Thursday, May 28, 2015

Feelings & Autism

For as long as I can remember, my feelings have been strong. Not being one to enjoy a loss of balance, emotionally speaking, my feelings about my feelings have also been strong. The end result has always been an internal tug-of-war which generally stops me in my tracks until the emotional storms pass. Then life goes on. 

Yesterday I wrote a post while one of those storms raged. I was filled with disappointment, some despair, much impatience, anger, and more. I spoke of the pretentiousness I feel like encounter on a regular basis and wonder why no one else seems to see what is plainly a growing issue--with everyone--not just Christians, but I did target my particular demographic yesterday.

And I still do, but I want to go on record that I've been guilty (for most of my life) of being pretentious myself. Everything from my comments on Facebook (which I've stopped using), who I know, what I wear, to what I say and even what I do not say for a long time, have been tainted with a kind of self-righteousness that does not sit well with me anymore. In short, my insecurities, fears, and dreams have turned me into a bragger so I could gain the acceptance and approval of other people.

I do not think that the people I encountered this weekend meant to cause so much pain. I do not think they meant to cause any pain to be honest. They communicated pretty much the way anyone else does these days, and they are forgiven. Even so that doesn't mean that bragging, boasting, and excluding others is acceptable. It really isn't, except the only way to put an end to something is to realize it's been started in the first place. I don't think anyone really knows they've even gotten to this point.

This way of relating to others is part cultural, but also much of it stems from our fears. I think all of us are afraid of rejection and exclusion to the point we exalt ourselves as a way to fortify our emotions against the judgments of others--but if we are not fooling them, we at least may be drawn to the comfort of fooling ourselves.

We were made for relationship, however, and even since yesterday when I decided to stop spending social time with others, my throat has been hurting, my heart has been pounding, and my lymph nodes have become sore. My body is telling me that isolation hurts, so I am not sure how to handle all of this. For now, though, I still prefer to be by myself. 

As hard as this is, one of the things I'm enjoying in this process is that I'm learning not to judge my thoughts and feelings. It is taking a little bit longer for my emotions to level out but I think it's because I'm not forcing myself to "get over myself" in a hurry just to please other people who believe that a depressed Christian is somehow not living right. The longer I take to work through this, the more honest and peaceful the end result will be. I expect God to take this mess and make something beautiful out of in only the way that He can. He will make a way. I have to trust that.


  1. Oh Kelly! How I wish a million-fold we were nearer each other... I would adore spending time with you. We think quite alike, and I too, am disheartened by so much of the same, and particularly what you mentioned regarding those in the Body struck a chord. It crosses every stream.

    I immediately thought of this song, by a band I like...please forgive their name, but goodness! These lyrics speak VOLUMES to me...and if you ever get the chance the lead singer has an incredible voice. :-)

  2. Hi, Jillian. Thank you for your kind comments. Now that my mind is clear again, I feel a little foolish for having written much of those events down, but I chose to because present at that same get-together was a beautiful, beautiful young man who was also once diagnosed with HFA. He is a recent college graduate, and except for perhaps not really knowing what to say to strangers, to me, there was just about NO trace of autism at all. REALLY. But I was just so irked! for him to have to witness how some of the others there treated me, because I didn't want him to think that was how we was going to be treated 20 years from now. I was angry for the both of us.

    Cool song! I like the line..."present and future is where I need to be." Me, too. I only have two eyes and neither one of them really need to be on the past!

    I'm sure, by the way, I would enjoy spending time with you, too.