Imma jump on this 2018 Year in Review bandwagon right quick because this year, for me, has been pretty eventful so I am moved to write about it.
I don’t normally write stuff about this since I think of time more contextually rather than numerically but here we go.
Two large life-changing events happened for me:
- I bought my first house
- I received an affirmative autism assessment
I don’t really see the house purchase as such a huge deal in like a societal achievement or whatever. I guess partly why it’s a big deal is because it’s taken up a lot of money and a lot of time to get it all sorted, fixed up, etc.
It is also in another country, which I guess makes things slightly more complicated but not really because if I ever decide to go home I’ll just sell it.
The main reason it’s a big deal is that I never thought I would be in this position. I always had this vision of myself that I would be in a quirky apartment with 2 cats living the single life forever. But I found someone super special just before I was going to go home and many things aligned that allowed us to be together.
So it’s been a large and expensive undertaking but the mental benefits have been surprisingly profound to me. I finally feel like I have a home again after moving away (drastically) to start uni. It’s been a long, hard road with many ups and downs, deeply regrettable encounters with a couple of people (though they lead me to where I am now so can’t really regret it as roses grew out of mud for me but still very bad memories) and wonderful learnings from others. I doubt I will ever go into the details on this blog but trust me when I say that the struggle was real and the hustle has paid off.
This time last year I had booked my autism assessment and was compiling information from my mother and those closest to me for anything that I do or did that may be related to autism. I went private for my diagnosis since the NHS waiting list is incredibly long and I needed the answer sooner rather than later.
It cost a lot of money but it was worth it.
It was a pretty straight-forward assessment but grueling and long, and I think the two women who conducted my assessment knew long before we were finished that I was/am autistic.
It has been a phenomenal revelation and has filled in every missing piece for me.
I am 35 years old and have been on a quest to understand why I have felt like such an outsider and/or Frankenstein/Edward Scissorhands my entire life. I was in and out of different therapies, taken on and off different medications, etc., from about age 10 onward and struggled very badly with depression, anxiety and other negative feelings because no one could really tell me the why or because of my behavior. Now I have an answer that, had I been a kid right now, I probably would’ve received but no one was really looking out for autism when I was growing up much less diagnosing it for young girls or women.
Anyway, I started this blog to give myself a space to anonymously write my feelings about my assessment and whatever else is on my mind with the hope that maybe my words will help make one person out there on the interwebs feel less alone and feel supported in their own personal neurodiverse or neurotypical journey.
Because, you know, at the end of every keyboard is a flesh-and-blood human being who needs love and support just like everybody else whether they’re autistic or not.
I feel good about my assessment now. Some days, I still don’t know where autism starts and ends in my brain for me but I don’t really care. I am who I am. No one really fully understands autism and I have my own ideas around it but it just doesn’t matter. We are all having this human experience together despite our differences and I am happy/proud of who I am.
Plus, I always wanted to be part of the X-Men so this is the closest I’ll get. 😀
I always thought I would be dead by the time I reached 30. Once I graduated uni forever with my BA and MA (which was around the age of 31 or so), I thought to myself that anything that happens after that would be a bonus.
Four or five years later I am sitting here with full revelation of who I am, a home to call my own, a partner in crime and a good job with kind, friendly people.
And it’s those little things that matter the most to me. Yes, the political and environmental state of the world is profoundly depressing on a level that I do not wish to discuss on my blog.
I don’t know how I managed to turn my life around like this but I have and I am so grateful.
My new goal in life…
…a different kind of hustle, if you will,
is to be kind to people because, as I’ve said in other posts, we are all on a journey and all have baggage. We could all do with a little more kindness in our lives and I hope I can bring that while I’m still here.