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Old 03-13-2019, 04:10 AM
lostnthought lostnthought is offline
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Member Since: Feb 2019
Location: US
Posts: 5
lostnthought lostnthought is offline
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Member Since: Feb 2019
Location: US
Posts: 5

Default Hi

Just wanted to introduce myself, say hello.

I found something recently, quite by accident, something Iíve been looking for, for some time, to understand why I am, who I am. It was an article on Aspergerís Syndrome. I havenít been formally diagnosed, nor do I care to be. I am who I am, I always have been, and Iím good with that.

My childhood was, simply put, terrorizing. I lived in constant fear of a world I didnít understand, couldnít communicate with, in emotional meltdown. The people who cared for me did the best they could. But this was the early 60ís, long before Aspergerís was widely known, and we were very poor. There was little help.

Through the years, there were a few people who pushed their way into the darkness, and held my hand, if just for a little while. One was an elementary school teacher. I was very young, years behind my class. They usually sat me in the very back of the room, where I was most comfortable, well at least, less disruptive. A good day was a day I could make it through without breaking into tears, in utter meltdown. Then one day, a young teacher pulled me aside, to a quiet corner in the back of the room. She handed me a series of books, lesson plans of sort, and quietly explained, I should read through them, and answer as many questions as I could, just start at the beginning, and take my time. I did just that, and the next book, and the next, and the next. Soon I caught up with the class, then quite suddenly, I was a year ahead. I learned, in that moment of childhood, that I was both less and more, so much more, and I could choose.

I was learning to cope, but I was still very much alone, lost inside myself. As a boy, I found peace in the solitude of the woods near our home. I would pack small bits of wire and string, neatly wound, and other such things I might need for the day, in a small box, then head off for a long hike. I had a place by the lake, where I would sit for endless hours, watching the fish gently fin the water, in their own rhythm. It was quiet, and peaceful. As I grew, I explored those woods, in broader and broader circles, to the mountains beyond. Yes, I had brothers and sisters, but I spent my childhood very much alone.

We were desperately poor, but somehow my mother managed. My Christmas gift, often, was a book or two, torn and tattered college text books. As I entered high school, I was proficient in chemistry, physics, and math, reading at a college level. Now, I suppose, a ďtroubled but gifted child.Ē I struggled to make friends; they lived in a different world. The prejudice of social class only deepened the divide.

I chose a college far from home, a prominent engineering school. I quickly fell into my own safe routine. I avoided classes, I learned nothing there. I chose instead, to read through the texts on my own, work through endless derivations on reems of crisp white paper, often under a quiet tree on a hill overlooking the quad. Friends? A few, I suppose, simple opportunistic relationships. College was a success, as I defined it. I graduated at the top of my class with a near perfect GPA.

Iím looking back now, at a long and successful career, as scientist and engineer. I struggled at times, with the internal politics of corporate life, for which I have great contempt. But excelled in developing commercial relationships; many countries, cultures, and values. It seems in these sterile relationships, blunt honesty, principle, and loyalty are very much appreciated. Simple values translate well.

I am still the me that is me, that always was. Personal relationships? The only one Iíve ever needed, the love of my life, my wife of over thirty years. She is incredibly patient and understanding. I live my life in a string of singular obsessions, blind and oblivious. Post-it notes litter my bathroom mirror, reminding me of important things I need to do today. And I still find peace lost in the mountains, sitting on a rock, quietly watching the fishes. But now with a flyrod in my hand.

I suppose itís true, we spend our lives getting to know ourselves.
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