I AM THE VOICE OF AUTISM
I am an ocean wearing away at a shore covered with fine marbles— and whenever I get tired of swaying; people remind me of how much they love me and how often they wish I would be like them.
If I were to tell you a story; you’d have to be seated around a fire beneath an old tree and the open vault of the night firmament. My eyes would be gazing into the distant night cover as it extends before us. I would hold you under the light of a thousand stars. Then I would tell you a story about Privilege…
Children walk around plagued by pain in their hearts because people would rather change them than let them be who they are. Sitting alone the empty spaces of time, searching for a great perhaps, my mind settles on ghost stories that were told by people who believed the greatest privilege of human existence was- and has always been: being yourself. No matter where you came from or how you happened in the world, your greatest asset was showing the world your uniqueness, your difference.
If I was on the Autism Spectrum Disorder; I would think everyone hates me. When I was in church, the pastor said I was cursed in my mother’s womb, and no one had acceptance for me. In my neck of the woods, even money cannot buy acceptance.
When I was 9, my Sunday school teacher said that God’s love was unconditional and that it was very anticlimactic for me to tell him about the errors in my brain. My pain plunged beneath my dermis. I cried; because I was different. I cried because they treated me as a problem child before they treated me as a person. My privileges were met with displeasure and acceptance was distant from me as Pluto was from the sun.
Maybe you should whisper sweet nothings in my ear and my pain will disappear like smoke in the wind. They’ll disappear into joy. The erosion of my resolve by facts and time is that if people knew what it’s like to be paralyzed constantly in fear of not knowing what to say, they would understand that I didn’t want to be birthed with a different brain; then they would accept me and not crush my dreams even before they hear them.
People like us are not loved, we are liked by the sands of time as if we were the water meandering from fiery hills. We are applauded but not remembered; abused, yet remain silent because we feel emotions intensely and can be overwhelmed by the emotions of those around them.