I used to be special. I used to be an interesting neurotypical and now I’m an everyday autistic.
I’m not original after all.
All those actions. All those ways of being that marked me as an oddity. All those things that both attracted and repelled people in equal measure. All those idiosyncrasies, all my inspiration, my individuality. All rooted in something so mundane as a social processing disorder.
I see the world differently. I prioritise different things. I revel in finding new viewpoints for old views. And it turns out that’s just another normal thing for us autistics.
I’ve spoken of the incredible feeling of finding your people. Of being a part of something when you thought you were alone. And that is a powerful and wonderful thing.
But damnit, I used to be cool!
I used to be the life and soul with my hilarious rants about everything and anything.
Now I’m a normal Aspie-ranter. Just another one in a long line of eloquent and brilliant people who passionately engage with their subject matter.
But it’s nice to have the crazy bits explained. It’s nice to look back at all the moments when I knew I wasn’t reacting normally to everyday things, and to feel justified. It’s nice to know that so many of my techniques for avoiding meltdowns and shutdowns, are actually shared experience. They’re not so lonely anymore. They’re normal too. Even the destructive ones.
And it’s nice to know that I worked out my own way to minimise the destructive behaviours. It’s nice to know that I am that capable. That I moulded new actions from old ones, to build this person that I am. And that I’m not alone there either.
It’s sad to know that bad times could have been avoided or minimised. It’s sad to know I’m not alone there either. Not that I could have avoided certain life events, but that I could have accepted my reactions instead of minimising them and dealing with the consequences of that later. That I could have spotted the bad ‘uns more easily. That I could have learned that if actions don’t match words, it’s the words that are the lie.
So it’s not that I’m a brilliant neurotypical. My brain is designed to be like this. I used to be the creative one in the village, then I walked into this city of fellow creators, and suddenly I’m distinctly mediocre.
How very disappointing.
Just in case it needs saying for those of us who like things to be literal: I am in no way disappointed! I’m being satirical rather than hysterical. Don’t go worrying about me.