Yesterday afternoon I called a domain company. I had recently acquired another domain. I'm not quite certain how it's going to be used yet.
The domain is www.adultswithautism.net
But I don't have a site for it yet or anything. It was just open, and for $8, I grabbed it.
For you can get online and find all kinds of info about children with autism, but not much for adults. In fact I find more adult info from the UK than I do in the states, which I find a bit odd.
Anyway, I had some technical questions, so I called up the domain company. A young woman answered, and was trying to help me. In the midst of helping me, she told me to click something in the right-hand corner.
I told her it wasn't there. She kept repeating it. Finally I realized she meant the right corner of a box. Not the FAR right corner. I didn't want her to think I was daft, so I said, "Oh, I have Aspergers. I took you literally."
I'm not quite sure how the conversation then went in another direction. But she started asking me questions, asking if it was okay. I told her yes, ask away.
Seems her young child has a dissociative disorder like I do, from an early trauma. She told me the child was experiencing some other problems that sounded a bit familiar. I asked her if anyone had mentioned possibly getting her child tested for autism.
She said she'd thought of that, but just didn't have enough information. Well, if I'm anything, once I start looking into something, I'm a fount of information.
Then the conversation veered to the young woman. Seems she had a diagnosis that I carried around for thirty years. I started asking her questions, and I began to see that she was much like me. And possibly, possibly, had been misdiagnosed as well.
Just thirty years old, trying to make a living for two young children, I really felt for her. She'd been through a lot. I wanted so much to help her.
So I sent her some information, and she's going to follow up on it for both herself and her daughter.
She kept saying how glad she was that I'd called and she'd been the one to answer.
We said we'd keep in touch. I don't even know where she lives, and it doesn't matter. If she needs help and I can help her, I will.
And if I hadn't said I had Aspergers because I didn't want her to think I was odd (well, isn't that a non-sequitur?), then we'd never have engaged in the long conversation we had.
Maybe that new domain is going to come in handy!
I think, in this world, we get so caught up sometimes in our own daily minutaie, that we often don't pause and stop to help others.
Now I would never have done that in person, for that is not me at all. But I've decided, you do what you can, from whatever level of education or fount of knowledge you might have acquired.
For we all have a talent. It may not yet be readily apparent. But it's there. Just waiting to be tapped into.
I'd been feeling kind of down all week. I've been calling around for possible places to rent that might be more affordable, and so many of the ones on the list said only one pet.
My daughter has taken it upon herself to take the reins and get with some organizations, put their heads together, and try to find some outlets for me that I'm struggling with.
I'm really proud of her. She comes across as so professional and at ease, while I don't.
When I told her what I'd learned, she said she'd already discussed that with someone. And I might be able to classify one of the dogs as a therapy dog. Thus not having to worry about all that. Which was weighing, of course, heavily on me.
I don't know what's in the near future. But we're looking at various possibilities, should I need to move.
Just this morning she took me for a tour she'd arranged at a place that works with the mentally ill. They often help with finding affordable housing, employment, etc.
It's called a clubhouse, and the staff and members work together. The staff is on the same level as the members and they have meetings together to discuss issues and such.
They're looking at ways they might be able to help me. It's called Crossroads. I'm not sure how she found it, for it was never on my radar.
They help make sure members have nutritious food. Hence the garden they showed us that everyone takes care of.
I wasn't very comfortable, but I let my daughter do all the talking and I kind of kept in the background.
Although they don't work with adults with autism, they work with those that also have Axis 1 mental disorders, which is often part and parcel of autism. One often comes with the other. With the anxiety autism brings, who wouldn't have other problems?
I guess I wrote all this to say: When I was a little girl, there was such shame over family members "being different." They were hidden away like they had a contagious disease.
And though that was just how it was done in those days, that doesn't make up for the very evident fact that it is wrong to treat people like that.
How are we going to help one another if we are close-minded and not willing to open up to one another from time to time?
I just think the world is a much better place if we take it upon ourselves to help one another, don't you?
We are, each one of us, flowers in the garden of life. But if we are deprived of the food and water and nutrients essential to grow, we will wilt and eventually fade away.
We need to occasionally be lifted up. Someone helping us. Us helping them.
So that the garden flourishes. And the flowers stand strong in the sun and wind. And nature keeps rolling along with the seasons, as it's meant to.