Blog posts, musings, and thoughts on life in general

Happy New Year! 

I’m a bit late with the link up this month, and it all looks a bit different as I’ve moved my blog over from metheboythemonster.com so that it’s all here in one place. However, it’s all the same underneath, I promise! This month’s linked blogs are below, but more will be added all the time so do pop back and check. 

Please remember to comment on and share any blogs you like, and click on the blue ‘Click here to enter’ link at the bottom to add your own post.

Don’t forget to tweet me when you’ve added a post, so I know there’s something new to read and share!

I’ve just added my blog post [YOUR POST NAME GOES HERE] to @folkycat’s Adoption Blog link up. You can add yours too! Click to Tweet

My autism diagnosis is still a really new thing for me, but I’ve been feeling more and more over the last couple of weeks that I wanted to tell people about it. One reason is because there are quite probably tens of thousands of people like me, who have no clue that they’re autistic, and the only way that is going to change is by amplifying autistic voices and providing an alternative to the ‘awkward geeky guy’ stereotype that most people associate with the word ‘autism’.

The other reason though, I think, is because I feel this real need to live my new life as authentically as possible. My life since diagnosis has been a series of lightbulb moment - sudden realisations that explain so many different aspects of my past. I do feel like a different person. I feel calmer, lighter, more aware of myself. I’m enjoying getting to know the person under the many layers of masking that have built up over the last 38 years.

My life since diagnosis has been a series of lightbulb moment - sudden realisations that explain so many different aspects of my past. Click to Tweet

I have had a very mixed experience with the world of employment. I often feel like I haven't really achieved the things I'm capable of, haven't got where I want to be in my career. Where I'm capable of. I don't quite mean that I haven't reached the pinnacle of my career yet, I mean that I, as I am today, right now, ought to be doing better than I am.

I'm pretty sure this is not a uniquely autistic thing, but there are a few things I need to unpack about why I've struggled in work, so that I can move on and do better. I also really want to do this in a balanced way, so I can work out what I do well, as well as what I struggle with.

To the outside world, I think I look quite successful. People are often saying nice things about 'amazing' things I've done, but I have come to the conclusion that they are using completely different measures of success to me. It's quite difficult for me to marry up these positive comments with how I feel inside - again, not exclusively an autistic thing, I know, but I think there's an additional element in that I find it really difficult to understand how other people see me. (I have an awful lot to say on theory of mind, but that will have to wait for another day!)

I am taking part in the Instagram Chronic Illness January Photo Challenge, and I thought I'd try and write a few blog posts to go along with the pictures I'm posting. Today's theme is 'Diagnosis'.

One of my main motivations for writing about my experience with autism - aside from using the process of writing to help me work through my thought process - is to provide another voice for women who have lived a significant portion of their lives without knowing that they're autistic. I'm certain I will know other people who are on the spectrum, but haven't realised it, and if writing honestly about my experiences can help someone else make a connection with their own life then I feel I ought to do it.

So - diagnosis.

The lake at Blenheim PalaceOver the Christmas holidays so far, I reckon our 'nice bits' to 'hard bits' ratio is probably about 70:30. Possibly slightly better, if you take in to account the fact that the hard bits are no where near as hard as they used to be. Last year's Christmas ratio was about 20:80 at best I reckon, and looking back at the blog from this time last year it seems T was going through a bitey phase as well. The worst we've had this holiday is hitting, and even then I think it's only been once or twice.

Gosh, it's so weird writing that, when I think back to posts I've written in the past describing the CPV that was happening multiple times per DAY, for anything up to a couple of hours at a time.

Some of this change can probably be put down to the simple passing of time, but there are a few quite clear things I can pick out that we have done, or are doing differently.

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© 2019 Cat McGill