeping me away from the brigade for so long and it was generally agreed upon that a ride was needed because it’s been too long. Tab asked Tim if she could ride Joey, and A friend of the unit William was asked if Steven could ride Bullet. Every one was mounted up and I lead the way out to the semi-truck parked in the far back corner of the spectator parking area. It was a gorgeous International Cascadia  I had a lot of civil war related art taped on the wall, and the sleeper cab was kept neatly.  There was some jokes made, and by this point the dream was starting to fade. But the little bit I can remember of it makes me smile.

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The hardest thing I’ve ever had to do

Today I’m heart broken. It’s a necessary heart break. My best friend in the world for the last 5 years is an indomitable source of strength to me. This is a woman who on some level I have loved her more then words could express since the day I’ve met her. I say this with out fear of what her boyfriend will think because I know him, and he’s an awesome dude, and he knows my bond with Tab. I know he understands that by love I mean that I love her on a level where I can’t imagine life with out her in it. That I am her Johnny, and I always will be, just as she is and always will by my Tabetha. She’s a woman that has never been selfish even once in the five years I’ve known her, she has given, and given, and asked for nothing in return, and yet tonight she admitted to me she wanted to be. The fact that my absence necessary as it maybe for the next year, drives her to tears. That was heart wrenching. I’ve seen this woman cry exactly twice in the few years in which she’s been a major player in my life. The first time she did it was the result of a person who I honestly am glad I was prevented from going after, because that would have ended poorly for every one involved. The second time was just this past July, and that ended in her spilling out of her saddle into my waiting arms. (she was in pain like a lot of it and I was there to catch her.)

This next year will be as hard on me as I know it will be on her. I will do every thing in my power to fight and see to it that I get to at least a couple of events if I’m able, and I won’t tell her I’m coming, because I want to see the expression  of joyful shock on her face when I walk up to her and give her that timid ‘I missed you’ smile. I will miss the late nights, where I can’t sleep, she knows it, and comes out of the tent for a few minutes to sit with me at the campfire. I’ll miss the early mornings where I hand her a cup of coffee with sugar and creamer in it just the way she likes it, and tell her ‘you look very pretty this morning Petey’ and she gives me that ‘hush you’ smile as she glances over the coffee cup at me between sips. I’ll miss coming back to camp exhausted after the battle, helping her tend to Diamond, and then we collapse on opposite sides of her saddle and share it as a pillow for a little cav nap. I’ll miss most of all above each of these the times where I seem to be the only one who can read her. So I’ll walk into her tent, knowing she’s feeling ill, and feeding her gatoraid and water in short sips and just sitting with her soothing back her hair to be of some comfort, and when she looks at me knowing she’ll say “I want you to go away and leave me alone I don’t want you to see me like this.” and I’ll respond with the ever vigilant. “And you know just like every other time, that I’ll do that once I am satisfied that you’re ok.” And then she’ll skulk at me for a moment before relenting.

The things that will get us threw this year. Tabetha is never far from me. In fact she occupies that little spot roughly the size of my fist in the center of my chest. She’s living rent free there eternally. On my really bad days. I’ll take a moment, breath in deep, and imagine her smile, and concentrate on the memory of how she smells when I hug her, and suddenly just like that, I’ll be better. I know that she has a particularly fond thought of me that she’ll cling to in her really hard times when she needs me, and if she can’t do it with out the sound of my voice, she knows my number, she knows to call, and I know that if I needed to talk day or night and I didn’t… she’d kick my butt next time she saw me.

We can’t choose who we love, we can choose how we love them. For me love is a universal emotion, and one that I’ve felt in abundance for certain people. Tab is my safe place, my harbor in a storm swept sea, the person who can pull me out of a panic attack just by squeezing my hand and telling me that she’s the only one there.  This year that I am on the road making my self financially solvent will be the hardest year of my life. I’m undergoing it so that I can continue to be the Johniest Johnny that she needs me to be. Some people are worth going through the hard times for.

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An open letter to my Mounted trooper

You once asked me how I’m usually very happy even when people (often that I’m close to) openly treat me like crap, (often with out realizing that’s what they’re doing.) It’s because I look at the world (when I’m brave enough to go out and experience it first hand) threw proverbial built in rose colored glasses. I choose to see the best in people, and situations. Even if the experience or the person suck mostly all together. With out fail I find (even if I have to stretch the reality of it all,) the good in every thing. My bum knee, own migraines, tendency to be flooded by the emotions of others, and the fact that most of my nerve endings were fried by a very sudden growth spurt when I was young? Yes I suffer from all these things but it hasn’t been with out merit or benefit.

My knee makes me more empathic towards people with limited mobility, and often helps me brighten some ones day, or make their day a little easier. Because of my migraines I’ve learned to look for the indicators when you’re starting to have one, and I’ve learned mechanisms to help my dearest friend get threw those difficult times. (Usually this involves keeping people from crowding you at events and doubling my efforts for taking care of Diamond on the picket line and taking care of your tack for you before and after the battle, one less thing for you to worry about.) The flooding I suffer from others emotions. It makes people more comfortable by my presence. It doesn’t happen all the time, and as I get to better know people, I learn more efficiently how to shield my self, and manage that butter zone in between ‘just what they need’ and ‘that’s just too much for me to handle.’ My nerve endings (more specifically my pain receptors were fried when I was younger, when I shot from roughly 5’1” and 100 lbs. with rocks in my pockets to 6’1” and 150 lbs. with rocks in my pockets in a little under a month and a half. The constant growing pains and shin splints made me pretty much numb to all but the worst of pain. This allows me to do things that a person with average pain resistance just wouldn’t do. Though in fairness I probably shouldn’t be doing them, your brain tells you not to do those things for a reason.

The good doesn’t negate the bad. The good is simply what I choose to emphasize on. Yes my knee occasionally screws up, and makes me not get as much enjoyment out of a given situation as I normally would. Yes my migraines hurt to an unspeakable level and I just want to curl up into my own little blanket fort and not be bothered, but this passes, and when you suffer from it. Yes I over work my self and ignore my own well being and can take my self out of action really quick. But this is never a down side to me. You’re my best friend in the world, I love you, I’ve done it before and I will do it again with out hesitation when the need arises. My tendency to be flooded by the emotions of others, can be terrifying, and traumatic. I have been laid up for days from the emotional back lash because of it, but again this only tends to happen when it needs to happen, when people are at their worst emotionally and need a hero. My pain tolerance can be a horrible thing if I don’t manage it properly. I could be badly wounded, recognize the wound, and choose to ignore it to my own detriment. (I’ve only done this twice because the situation called for it.)

So there’s my secret, for your consideration. Use it if you wish, and know I’ll always be here for you with a great big hug when you need or want one. After all when I get married to that very special some one. You’re my best person.

Love always
Your dismount/Your Johnny.

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Depression and realisation

First I want to express that while I know there are those of my friends that will instinctively worry about me when they read this. Please don’t. I’ll be ok, yes it’s tough but it’s not a new fight to me, and while I may let it get me down, I don’t let it get me out. Now that I have said that….

“Stab me again the pain lets me know that I’m still here, that the vast and grey and murky depths haven’t consumed me, causing me to be the nothing that I feel like on a nearly daily basis.” That’s really what I’m some times saying when I tell my friends that I’m happy for them when they regale me with stories about their happy love lives. I know that it’s not what they mean to do, I know it’s not their intention to jab me with tiny invisible daggers, and for them, I hide my pain and strife. It’s never really all that clear when I’m going to be angst, sad and depressed over my destitute singleness. So incase you’re wondering no I don’t always feel that way when you share about your happiness. Nine times out of ten I am genuinely overwhelmed with happy for you and please don’t stop sharing just because you know that some times it’s jabbing me with an invisible knife and then rubbing salt in the brand new wound with all the gentle caress of a fire ant as it bites and nips at a restrained victim.

“Words cannot express how much I want to punch you for saying that right now, so I’m just going to go with this trusted stand by.” Is what I’m really saying most of the time when I’m told “I don’t see why you’re complaining? Being in a relationship isn’t really all it’s cracked up to be, I miss being single;” and I respond with “I suppose but it just doesn’t feel that way to me.” or when I respond with “That is easy to say for some one who hasn’t been single for their entire adult life.” More importantly when you say those things in response to my state of depression over being single, you use those words to address my fears that I will die alone. You express a complete devaluation of the very real pain and fears I’m feeling in that moment. In the same breath, you taunt me with that which I desire and then throw it into oncoming traffic only to get obliterated by an oncoming semi-truck by saying that you don’t even want your relationship that you’re in, that you feel constricted by it. It makes me want to scream at Olympus, demanding answers from Cupid and Aphrodite them selves why they waste the gift of love on people like you.

(Sarcastic voice) “Ohh yeah let me get right on that whole over coming the crippling fear and social anxiety. I’ll just magically pull the ability to breath in large crowds and meeting new people out of my ass.” Is what I’m really saying when I give a dismissive response of any nature to your suggestions that I just go out to new venues and try to meet people. Yeah because it’s not like I have never actually tried that before. It’s not like I know how my body is going to react because my mind starts to evaluate every nightmarishly horrible scenario that could play out in the new place that I’m experiencing. No matter how unlikely or implausible those scenarios might be that are playing out, the abject terror that I feel because of them are very real, and I want to curl up into a ball and cry. Little secret, some times I do, and if you think not being able to talk is unattractive to most people? Just imagine what crying, in a corner, in the fetal position will do for your dating credibility.

“I don’t waste my time on lost causes” is what I hear when you refuse to assist me by possibly introducing me to a friend that’s single. Yes your motivation maybe to help me by forcing me to wade into the waters of the dating pool alone. But I wouldn’t be asking you for help in the first place if I didn’t think I needed it.

I’ve reached that stage in my life where I’ve come to a sort of depressed acceptance. I will most likely die alone many years from now. Statistically your ability to find a compatible partner after the age of thirty drops drastically from where it was in your mid twenties. When you couple that with not being able to go to the normal dating scenes because my brain literally makes my body shut down in that environment. The chances of me ever finding some one out side of my existing friendship circle is ridiculously low. I wouldn’t be surprised if the actual number was literally 1 in 3 billion or so. So that’s said, I feel better some what. I got it off my chest, moving on.

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a year of change

Life is constantly change. Some of it good, some of it not. This year was full of change. People who had been in the Brigade are no longer involved with the hobby. The brigade went from between 9 and 12 riders on a regular basis down to between 4 and 6. The faces of people I’d grown a custom to seeing in camp are no longer there. I know they’ll continue to see me grow as a rider, and reenactor threw my Facebook posts, and when they read these blogs but it’s some how diminished.

I have a world war one appropriate saddle now, and I have decided the next logical progression would be to put together a ww1 uniform and equipment. I would like to do what ever investigation I can about the saddle I own and build my impression around that to pay all due homage to “Lawrence” I know he was a soldier in the 117th Cavalry Company B that’s the unit number stamped into the saddle. I know Lawrence was a mans name and not the arsenal that the saddle was made because I’ve had several historians who specialize in the cavalry research tell me that it wasn’t a normal location for any stampings to be placed, nor was it common for there to be an arsenal stamp, and to their knowledge there was no arsenal in Lawrence that made saddles. I’ve had very little success in tracking down Lawrence. My suspicion is that he was an officer and that the saddle was personal purchase. There are parts of it that a normal 1904 McClellan tends to lack… For example where one can see that it used to have Wooly Sherpa lining on the bottom. Also the stamping of his name leads me to believe tat he had the means to buy his own saddle kit. I’m hoping what I can only guess to be inspector or maker marks on the saddle will be some means to tell me when exactly it was made or at least the general time period. Then I can search threw the 117 Co. B records and maybe find some one with the name Lawrence. I will keep you updated with this search in my upcoming blog series ‘the search for Lawrence’ I’ll be making this series so that people can follow along with my attempts to research some one. My methods maybe right or wrong but I will share with you the results of trying them and you maybe able to use them for what you are researching.

I have decided that it is stupid of me to have a wordpress and not to use it with some regularity. So look forward to weekly blogs from me.

That’s all for this week.
Choi

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The joys and tribulations of kilt wearing.

I, like many people have an ancestor who originates from Scotland. I fall into a subcategory of people with in that statistical grouping however. This subcategory is the one that become fascinated with the life that ancestor must have lived. They become curious about the culture, and wish to do something in their lives to honor that.

Now in the case of Scottish heritage there are a few avenues to this end that you can choose to pursue. You can take up the age old health eating habits of our proud ancestors, with dishes like stewed beats, roast eel, and haggis (I’ll give you a moment to let your stomachs settle.) You can learn to play the bagpipes, and in truth if done properly this endeavor is not nearly as hard, nor are the end results as ear splittingly upsetting as one might expect. The down side is that once you finish your lessons on a chanter, and it’s time to upgrade to learning on a bagged, or bellowed instrument you are easily looking at a minimum of five hundred dollars, or if you are genuinely serious about playing two to three thousand dollars for a quality set of pipes. The next option to pursue is the research of your family. Where were they from, what are the indigenous native plant life that they could make natural dye from, and what are their modern tartan colors. You also research if they ever officially made the switch over to the wee kilt (also known as the military kilt) Or if the clan still predominately wears the great kilt. After you have this information in hand, you go to getting your self a kilt.

A word of advice about kilts. When you hunt for one, though it costs more actually go to the trouble to save up the few hundred dollars and get your self a proper kilt tailored to you. On average it will be a $485.00 investment just for the kilt it’s self. If you wish to wear your kilt at a reenactment or ren-faire and you wish to do it right. If the event that you are attending is a pre 1820 event. Go to a fabric store, or shop on line, find your self a generic plaid that you like of largely earthen tones (dark blues, soft to dark greens, browns, yellows, reds, and so on) and get your self 4 to 8 yards of the stuff. Pleat it, there are scores of how to videos on this subject; and wear it as a great kilt. The reason I mention this is because something a lot of people often acknowledge, but actively take no steps to be accurate to is that the charter of tartans did not exist until the early 1800’s (1814 or 1815) and really clans did not start adhering to the colors at large until the early to mid 1820s. So if you’re going to use the kilt for reenacting, just get your self some material and make your self one.

Then you need to get the proper socks or kilt hose. These can be knit but if you choose to do this please keep in mind that they are traditionally knit from the top down, and it will take a considerable amount of time and effort. While it will save you money do not take knitting a pair of kilt hose lightly. If you choose to embark on such a task I cannot highly enough recommend the book Designs for knitting kilt hose & knickerbocker stockings Collected by Veronica Gainford. The book, which is published by Schoolhouse press has proven invaluable to me in the past. It has insightful hints, and offers options for relatively simplistic stocking patterns. You’ll also want to match your hose to the intended use. The kilt hose you’ll wear to play golf would be different then the hose you would wear to a formal dinner or ball.

Next you have your guile brogues. These shoes range in design from very similar to a simple moccasin if you’re going for the traditional look, to very similar to a wing tip shoe with ridiculously long, tassel ended laces. In fact I have personally used normal wing tipped dress shoes with the guile brogue laces and no one was any the wiser.

You’ll need to get your self a the Sgian-dubh. If you are worried about traipsing about with a real knife stuck in your sock, there are faux Sgian-dubh options out there, which are simply speaking a solid resin sheath, with the handle eternally attached to them. The next item for dress apparel is your dirk. I know this may not sound like a very dressy thing to boast a large knife on your hip but in reality a dirk is more then just a large knife sitting for all the world to see. If done properly it is easily the second most expensive thing in your kit. The dirk is a status symbol as much as it is a very functional and real means of self defense.

Then you’re shirt. Now for the sake of comfort I will caution the reader that you’re Guile shirt should be made out of light weight cotton, muslin, or linen if you intend to wear it in the summer. Avoid dark colors and get used to the baggy nature of the sleeves. They serve the purpose of letting more cool air surround your arms. If you are going to a winter formal you may wish to consider a wool shirt.

Next you have your waistcoat (or vest if you’re unfamiliar with this term.) The waistcoat is another one of those ‘wear it for what you’re doing’ items. You can get away with a simple tweed waistcoat if you’re going out for an informal lunch or golfing excursion with your friends. A clerical style waistcoat if you’re going to classes, work, or wish for a some what ‘military’ look. A ‘Prince Charlie’ waistcoat is the preferred method of insanity when going to formal events, complete with the accompanying jacket.

If the event calls for formal wear you’ll want to wear a bowtie as well as a fly plaid. If you wear a great kilt your fly plaid is built in as a naturally occurring part of putting it on.

You’ll want to get your self a Sporran, if not a few to accompany the various types of things you’ll be doing. A simple informal one is useful for day to day use. A slightly more extensive one with more storage space and perhaps a small side loop and tougher leather, may be desirable for hunting excursions. The fanciest one you can find will be a nice touch for formal events.

Finally you’ll want to get your self a kilt pin. For day to day use this can be something so simplistic as what equates to the mother of all safety pins. If you’re going to a formal ball you’ll want something that is more fanciful for the sake of it looking nice. You’ll also desire a plain, and a dress broach which is used for securing your fly plaid at the shoulder. Though for day to day use if you wish to do so with a great kilt, the fly plaid can be secured with a leather tie, or scrap material.

To complete the ensemble you’ll wish to look at getting a Balmoral or a Glengarry.

There you have them, the parts you’re going to need for your kilt. I find it quite enjoyable to wear my great kilt, now that I have a proper one which is actual sport weight wool. There are some things how ever that are not fun about wearing a kilt. I have learned to get a tough skin in regards to them. People will forget, or actively choose to ignore the fact that you are wearing your kilt in honor of your ancestors. You might get made fun of, or jeered. It is simply a fact of life. I have personally come to accept, and learned to cope with by simply ignoring them. If you deny them the ‘fun’ of a charged reaction, then they are faced with being made to look like an ignorant jerk, who lacks any cultural grace.

It may sound sacrilegious to some of you but I will part with this one piece of very important advice, which was passed onto me from very dear friends who wear their kilts every Sunday over in Scotland. If you are not in the military, and more importantly the kilt is not part of your military uniform, then for the love of all things decent and holy. Wear underpants with your kilt. The weight of the kilt itself, and the kilt pin usually keep things from getting revealed, but occasionally as one famous picture proves a gust of wind will just prove too much.

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The does and don’ts of my specific case of Asperger’s

So as a lot of you know I have Asperger’s Syndrome disorder. People who have this knowledge have in the past made some minor snafu’s that while completely understandable, and they made them with the very best intentions in heart. They ad a devastating and traumatizing effect on my mind in that moment. There are some that I would not trade in even a moment’s worth because it was so touching. I do how ever humbly offer up this post in hopes that future transgressions of this nature will not occur unintentionally in the future.

  1. Don’t: bring special notice to me as a person. If I have done something exceptional in one way or another. Do: If you wish to reward me for it, please find an opportune moment to pull me quietly to the side, offer up what ever special commendation or scorn I’ve earned my self and then if it’s something you know others will wish to congratulate me on quietly suggest to them that they do so one at a time a little spread out over the course of a day. Reasons: I appreciate it when people that I care about want to bring me up in front of my gathered loved ones and reward me with some special object for hard work. (case and point my red tie) But I don’t deal well with being the center of attention. When surprised with being so it can easily drive me into a panic attack. For those who have never had one let me put it in terms that you might understand if you’ve had a heart attack. It’s nearly identical, at least from my prospective. My arm hurts, my every thing suddenly feels tired. I can hear my heart pounding in my ears, I can feel it thumping like it wants to escape my chest. Every sensation becomes instantly a thousand times more pronounced then it normally would be. I can’t breath it and every thing turns a shade of green. It’s just not fun.
  2. Don’t!: call me a !@#$ing   ‘Aspie’ or an ‘Asperkid’ Do: call me John, and regard me to other’s who inquire as an Adult with Asperger’s syndrome. Reasons: While there are those with in the Asperger’s community that find the terms ‘Aspie’ and ‘Asperkid’ to be perfectly acceptable ‘nicknames’ I find them offensive in the same way a black person might find being regarded to as a ‘darkie’ or a white person might take to being called a ‘whitey.’
  3. Don’t: Justify things with ‘you should be fine with it because other people with Asperger’s are.’ Do: Understand that I am my own person and the so called ‘community’ and what they may think is acceptable and what ‘should’ be acceptable to me as a person be damned. I have my own thoughts, I have my  own opinions, and I as my own person have things that piss me off.
  4. Don’t: While it technically falls under the rule above on a small level. Do not correct me when I involuntarily correct the pronunciation you use to refer to my disorder. Do: Allow me just a brief moment to correct you on how you’ve probably been pronouncing Asperger’s all this time that you’ve been reading. It is named for the Austrian national that discovered the illness back in the mid twenties. Thusly when people ‘Americanize’ it in front of me and pronounce it ‘ass-burger’ I am unable to restrain my self from offering up ‘actually it’s pronounced ‘au-sper-gier.’ Reasons: This goes with out saying but the compulsion to correct it when people around me mispronounce it is just that. an impulse. Something that I have no ability to control. Even more infuriating is when people respond with. “Well I know it’s the Americanized method of saying the name but that’s just how we say it over here.” But since it’s derived from some one’s proper name just understand you’re doing it wrong and I WILL correct you.
  5. Don’t: Tell me I can’t do something. I’ve heard it a million times over. I want to do something, I make my intentions known, and people who I’m sure mean well say ‘you can’t handle that type of dog,’ or “you can’t handle that type of horse” or “You don’t have what it takes to do that thing you’re fixing to do.” Do: If you are of the opinion that I am in some way ill prepared for an intended course of action, offer me helpful suggestions that will maximize my likelihood of success, and then let me try regardless of if you think I can or can’t. Yes there is a good chance I might fail but you don’t really NEED to tell me that. Reasons: My Asperger’s syndrome functions very much in the same way as an anxiety disorder. That means all those things that you are saying are already a product of my own brain. It is these things, these key fraises in my mind already present that lead to me being a shut in most of the time, and when I tell you that I’m planning something it’s because I respect you as one of the people I know that deal with that sort of thing. I need any helpful insight you can provide with out the out and out ‘you can’t bull shit’ Because the finalization in your words are going to convince me once and for all that I can’t, which will make me back off entirely from it and will rob me of a potentially life enhancing experience.

That’s it, those are my five simple rules of dealing with me as a person who struggles with his Asperger’s. Hope they help you out in dealing with me in the future.

 

Choi!

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