Meet today's guest writer, Jason Muxworthy. He is a big Dr. Who fan as you can see from the great photo of him above. Jason is also the guest on my podcast, MIND YOUR AUTISTIC BRAIN this week. Podcast Link I am celebrating the big "10" today on the Podcast as this is the 10th episode and your 5 star ratings and reviews have been pouring in each week. I am so excited the podcast is resonating with you and giving you great insights each week. We are a beautiful community of varied voices and on the podcast you get to meet someone you may relate to and connect with each week. You are not alone my friend. Enjoy Jason's article below on sharing his autism diagnosis with the world. Thanks for this Jason!!!
God Makes No Mistakes – Born This Way. Part 1.
First of all I would like to thank Lady Gaga for the title of this blog. As a result you may be reading this with a deal of trepidation as to what might be coming next. Some of you might already know what I am about to reveal about myself, either because I told you or you have worked it out. Also for those of you who have read my previous blogs any preconceived idea of me might be about to be turned on its head.
I’m Autistic – there it is, out in the open. To be precise I have what is more commonly known as Asperger’s Syndrome, sometimes referred to as being an ‘Aspie’. So first let me start with some personal myth busting:
· I am not like Rainman – He was an Autistic Savant.
· I did not ‘catch’ Autism, it is something you are born with.
· I am not mentally defective or intellectually sub-normal – far from it!
· Autism is not demonic possession; it is just a different view of the world – Read the Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night time.
Yes, I have been confronted by these unhelpful labels throughout my life, and as I was only diagnosed when I was 47 (ie ‘late diagnosis’) not only had I had to deal with these prejudices but I had also learned to copy other ‘normal’ people’s (Neuro Typical – aka NT) behaviour in order to blend in with the rest of the world. For me personally Autism is ability not dis-ability.
Even though the condition is so incredibly diverse we as Aspies experience the world in a completely different way in comparison with NT’s; sounds appear louder, colours brighter, textures, tastes and smells more intense – growing up, for me, night-clubs were a night-mare. Sometimes the best way of describing it is like having the volume and contrast of your TV turned up to maximum and having the stereo going full blast for good measure! This sounds very negative so far, but it isn’t.
I could so easily be bound to and by this, but it is my choice not to and I have to consciously major on the positives of my condition, because that is what God calls me to do. This is despite how emotionally and physically draining it might be to do so – and there are times when I buckle under the weight.
Philippians 4v8: Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
What for me then are the positives of being a Christian Aspie? Although for some / many NT’s these may be viewed as ‘negatives’.
· Excellent memory – I am also quite useful to have in your team in quizzes!
· Insight – From time to time God uses me to bring new insights into His word that many people may not notice.
· Hyper Focusing – If I get something in my head I can find myself digging into scripture (or whatever) to get to the fullest meaning of a text. I rarely let go until I feel that all avenues are explored to my satisfaction.
· Original thinker – Not uncommon to think of / consider completely new ways of doing things, which for an Aspie is quite something as it is generally accepted that we are uncomfortable with change and like routine.
· No problems with speaking in front of a group of people – but, paradoxically stay silent in a group.
· Truthful – If you ask me a question I will give an honest answer but this can come in an unfiltered format.
· Can concentrate for long periods of time – really handy in some sermons!
· Passionate – If I am doing something I enjoy and/or am interested in there can be, will be, no half measures.
This is by no means an exhaustive list and over the next few blogs I will endeavour to expand on this and how it impacts both my relationship with God, those I am in fellowship with, but also hopefully help people in the church become more aware of this condition.