Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Ordinary Girl (Jewish Blood, Russian Soul, British Heart... living all of it every day, with Asperger's...)

My name is Roz, I'm 34 and was recently diagnosed with Asperger's (Finally!)

And all this time I thought I was going loopy! I was hoping that it was just a difficult childhood phaze that would pass when I grow up. But my 20th, then 30th birthday came and I still didn't grow up at all. Now I know, why. I'm an Aspie! And quite frankly, I like it!

I don't care if people think I'm weird or not like them - that's 'cause I'm not! None of us really are. We are us and that's who we're meant to be: individuals, unique and unrepeatable. "Normal" or not.

What is normal, anyway? Someone who lies and bullshits and cons another person to get ahead in life at any cost? Surely, that's not what a human being should aspire to. Surely, that's not what an Aspie would do. Quite frankly, I'm very happy with the fact that I'm bent on justice, can't stand lies (but can't always tell if someone is lying to me, unfortunately) and obsessed with cleaning anf tyding up. What's wrong with working in an ordered environment?

Even if I wasn't dignosed with Asperger's or didn't "have it", I'd have no chance at all of being perceived as "normal", anyway: a (bottle) Blond Jewish girl with a Russian accent living in England. Go figure! But knowing what I know now explains why I was bullied so much for most of my life. And why I wanted so badly to belong but couldn't.

Oh well, their loss ...

On the good side though, because I wasn't allowed into any girl gangs, I never learnt how to smoke or take drugs. I would've probably wanted to, just to be like "the other girls" in whatever group that was cool at the time in our school then later college. But I just didn't know how to start and where to begin with smoke and drugs and no one bothered to show me.

Phew! Saved myself thousands of pounds there on a drug habit that never took off! There is no cloud indeed without a silver lining.

What else did I miss out on that turned out to be a blessing? Let me see... Well, being a "weird" chick, I obviously missed out on an early dating and a teenage pregnancy altogether. I wanted a "boy-friend" so badly, but just couldn't fingure out the whole flirting caboodle. And not getting the other people's jokes didn't make me an instant hit either. Funnily enough, no one really got our jokes. The only friend I had, Katya, was like myself totally obsessed with the Alice in the wonderland and their world of humour wich was rather fine for the average Russian Joe (so fine - nobody could even see it). Oh well... there's always the Queen, I hoped. She should be able to get Lewis Carrol's style jokes, surely! Save it for the best!

What esle? I've also missed out on staying on at college and finishing my education to start my mediocre job somewhere deep in Russia, like "normal people". But I went to England insted, totally unprepared, naive and of course penniless, fueled with and saved by the raw determination to survive in a country I was in love with from the age of 6. Talking about obsessions! England was my first love and the ONLY topic of conversation I was interested in for as long as I can remember.

I still kinda like it, sort of. Only now I have an objective point of view as well, like the actual 15 years of real life experience in the UK (not entirely concentrated on the subjects of Royal family and the Queen).

Ok, seriously, it was worth it. And despite all the trouble I've had and the violence directed towards me, the verbal and physical abuse e.t.c... I've survived, I'm still here. And what good about being an Aspie, is that I forget big chunks of stuff my brain doesn't need, anyway, making room for numbers, useful facts and data relevant to the subject of interest I have at the time (which usually preoccupies me for years until it's "ready" as a concept or a new "finished product"). Much better than keeping all the upsetting stuff turning round and round in my head.

I actually believe that the so-called "explosion" in the cases of Asperger's syndrome among the general population is linked to the different need the societies now have: the infornation versus the muscle power, the high specialisation in technical areas versus the farm hand. When the natural environment changes - the species change. Well, that's my excuse, anyway, because I'd be quite rubbish on the farm (I'd be tripping all over the place, stubbing my big toe on the pitch-fork and walking into the cow's a.. you get the picture...)

But at least I'd be sure to wash my hands plenty of times afterwards. Fifty times should do it to get the smell out, I reckon, eh? All in the day's work...

Oh, did I mention, that I was a compulsive-obsessive, too?