Just like you

 

I haven’t written much about being on the Autism Spectrum.  I’ve delegated that “discovered” part of me to the background, contained here and there in hints and asides and tiny blurbs on social media. Few people in my daily life actually know much about me at all.  I let very few into my world.

One could say that I have “passed” as an N.T. or Neurotypical; those who are deemed “normal” by society. I have been able to pass under the radar probably due to my generation and that I am female. There are many of us out there. We without an official diagnosis.  We that have practiced being just like we thought everyone expected us to be.

It’s not easy and I have fallen short. I have wondered why I have tried so hard to fit in. It is lonely enough being one’s unique and misunderstood self but another degree of lonely trying to be someone you are not.

I have been blogging for a few years and I have preached about loving yourself and being yourself and all the beautiful magic in that. I have dispensed this sugary drink without sipping it myself. I am guilty of being something I hate, which is a hypocrite.

I have hidden to the world, even my own Mother that I am on the Autism Spectrum.

I keep my tiny victories to myself; hoarding them to savor for rainy days.  I assume the world at large will not understand me. I hold a demeanor of reserve, a protective coating I have strengthened and shined it and relied upon it most of my life. It keeps the world out. It keeps me safe but in that safety, I have lost so much.

And time goes by and so I really haven’t done all these incredible things with my life. It seems that the basics have been difficult, if not almost impossible enough.

I am starting to see that I may not have all the answers and that I may need help and that often the best way to help oneself is to help others.

Maybe there truly can be a reason why I am the way I am. For the most part it is a gift; this way I experience life, from the smallest of things I experience pure joy and alternatively I can feel a deep sorrow. I hear a delicate song in the wind but the loud noises of the world make me feel pain.

I sometimes feel like a butterfly fluttering about a beautiful field of flowers, subject to the elements that tatters my wings, but yet I keep flying. In that tiny victory I have found I am stronger and more resilient than I thought I could be. Perhaps I am here with my gift for words to tell other butterflies that you too are stronger than you think you are, and yes you can because I am doing it now. Watch me fly and watch us fly together.

I am taking advantage of some rare free time that has blown my way by the mysterious winds of fate. I have been finding caches of goodness scattered here and there. It seems the bank of karma has seen it fit to shower a little sunshine on me.
I am resting and revitalizing and spending precious time with my loved ones, doing fun things
and doing nothing at all (which is underrated in my opinion)
It is too easy to get caught up in he day to day…
I am grateful to have this time to think, to write and to plan for the future.

~nlm

Related and not so related articles

 

The costs of camouflaging autism   

(Spectrumnews.org)

Why It’s Hard To Keep A Job When You Have Asperger’s  

(psychcentral.com)

Someone Saved My Life Tonight – Elton John   

(Youtube.com)

 

Photograph: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images
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And so I have this blog…

 

And so I have this blog..

 

…well I used to have one. I  mean I used to write one, quite regularly; at least twice a week. I wrote over 200 posts, most of them fairly long. They are on an array of subjects, some of them are okay, some kinda good.

It was a labor of love really. I poured my heart out loud into the universe. I expressed myself.  I made friends from all over the world I would chat with.  I had fun and I also had lots of time on my hands, much more than I do now.

Time, that awful excuse. I doubt I lack talent, It is in there somewhere. And I do have something to say and a orgasmictorium of stories inside my crazy brain. I can blame the lack of time or place but it is I who makes my own circumstance. Time ticks away, yes that damn time always ticking in the background.

No one lives forever…even childlike creatures such as myself…

I know I must make it a priority.

And thinking,,,pondering.  THAT is essential!

One of the problems with this society is that not enough thought is given, we are all much too busy wrapped up in “the drudgery of everyday existence and all that” I like many of you wonder what is the point?

Hard not to.  I sit here on a rare silent Saturday. It is early morning. The sun is streaming through the window and I am on floor, sitting with my trusty white laptop. It has seen “better” days,  I suppose.  The O and L keys are completely worn away along with the I. Half the E is gone and the N is on the verge of disappearing altogether. To add the that the seven is coming off and it is filled with about 5 years of memories, pieces of my life encased in pixels. If anything such as this could hold a part of a person, this computer contains a part of me.

I have changed over the years.  I have gone beyond my comfort zone, I have outed and declared myself and have freed myself from much which did not serve me. I have busted out of my shell and I am ready to contribute more. I have learned some lessons as I continue to do. This late bloomer is still blooming

Just one more thing, the writing part..

 

My ex boyfriend/partner, the man I lived with for 17 years (also known as MM to those who have been around for a while) said that my problem was that I wrote too much about myself. He told me a lot of things, much I believed, much I now know was wrong.

I told him there are a million writers in the world, all with something to say. I am a mere drop in the bucket, a soul pouring myself out into a silent universe…but I am unique. just like everyone of us. There is only one me, whatever that means. The best thing I can write is what comes from my heart, from my soul and that is what I must do. I cannot do any less.

I happen to know more about myself than anything or anyone. But I also know that I am not the only one who feels the way I do. Others can and do relate. We are all connected even we we are apart.

and so…MM is in the old house with the cats. I am here with my new cat and new love. A lot has changed in the past year, but not my desire to write and as always I lament my lack of writing time as I pound these white fading keys…

Let’s see what I can come up with.

Thanks for stopping by. This blog is NOT completely dead.

~nlm

 

 

 

Totally “unrelated” stuff I put in for the hell of it. 

BoB Marley-Sun is shining

 

 

Traits of an Empath. (Elephantjournal.com)

 

The New Kitty

MOCHA!!

Look for new stories featuring his antics!!

 

MOCHA CAT #mochacat

 

 

 

 

SOUND

“In the world I am
Always a stranger
I do not understand its language
It does not understand my silence”
― Bei Dao

All I want for Christmas is some peace and quiet.    I need a retreat. A retreat from noise, a retreat from interruption. A break from the outside world that interferes with my thinking and writing.  I must do both of theses things and if I don’t for a while I become like a caged tiger. I pace the confines of my cell all stored up and ready to pounce, except that I don’t pounce–I suck it all in.

I am kind and patient. Seldom do I lose this demeanor but there are times that I feel as though I am a ticking time bomb ready to go off.  The pressure builds and builds, I cannot flee–I cannot fight–I hold it all in. This can’t be good for my health.

 

tiger art maxresdefault

 

There is no place where noise does not scream at me. I pretend that it doesn’t effect me like it does. I learned to fake nonchalance a long time ago but there is nothing nonchalant about me. I have prided myself in my outer coolness but I must confess and it feels damn good to confess that at times on the inside I can burn hot like a volcano.

 

WOMAN fire art

I try to meditate in my own way.  I seek out nature and I think good thoughts. I am earnest in my devotion to goodness, truth and beauty and all that. I believe I only lack one simple thing. Something that if granted to me would enable me to take on the world–whatever it takes. Silence, a wee bit of silence would save me. Time to listen to nothing would be utter bliss.

 

quote quiet still

 

If you have ever listened to silence you know what I mean.

Silence allows the mind to wander freely.  It gives us a chance to take a deep breath and relax.  The world is a noisy place, most of us experience a great amount of it in our daily lives.  These form the soundtrack to our lives. Most of it we cannot control.

 I seldom mention this but I am on the Autism spectrum (Asperger’s) and sensitive to sound. I have always been this way. Certain noises are amplified  in my head and at times this can be overwhelming.  Echoing reverberating noises, kids screaming, crowds of people talking, generally loud and unpredictable noises, these sounds can unhinge me but also small and meaningless ones too can set me on edge. I have learned to control my urges and I can block a lot of it out but this is tiring and doesn’t allow me to ponder like I like to do.

Noise effects me in good ways as well as bad. There are good sounds. Music is exquisite rapture and so are the sounds of nature; songbirds, the breeze in the trees, crickets, the ocean. These sounds speak to my soul. They call to the restlessness and the calmness in me. They soothe, invigorate and inspire.

These sounds are big and open like waves,  they do not mind sharing space with all the thoughts my mind.  These sounds not only allow me to think, to contemplate, they allow my mind to simply wander freely without intent purely for the sake of wandering.

Haystack Rock Cannon Beach Oregon sky water beautiful

 

I feel at one with the universe. I feel at peace.

Sounds can transport one to another place. I have listened to recordings of birdsong and whales and other natures noises. I will close my eyes and imagine myself there; in the forest or by a lake or in a bird sanctuary wherever it be my mind can travel there.

Music is especially magical.  Slack Key Guitar music instantly takes me to the Tropics and certain Heavy Metal songs from the 80’s take me back to my rebellious teens.  Melodies paint colorful landscapes across the universe of my mind.

color tree mountain lake water night sinset beautiful back

Just thinking of all this is good for the spirit. Already I am calmed.  It’s through expressing myself I’ll find the peace I seek. I know that I create my own reality and I know that if something is important enough I will make time for it.

Writing and putting this post together has certainly worked it’s magic on me. And I hope it will for you too.  Please take a listen to the wonderful sounds by clicking on the following links that will transport you to the mythical land called Youtube where the music of nature will play for you.  Enjoy and have a nice day!

~NLM

beach waves gif

 

Sounds of Nature: Ocean Waves

 

White-throated Sparrow (Zonotrichia albicollis) perched on a branch in Manitoba, Canada.

White-throated Sparrow: Whistler of the North

 

field of flowers

Bach, Air (“on the G string”, string orchestra)

***

Related Articles

Musical Landscapes (strawberryindigo.wordpress.com)

Listen   (strawberryindigo.wordpress.com)

The Comfort Zone

 

gif water flow

 

Change comes in starts and fits; it ebbs and flows along the river of life–always moving, flowing along…each moment bleeding into the next . The seasons change. Exuberant Spring quickly turns to lush Summer and then is gradually replaced by the deepening beauty of Autumn. I feel every part of it; this cycle of life.  It seemed there was a time not very long ago when life was eternally young. I was always in a hurry to get on with things. It was always “what’s next?”.  It wasn’t until I grew a bit older and became a mother; when I was able to see life vicariously through a pair of newer but different eyes, that’s when I realized the significance of these small seemingly insignificant moments.

Being a parent changed me like nothing else. The experience has shown me the importance of being there for someone. It has shown me the strength of love and the power of devotion. Motherhood made me strong where once I was weak. It was on a Winters day back in 1994 when I gave birth to my son, that was the day I began to become who I am today.

Where once I was a rebellious teen I become a resilient adult. I have never lost the ideals of youth. Sure, I have tempered my dreams with reality but I’ve never given them up and I never will. To stop dreaming is to stop living. And I plan to go on living for a long time.

fantasy bed forest nap Photo by Ditte Isager

I suppose one could call it hibernating; what I’ve been doing. I’ve stayed away from blogging and writing in general. I have been engaged in the “Art of Living”.  The day to day. The grind. The moment. I have taken a side job selling men’s clothes in an well-known upscale department store for the upcoming Holiday season. I’ve never done retail before and  am finding the change refreshing. It’s nice to get out of a lonely two-person office and out into the world of rampant consumerism.

Gone is the long commute of last year and replaced by a short 15 minute drive. Yay!  Time is too valuable to waste on a insane commute of 3 hours a day. My pay is less but I am much happier. For so many reasons I am much happier.

I am finally facing myself; my demons, my weaknesses, whatever you call them. I am finally getting my birdbrain out of the sand and I’m opening my eyes and looking around.  I am forcing myself to peek out from my hazy pools of imaginative avoidance, past the fairies and unicorns and the happy talking trees to the playing field below; the hard turf and rugged terrain of reality.

 

 Yikes!  But I am seeing the challenge and rising to it.

 

 

autumn mountains cloud sky by Lars

I gallop along; riding far beyond my enchanted kingdom into the dreaded realm that ‘s called “out of my comfort zone”. I’ve been visiting this place quite regularly and every time I do  I grow stronger and stronger.  It’s amazing what a little white-knuckled courage will do.  I have found through trial and mostly error that life forces one to foray beyond this zone. I would rather choose the circumstance instead of the wilds of fate deciding for me. This is the downfall of the procrastinator–something I know too well.

On my dresser sits a 3×5 card. On it I have written a quote by Marcus Aurelius, a Roman emperor and philosopher who opted to write his book “Meditations”  entirely in Greek and for his eyes only. It’s funny how at times the words you need to hear most come at exactly the right time you need to hear them., even when they were written two thousand years ago. Knowledge is timeless. But we mortals are not.

 

Remember how long you have been putting this off, how many times you have been given a period of grace by the gods and not used it. It is high time now for you to understand the universe of whom you constitute an emanation and that there is a limit circumscribed to your time–if you do not use it to clear away your clouds, it will be gone, and you will be gone and the opportunity will not return.”~Marcus Aurelius

 

 

These words and others have changed me bit by bit. My current course has altered and is flowing to what are  hopefully greener pastures. This growing up stuff hurts but it’s worth it.   Don’t get me wrong; the fanciful Nancy. The whimsical silly person who has fun wherever she goes lives on. The bubbly person that I have allowed to gradually blossom currently still runs the show.  I am still cultivating “magic” and throwing it up in the air like all that pixie dust. I, in fact, endeavor to increase the dosage.  The world needs it and frankly so do I.

 

sara and nancy halloween 2
My daughter Sara and I spreading some Halloween “magic”

 

sara halloween scary face

 

nancy butterfly halloween profile pic

 

I have taken it as my mission to appreciate not only every moment but every interaction with every soul I meet.  This sounds daunting and will require going out of my comfort zone more and more but as I do this comfort area will get larger and larger until it encircles the world…well, in theory anyway.  I will try. I will fall down and I will get back up, that’s all any of us can do anyway.

We have a new edition to the family. Spotsy came to us by a quirk of fate, by design or whatever.  He needed a home and we needed an extra cat so it all works out.  My daughter has taken it upon herself to see to his upbringing and Mario and I still have time for our long and reflective discussions.

Spotsy
Spotsy

 

I’ve started a new blog! Ta-da!  It’s all SBI but newer and edgier and more compact. It’s silly trippy fun. No long-winded dour reality here. It’s all for fun and it can be found here.

sbi serendipity

 

Go check it out and sign up for a dose of the lighter side of SBI fresh in your inbox. 

😀

I am looking forward to catching up with you so don’t be suprised to see me pop up over at your place. I have missed my blogging friends and I am glad to be back.

Nancy

bill the cat

 

Related and Unrelated Articles

Serendipity 13  ( The very first post)

Passenger – Scare Away The Dark (Official Video)

The Great Unfinished

 

 

 

awesome_vintage_photos_with_animals_ girl dog

 

 

42 drafts…well 43 drafts sit here waiting in my to do box like faithful canine friends patiently awaiting my return.  They sit in various forms of completion and come in all shapes and sizes; some are tiny puppies of a paragraph or two, others are stately Great Danes of considerable verbiage that lack a certain something, a doneness, something beyond simple edits and rewrites.  I cannot truly write anything worthy before it’s time. The moment must be right.

And so as a result…

They are an ever-growing mass,  these unfinished ones. They haunt the corners of this blog walking from room to room looking for something. Some whine for attention, others howl,  most  just sit there.  As you have probably guessed, I have a case of chronic procrastination. I have always been this way;  I start a multitude of  creative projects only to have them linger in some state of  incompletion.  I am sort of infamous around here, at least at the little red house on 79th street, for having a million and one ideas that I never follow through on.

As time goes on this weighs on me more and more. These unfinished things represent this whole tendency of mine and along with my Asperger’s has served as my excuse for my holding myself back from participating in life. I’ve always been a terrific starter but a horrible finisher.
And there is such a multitude of business…my mind comes on like a radio with a half a dozen stations all competing for my attention. At times it can be hard to pick just one. One idea will give birth to the next. And one draft can easily grow into two or more. Many cousins akin to these drafts are finished posts which haunt the “pages” of this site.

I am a little person with big ideas. Lots of silly ones but others I think may be quite viable. My dream job would be to come up with great ideas for others to implement and charge them for it.     I would keep busy in a glorious garden adjacent to a greenhouse with a big lemon tree in the center. Mario, my cat would be my assistant and we would think up great ideas all day while drinking coffee and having fun.

Seriously…

I am over 40, my kids are almost grown. Time is passing. And the time seems right to finish something I suppose.  It has been three years since I began this blog; this “great” experiment. My 200 + published posts on this blog have shown me that I can finish something and something I can be proud of. I just have to buy into the hype I been selling: I need to believe and have faith and just do it…

 

cat face

Update: Well..I did it I summoned up the courage and submitted my first  piece for publication. I don’t expect to hear anything, it would be a miracle if I did.  I had an anxiety attack. I don’t know why.

 

It is a beginning…

~Nancy

 

.

 

“Human life is but a series of footnotes to a vast obscure unfinished masterpiece”
Vladimir Nabokov

 

*

 

Schubert: Unfinished Symphony No.8

 

Aspire to Inspire

ASPIRE:  To seek to attain or accomplish a particular goal.

Middle English, from Middle French or Latin; Middle Frenchaspirer, from Latin aspirare, literally, to breathe upon, fromad- + spirare to breathe.

To aspire is to dare. To dare to want more. 

Aspire is the desire to propel oneself skyward. It is born in the heart like a flame that burns hot with the passion of want. Dreams fuel aspiration. Passion drives it and hard work makes it so.  With care and feeding  aspirations can grow wings and set flight to all points amazing…

 

Mount-Haleakala-Hawaii

 

We are what we aspire to. Our dreams define us.

I have a dream; one I never knew I had until fairly recently. I found it huddled under a pile of forgotten hopes that I had neglected to remember I’d left it in the back of my closet.  I could exaggerate and press upon you this jive about a noble truth that propels me. I might confess a deficiency I have and this need to make up for what I’ve felt I have lacked in my life. The truth is I did not purposely seek this road.  In the beginning all I sought was my own salvation.

I had walked in darkness for many years and yearned to find my way back into the light. I knew fulfillment and happiness lives there but in the dark it’s difficult to see.  It’s lonely out there, at least it seems so…but I learned something important. I realized I wasn’t alone and there are others out there in the dark reaching for the light just the same as I… and not knowing where to find it. This simple truth eluded me for years. It is my truth but not mine alone….

By helping others we help ourselves.

It is tempting to take credit; to say that my stirrings to inspire are purely unselfish but the truth is; I aspire to inspire because it feels so damn good..besides I really don’t know any other way.

I have found that people who have struggled, who have fought something bigger than themselves…who have had life hurt them have a yearning to light the way for others, to say: “I’ve been where you are now and there is a light at the end of the tunnel…I know because I can see it.” 

peace friendship-63743_640

 

We all need help from time to time…

I believe greatness abounds. There is greatness in you and there is greatness in me but the greatest greatness lies in we. Our fullest potential is alive and well and it is just within our grasp. Sometimes all we need is a pat on the back, a smile and a reassuring voice.  Everybody needs this..no one is above it. It is basic. It is human and it is beautiful.

 

We are the content creators; the writers, the artists, the dreamers. We are a unique breed who yearn to inspirit and inflame others with that magic spark that burns so bright in our hearts and souls.

 

quote happy women

 

This wonderful planet of ours is teeming with inspiration. One just needs to know where to look and one need not look far. I have found much inspiration in the words of many of you in this wonderful creative community of ours.  Through your posts and comments I have learned so much!  Time and time again I’ve experienced firsthand that no matter how different we may seem on the outside, we are alike on the inside. We all need insight and inspiration from time to time and I have surely gotten this from you. Thank you for sharing your world with me.

 

 

Wishing you an inspired day

Nancy

woman sitting on rock sunset shadow contemplation

Far away there in the sunshine are my highest aspirations. I may not reach them, but I can look up and see their beauty, believe in them, and try to follow where they lead.” 
― Louisa May Alcott

Hopped Up on Writing

I have been invited by my good blogging buddy Cathy to participate in something called a blog hop. At first I thought it was some sort of dance. I have since learned it involves answering some tough hard-hitting questions about writing in a thoughtful, and meaningful way and then passing on the challenge…I mean “invitation” to the next worthy writer who I assume will hop his or her on way to the next contestant.   The topic is “Why I write”
Cathy is one of my most favorite people in the entire blogosphere. I have been following her since the beginning.  She writes in such a way that conveys friendliness and warmth.  Her site is beautiful. Her photos are lovely and her recipes are yummy.  I wished she didn’t live so far away because I would love to visit her. Besides having a great blog she is such a great person.
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Cathy from Words and herbs

So hop on by to  Words and Herbs and visit Cathy and you will see why I like her so much.

Also see how Cathy answered her questions: Blog Hopping: Why I Write

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the-star-sun
Before I get started with my questions I would like to introduce you to Steven Webb. He writes a wonderful blog called The Moving Road. Steven is a wonderful heartfelt writer who has a powerful message of encouragement all his own.  I believe he and I share a concern for others and a yearning to inspire people and say “Yes you can!”  You can also find Steven on Twitter and Facebook.  Go to his site and check him out and find out just how multi talented he is.   Once he answers the five questions and publishes his post I will put a link to it HERE.
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Steven Webb blog hop

I blog and tweet about the good stuff, helping people see things differently and overcome their own adversity. Join me on this journey” – Steven Webb

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And the funny thing is…
It just so happens that I had just finished being interviewed by Oprah for her magazine. Funny enough she asked me these very same questions (AMAZING!  I know) and so out of the kindness of her heart and she is kind that Oprah. She has allowed me to feature the interview in its entirety for you here today.
That sounds far fetched. Are you making this up girl?
That sounds far fetched. Are you making this up girl?
The Five Questions
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What am  I working on?  Besides the zillion and one drafts in my inbox?  My crazy mind has now engaged itself in the production of a feature length extravaganza in the form of a real life book. (yay!)  An escapist fantasy adventure that is now unfolding itself in bits and pieces into my eclectic imagination. The more I think of it the more it becomes real. At this point it’s practically creating itself; I close my eyes and watch it form.  I have pretty much erected the framework and now I need to fill in the details–the more I write  the more it needs to be written and the more I need to write it.
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How does my writing differ from others in it’s genre?  
I don’t have a genre at all in that I probably differ from most writers. Of the two hundred plus blog posts I have written no two are quite the same. I flutter and flitter around subjects and genres, styles and moods. Words are my paints in every glorious color of the rainbow, my brush slides and glides across the canvas,  and from it springs wide landscapes and broad vistas, from the tiny and seemingly insignificant to the giant elephant in the room. I try to capture that all-elusive truth with honest humor and silliness tinged with an underlying something that sneaks up and causes the reader to think or feel. That is what I aim to do anyway. I believe that any writer who wants to engage the reader must write from the bottom of their heart and the deepest reaches of their soul. Never hold back your truth.
Write what you LOVE, what you care about.
Write what you LOVE, what you care about.
I write what’s in my heart, what I care about. I write whatever is floating around in my silly imagination.  Slivers and shards of life maneuver and twist themselves into my writing. I wear my heart on my sleeve and on my blog as well.
The thinking of deep thoughts
The thinking of deep thoughts
How does my writing process work? Most of it is spent thinking and not writing at all.  Ideas form in my mind and emotions swirl around them. I take notes in one or more of the very many spiral notebooks I have littered all over.  From that I will compose on the computer allowing the words to come out. If I have the luxury of peace and quiet the words usually just flow out like water. It is at times the easiest thing in the world for me to do.  I wish life were that easy…(sigh)
From there I edit it and tighten it up, smooth it out.  MM helps with the punctuation, which I am lousy at. He encourages me to tighten up my long winded run-on sentences which I sometimes do. Then I publish it and forget all about it…then it’s on to the next one!
Of course the book will be different. Much more rewrite and polish. And the publishing part will be more involved than simply clicking “publish”. I’m going to take what I do best and work with what I have and that’s all any of us can do.
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I’d write anyway. Even if there was no one to read it. That is how nuts I am.
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Have a great day and remember to visit my friends Cathy and Steven.
♥ Nancy

 

strawberries-are-pollinated-by-bees