Thursday, November 1, 2018

Autistics Speaking Day 2018

Leeanne Marshall, Autistics Speaking Day 2018 on oneautisticperson Tumblr.

Autistics Speaking Day 2018

It is currently the 1st November, 2018 meaning it is once again Autistics Speaking Day and time for my yearly blog post. Last week, I thought I would not get around to writing anything. I was out of energy and strangely, feeling disconnected. A week later after plenty of thinking (mainly while having long, relaxing baths), I am feeling okay enough to attempt to write something. This post is not a challenge to anyone (as some of my other autistics speaking day posts have been). It is a post for me to look back on next year should I feel the need to. Hopefully others will find it valuable as well.
Transitions. Transitions can be hard for autistic people and I am no exception. When I left secondary school and started university, I went from a small secondary school to a much larger place. I remember thinking I was going to faint in some of the lecture theatres, hiding under random staircases around university to get away from people and telling my disability advisor I would not do my study part-time because I hated university and wanted to leave as soon as possible. I was convinced I did not belong at university and would always hate it. That first meeting with my disability advisor was awkward in other ways to. She asked me what I thought I needed on my disability access plan and I responded that I did not know. I relied on the disability advisor at university to tell me what I would likely need, though I did say no to several suggestions.
I finished my first university degree and started a second one. For the career I had planned on, this was necessary. Despite my second degree taking place at the same university, I again hated the first few months and felt I did not belong. I completed the second degree but realised I needed a new career pathway. I ended up going into a third degree in disability studies, again at the same university. Once again the first few months of the degree was hard (though this time it was made easier by me frequently talking to my lecturers from previous degrees). I also started a casual job for the first time during this degree which caused anxiety. One of lecturers offered to let me go home from class due to how pale I looked. Ultimately though, I am finding the degree valuable (the only part of university I really dislike is writing assessments, research is fine) and I enjoyed the casual job. Once I got through the first few months of major transitions, I was fine.
What does this tell me? Above all, since my university study is taking a different direction next year and because I am soon taking up more casual work, this post is to remind myself that although I will likely struggle with the changes in the beginning, I will most likely be okay. This is also a reminder that focus on transition for autistic people is important and therefore my study direction is important.
…..also, Intellectual property and recognition of work are terms that have repeatedly come up in my life this year. As such, I think it is time I put my real name to my blog entries. This post and all previous posts on this blog have been written by Leeanne Marshall aka oneautisticperson (of many autistic people).

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