Zoom Autism Magazine Issue 1 Fall 2014 - Page 23

every time there is a transition, even if you’re not consciously aware of it. You don’t know what is coming next, and you have to get your battle on. Even if it’s something you’ve done a million times, it’s not likely to be something without danger because, let’s face it, almost everything we do out in the world has a barrage of sensory information and feels like overload even if it’s something we like—and it’s usually not. Our minds are very good at focusing on the small details and terrible at the big picture. So, focusing from one detailed activity to another means a lot of change in focus and a lot of anxiety. When you FINALLY get your mind focused on doing something, having to stop and go through all that again to do another activity can feel like murder, so no wonder we like to hyper focus on one activity for a long period of time. Other people seem to have this built-in understanding of so much. A built-in understanding, for example, of how their actions, thoughts, feelings will impact others. A built-in understanding of things I can’t quite grasp yet but was always able to articulate were missing. How can I tell you what’s missing when I don’t know what it is? Almost everything we do out in the world has a barrage of sensory information and feels like overload. Kate Goldfield is a freelance writer living in Portland, Maine. Her writing has appeared in the Baltimore Sun, the Autism Asperger Digest, and the Hartford Courant. For more on her writing, visit her blog, Aspie from Maine. I know I need to try to give myself the enormous credit I probably deserve for somehow coming up with this instead of chastising myself for my way of thinking, doing, coping and being as different from others. My brain is autistic. It’s not going to work the same way as other brains no matter how much I want it to. I will learn that eventually. Do you have an informative story about what it is like to be YOU, an autistic person, that you would like to share? Send your 800 word or less first-person essay to zoomautism@gmail.com with “Zoom-IN” in the subject line for consideration. Zoom Autism Through Many Lenses 23