A Butterfly with the Wings Pulled Off

Roses

A rose in C.S. Lewis’ garden

Right now, I feel like a butterfly with the wings pulled off. Although I love my family and Minnesota, all of me long to be back in Oxford. Or at least somewhere where I am free to soar, grow, and learn. Everything here is stagnant, including myself.

Each day, my spirit seems to sink a little lower. I am trying to stay positive, but my energy is draining fast. Why is it that when we have little to do, we feel the most tired? Depression is a strange and crippling thing.

Continue reading

Advertisements

The Loss of Another Medical Caregiver – How Long Will This Go On?

Unless one says goodbye to what one loves, and unless one travels to completely new territories, one can expect merely a long wearing away of oneself and an eventual extinction. - Jean Dubuffet

Unless one says goodbye to what one loves, and unless one travels to completely new territories, one can expect merely a long wearing away of oneself and an eventual extinction. – Jean Dubuffet

A handwritten note on top of my pillow was one the first thing that greeted my arrival to my own bed. It read “Sad news – [my dietitian’s name] is leaving.” My heart plunged as I realized the reason she had not responded to my emailed questions for the past few weeks.

That is it. She is gone without a goodbye or explanation. This feels like deja vu. Just last summer, my previous dietitian (who was an Olympic athlete that I greatly admired and enjoyed) left. Thankfully she gave me a bit of warning. However, my doctor left last minute too last May. All of this loss adds to my misery over leaving Oxford and my friends there as well as being estranged (but maybe willing to return to) my therapist and still suffering from heartbreak. Why do people have to keep leaving after being so close to me?

Continue reading

Ten Things Not to Say to Someone with Generalized Anxiety Disorder

Ten Things Not to Say to Someone with Generalize Anxiety Disorder

Ten Things Not to Say to Someone with Generalize Anxiety Disorder

Anxiety – it sounds like such a harmless thing. After all, everyone has this emotion. It keeps us safe by warning us of dangerous situations, gives us energy to complete a difficult task, and reminds us why we should not do risky things. Without anxiety, people would be carefree but injured more often and worse at analyzing situations.

Yet, people who have generalized anxiety disorder (or any other type of anxiety) are crippled by thoughts, worries, and sometimes behaviors. Instead of keeping them safe, anxiety makes their lives miserable. Generalized anxiety disorder might sound easy compared to other mental illnesses or even other types of anxiety. For years, I wanted a different anxiety disorder because this one was just so stupid. I should be able to recover from something so simple, right? However, constantly living in the state of fear and being hyper-vigilant drains you quickly.

Continue reading

Returning to My Residential Eating Disorder Treament Center

After over two years, I am sitting in the sunlight surrounded by the orange and green building. The older maintenance man walks past, reminding me of giggling over his younger co-worker with the other girls. However, the doors are locked, keeping me out instead of holding me in. The therapists grin kindly without recognizing me as a pioneer, one of the first people to stay in this building.

I have returned to where I lived three months for residential care for my eating disorder.

Continue reading

Ten Things Not to Say to Someone with Aspergers

Ten Things Not to Say to Someone with Aspergers

Ten Things Not to Say to Someone with Aspergers

Whenever I explain that have Aspergers to someone, they look at me with surprise. “Really? But you seem so normal,” most people remark. All I can do is smile awkwardly and mumble something that thanks them for the compliment. However, that “compliment” really feels like a slap in the face. Anyone who did not watch me grow up missed the anguishing years of never fitting in, being bullied by friends, and not knowing how to do simple tasks. Just because I appear normal now does not mean that Aspergers did not affect my life and continues to daily.

Autism awareness has increased in recent years. Because of this, people are much more understanding and ask less unhelpful questions. However, misinformation and stereotypes still continue. Some of the comments that people say to me about my Aspergers or about the disorder in general are extremely rude, hurtful, and bewildering. This stems from lack of education, usually, and not ill intent.

Thus, I decided to make up a list of ten of the main things you should not say to someone with Aspergers. These are comments that I have heard and had to answer. Please know that you are not a bad person if you ever said any of these things. Like mentioned above, most of these comments come from misinformation or lack of knowledge. Some of these comments even come from good intentions but end up hurting your friend or family member with Aspergers.

Continue reading