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things fall apart
posted at 06:38 am on 01-31-2007
There is a desert, out there. A place where the self and everything you have known or believed comes to an end. The desert is also a part of you, but huge and alien, all unknown, wholly unexplored. No human presence has come to that place.
Letting go of all the things that once were a part of us means abandoning even the ideas of self and the very foundations of the world. It becomes clear that the things once presumed to be the anchors that held truth to the ground are, in fact, as tenuous and fleeting as a breath exhaled into the wind.
Nothing is. Nothing is. Only this brief and passing moment, and the vast enormous desert of the unknown. The self is only an idea. What is true? What is real?
What is it we can hold on to?
an interesting exercise
posted at 05:38 am on 01-26-2007
Watching these forums has been an interesting opportunity to observe firsthand that, even in a community where many of the people (ostensibly anyway lack the capacity in one way or another for behaviors generally associated with more normalized or mainstream-type attitudes, nonetheless most of the old rules still apply.
In other words, people react to stuff in much the same way as you would expect to see pretty much anywhere on the internet.
posted at 04:07 am on 01-19-2007
I've been turning this over and over in my head--this possibility which is starting to look more and more likely that I all the things which have plagued me in my life, and caused me untold difficulties, and which I have gone out of my way to compensate for and to hide, may actually be connected into a single, identifiable reality. (I checked a quiz which gave a very high rating and implies I may be an Aspie, but of course online quizzes are far from what I call conclusive.)
Perhaps this thought/worry/obsession will last another week and then die off. But it offers an entirely new perspective, and has caused certain memories of certain problems long since "solved" (in the sense of having been identified, tagged, and adaptive behaviors created for) and thus forgotten. Like the problem making eye-contact. I'd forgotten how much of a problem this was for me, for years and years as a child. I'd forgotten that one of the therapists I saw briefly for about 4 months only a few years ago commented on the fact that I hardly made eye-contact within the 50 minute session. It just hadn't seemed important at the time.
But I've worked so hard for years learning to adapt to all the rhythms of social activity that I like to think I do it better than those I've always thought of as "Norms"--not maybe a complimentary way of calling a person, but it's a natural categorizing phrase and it tends to pop up even when I don't mean for it too. I mean that I spend my time in social situations so highly-tuned to what's going on around me, watching for all those subtle cues that let me monitor my own behavior in the eyes of others--watching for precious feedback--that I'm probably more aware of how others respond to me than most people who take it for granted that the world is how they imagine it.
But it's hard work. It's just that I'd forgotten I had a self that predated that hyper-aware state, which is more real and more solid, and has fewer needs than the world had led me to imagine. So in adopting this view of self that actually came from outside of me, I let go of who I was. Admittedly, the reason for this was due to the amount of emotional damage I took from people due to my total inability to behave in normal ways...I mean, being totally unable to grasp many of the finer points of human interaction kind of bites.
So now what is the best option? I guess to let it run its course--but I'm afraid in doing so my old self will reassert, which wouldn't be a bad thing except that I've got another 6 months and I have to be able to finish my run here in Japan. If I let go, or start to lose my awareness of those mechanisms that have allowed me to function, it would mean among other things a complete personality shift, 180 degrees, which would make it pretty difficult to do my job. Also it would probably weird out the people around me.
But I wasn't happy being that person, either, because I've been walking around thinking there was something wrong with me, and it turns out that that feeling is more my source of discontent than the actual fact of my being isolated and alone.
I'll let this obsession run it's course. Perhaps in time it will run aground. Then I'll get out an walk...and see about getting some kind of official diagnosis. My mistake in the past has been allowing my "surface self" to do the talking, and that is why I come across as a bright, intelligent, somewhat outgoing and cheerful individual, when in fact I am quiet, withdrawn, energetic yet spastic, and given to socially unacceptable modes of speech and behavior.
*sigh* (In point of fact, being cheerful and intelligent and energetic is essential--no one will ever be around to take care of me, so if I want to eat, I have to work. Thus, a surface self to take care of things like job interviews is sort of vital to survival.)
posted at 05:20 am on 01-18-2007
I mean yes, I am still horrified. The concept remains horrifying. I wish I had some other thing to worry about, but even my job can't offer that degree of anxiety anymore. Dammit.
It's horrifying to think that there might be some truth to that sneaking, sinking suspicion--that there might truly be something way off about me after all, that it wasn't all just a horrible mistake on my part, that it wasn't merely a failure to act but a failure of the system to function.
But I'll never know. Maybe this thing will run its course, like a fever, and the thoughts and feelings and worries over a subject I cannot control and a possibility I cannot imagine will fade like ashes from a fire, blown on the wind.
The deep places of the Earth. Oh god.
posted at 02:27 am on 01-17-2007
So now that I've begun looking into this, I've also begun to be horrified by the actual idea itself. See, I'm not sure why my brain latched onto the idea that, "Hey" Maybe the source of all our troubles and worries is an autism-spectrum disorder!!1" Except that like many people the idea of having a name to pin on your basic weirdnesses is an appealing idea.
Thing is, it's unlikely for me to get any sort of diagnosis for any disorder, personality or otherwise. When I started my short-lived term in "therapy" (if you can call it that--consider this an honorary term rather than a descriptive one) some years ago, the doctor on staff didn'T believe there was anything odd about me, or think I needed antidepressants--*even though my father had recently died after a protracted and horrible illness.* This is because I really am very good at concealing, well, everything, and have thoroughly and completely mastered the whole interacting-with-people-in-a-bright-cheerful-and-energetic-way thing. *sigh*
So yeah. If I went to a doctor today, right now, he'd say there's nothing wrong with me (despite the fact that I am and have been suffering depression/dysthymia for some time and am currently dealing with other family-related issues which lead me to have to spend a ridiculous amount of time doing brain-maintenance) and thus I have no way to ever get a diagnosis of anything, unless I want to sit and argue with some guy who will naturally take offense, as all doctors do, at a patient daring to suggest that they might know enough about the inner workings of their brain to think they might possibly maybe perhaps could suggest a quality to the shape of said brain/mind.
And I haven't been to an actual doctor in ages, anyway.
But yes. The reason I'm horrified is that it might actually be true--but I have no way of knowing for sure. At the moment I'm coming down on the side of 'probably not' and in all likelihood I'll remain there--but I'd disagree with any doctor who just flat-out told me, "No" if for no other reason than I know he's not getting the whole story, and the "me" that he sees is not the "me" that I live with.
This calls for more research.