Thursday, December 12, 2013

Delving into My Aspieness

I just found this blog written by an autism specialist named Tania Marshall. In this particular post she lists the First Signs of Asperger Syndrome in Young Girls Pre-school. I was so tempted to reproduce her list and make my comments here. However, that is illegal (called plagiarism) and that is also the lazy way.

I did recognize a LOT of myself in her list but not in every item. People who knew me when I was that age may look at this same list and say, "Oh, yeah, she did that for sure!" to something that I simply don't remember doing. I mean, how many of us really remember our preschool years??

I will comment on some of the things on her list which I most strongly identify with:

  • Sensory Sensitivities: I've always had issues with this. I remember when I was in elementary school I had to have MY special pillow and pillow case. The pillow case was extra soft (made from a gunny sack, if there is anyone out there who remembers what those were!) I would NOT accept any other. I still have have to have MY pillow. This is just one small example out of many sensory issues I have.
  • Speech: My mother had me in speech therapy when I was in elementary school. I used to insist on my own "special" pronunciation of words like "Belbow" for elbow.
  • Hyperlexia: When I was learning to read in 1st grade, I was SO excited about it that I came home every day and taught my little sister (13 months younger than me) what I'd learned that day. She was reading on a 2nd grade level by the time she hit Kindergarden and I had been her teacher!
  • Play: In the lower elementary years, I remember trying to play with the girls my age and being frustrated because they didn't want to play the way I wanted to. So I played with the boys instead and had a grand time pretending rocks were cars on that old rock retaining wall.
  • Appearance and clothing: Those who attended school with me from 1st through 12th can attest to the fact that I had my very own sense of style. Maybe it's the fact that I'd attended school with these same kids for so many years that I didn't get teased even more about that than I did.
  • Imagination: I was an AVID reader as a girl. I often read and enjoyed books many grade levels over my own.
  • Writing: I was intensely interested in writing and wrote many of my own stories. I'm sure I would have written much more had I had the luxury of using a computer instead of my spiral notebooks and pencil.
  • Determination: Oh, my gosh!! Do I fit this one to a tee!! I am still one of the most stubborn and competitive people you will meet.
  • Attention Issues: I spent the majority of my childhood hanging out in my own world. All the way up into my college years, I had a rich fantasy life in my mind and preferred to spend time there rather than in the real world.
  • Hyperempathy: I still struggle with this one. I can get choked up over the craziest things.
Add to these things the general social awkwardness that always accompanies the aspie and it is a wonder to me that I was never diagnosed. I have absolutely no doubt that I am an aspie and don't feel the need as an adult to be diagnosed. I would sure love to get feedback from people who knew me as a kid on the list I mentioned in the beginning of this post.

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