|December 29, 2012 South Bank, Brisbane|
What I did always envision was myself in a wheelchair, overcoming some handicap with admirable pluck and determination, somewhere in middle age.
I'd always imagined this to be a physical handicap I would overcome through perserverence and profound inner personal strength.
It occurs to me now that I have been fighting a battle with a handicap since I was thirteen, that I have done so with admirable determination and pluck, that I have shown great perserverance and inner personal strength.
The handicap wasn't the Asperger's. The handicap was my unawareness of it.
|On the Big Wheel in South Bank|
Thirteen was the first time I recall standing in my grandmother's bathroom running something sharp across my skin just to feel something.
I don't want to make a big deal out of that. I wasn't trying to kill myself or even inflict self-harm. I was just dead inside, I was numb, and I wanted to feel something, make something hurt a bit just to feel real pain. I didn't understand what was wrong with me but it sucked.
Of course I was diagnosed with depression in my late teens and early twenties. Wasn't everybody?
Being diagnosed as depressed made me feel like a personal failure, like there was something wrong with me, a personal flaw I should be able to overcome.
Being diagnosed as Asperger's feels like a personal triumph, like there isn't something wrong with me after all, a personal strength that makes me unique.
I've worked so hard my entire life, way more than most people would bother.
But I've accomplished more than most too.
Now that I know that I have Asperger's - and okay, I don't officially, but I am fairly sure! - I don't feel like I have a handicap anymore.
I had always had this feeling there was something wrong with me, something inadequate.
Except for when I've felt superior.
Now I don't feel either.
But I do feel different. I do feel extraordinary.
|Performing at South Bank. We CAN do magic!|
What I feel is like taking that wheelchair and racing it down the biggest hill I can find!!
Is that normal?
Doesn't matter. I am not normal. I am not like everyone else.
I am free.