Events from early in high school; no particular order.
Growing up, I always found the last week of summer to be a bittersweet experience. I relished the freedom, yet felt terrified about the new school year ahead. I’d start to build up an overwhelming amount of anxiety that would travel with me into the classroom.
“Sketching Roots” is an ongoing series featuring family memories and all of the fun awkwardness that that implies.
I grew up in a place where girls are encouraged to be “girly” at an early age, and boys are encouraged to be “manly”.
I was too shy and introverted and clumsy-headed to really play the role. Early on in life, I was pretty scared of people…I couldn’t make sense of them; I just saw people as these vague, menacing specters. As a result, I needed a lot of down time. I just wanted to be alone, reading, hiding away.
In 2005, at the age of 30, I began therapy and received a diagnosis of Asperger’s Syndrome (now Autism Spectrum Disorder). It caught me off guard, because I had gone in specifically to receive help with depression and social anxiety. A spectrum diagnosis was not on my radar, and it took me over a year to fully come to terms with the reality of it.
She has a travel-for-work kind of job, so I tag along sometimes.
During college, I had an easier time making friends with students from other countries than with my own US classmates. We seemed to share a confusion with the surrounding social world, although for presumably different reasons.
(Part 1 of 2)
This is a collection of stories about a friend I made during college. I can count on one hand the number of friends I’ve made in my life- it has never been an easy thing- so experiences like this stand out in my mind.
I don’t know. I suppose there is a theme here. Possibly.
I’ve never been able to remember what I look like. I can look in a mirror and think, Oh yeah, that’s me. For a split second, it’s always kind of a shock to see my reflection, but then I understand, it’s just me.
Being at a social event…it never feels like you’ve simply entered a space with other people. It feels more like waking up in another person’s dream…like being thrown there. You find yourself in an unfamiliar space. The context and reality are inscrutable, cryptic. Nothing works the way it’s supposed to. At a basic level, you don’t know how to be.