Am I Anyone without a Smile?

Some days, the smiles just don't want to come.

Some days, the smiles just don’t want to come.

From theater to Disney, my life has constantly been filled with places where I need to smile. I enjoy smiling. When I see others smiling, my heart feels lighter especially if I helped bring about their joy. I don’t mind keeping a smile on my face for hours on end when I see it positively influencing others.

However, I sometimes feel more like crying than smiling. Then, I realize that people think of me as someone who always smiles. Who would I be without my smile? This haunts me.

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Listaliciousness: Father’s Day, Women on Money, and Hidden Meaning in “Lilo and Stitch”

Family upon couch

My family

Happy Father’s Day! I miss my father so much on this special day. At least, we talked on the phone which was wonderful.

Anyway, here are some links. A few are Father’s Day themed while others deal with history, coping skills, and Disney of course. Enjoy!

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Ten Reasons I See Myself As Better and Worse Than Others

Me at Goodwill

We have reasons why we are better/worse humans even if we do not realize them.

At my university’s chapel yesterday, the speaker gave an amazingly candid and thought-provoking exercise for us to do. “List the reasons why you think that you are a better person or Christian than others. Then list the reasons why you are worse.”

Even more shockingly, he went on to list some of his reasons. I similarly made lists in my notebook. Looking back at the items was a strong jolt of reality for me. Pride and superiority is a far bigger issue in my life than I ever realized. In fact, all of us seem to battle this more than we want to admit even if it is hidden in the guise of self-hate.

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I Am the Character

Books from OxfordLiterature was the first place where I began to identify with characters. That and movies. Suddenly, other women and girls who I admired were set in front of me. They became role models, whether they were supposed to be or not.

Theater was the next place where I was introduced to characters that I wanted to be. Her voice, her style, her life – they all were more appealing than mine. As I portrayed more females, I felt myself change.

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Social Observations From an Aspie: What Makes Guys Uncomfortable 1

Boys in The Yellow Boat

Most of the boys who were in The Yellow Boat with me last spring

As someone with Aspergers, I tend to struggle to read social situations. People chuckle and shake their heads when sarcasm goes over my head and I respond literally to questions asked. At least that means they are enjoying my confusion. In the past (and still sometimes now), people might have scolded me or been exasperated. Now, most just see me as quirky and literal.

The other day, however, a new idea came to me: what if my way of reading people actually was useful or interesting to others? Sure, I am not always perfectly accurate. Yet, my view on social situations is unique. Sometimes I walk into a room and am bogged down by the emotions. Do I understand them? No, but I certainly feel what others are going through at the time. Even when someone says something and I misunderstand it, the situation is fascinating to analyze.

Thus, I am planning to do some posts from now on about how I understand people and social situations. Maybe you will find them helpful, relatable, or simply amusing. Theses posts are meant to give you a little look into my Aspie mind. Please know, however, that I do not speak for everyone with Aspergers or Autism. These are simply musings from my own experiences.

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Being Comfortable in Our Own Skin

How many people can admit to being comfortable with their appearance? Oddly enough, those who are sometimes are criticized as being vain or deluded. Why is it that characters in movies and books who are confident in their appearance are Gaston in Beauty and the Beast or the self-consumed mean girl?

This video brought tears to my eyes. The truth of it hit me really hard. As we grow up, we listen to what other people say about our bodies and take those cruel comments as truths. Instead of seeing our bright green eyes, we focus on our freckles. The lumpy shape of our calves blinds us to the dimples on our cheeks. Our rosy blush is seen as awkward instead of charming.

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Listaliciousness: Motivational Mirrors, Celebrity Response to Me, and Top 10 Lists

So far, my fall break has not been very relaxing. However, I am hopeful that I can find peace and rest even in the business.

I would love feedback on some of these links. They might be a be a bit controversial, and it would be great to discuss them if you have any thoughts.

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Being “Loved” Not “Liked”

Chinchilla

Sometimes I feel like this little chinchilla – in need of friendship.

“I love you, Anna Rose.”

Someone said that to me today, and memories flooded back to me. For years, people in theater or other places said this. Although the words were kind, something about that phrase always troubled me. Finally I realized. No one said that to other people. It was a way of stating, “You are different and strange. We are not sure what to do about you, but that is not exactly a bad thing.”

Love was something that set me apart from my peers. Everyone else went to haunted houses, but I was too sensitive to be invited. Others joked crudely with others before biting their tongues when I entered the room. Even some of my dearest friends still treat me differently.

I am loved but not always liked.

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Listaliciousness: Waving Whales, Seeking Help, and World Vegetarian Day

Princess

My cat, Princess, ran right up to me the moment that my car drove up yesterday.

This weekend has been both too long and too short. Sweet moments at my job slipped away as did the few hours that I spent with my family on Saturday evening into Sunday morning. Meanwhile, the hours on end without an breaks on my feet running about dragging on for ions (or so it seemed).

Today, I stood up to myself at work. Someone above me scolded me for drinking some vitamin water on the job because we are no longer allowed to use big glasses. The small ones are disposable and not big enough for what I am supposed to drink during the day. Having liquid is a challenge already. When I was reprimanded, my first instinct was to apologize and beat myself up over breaking a rule. Instead, I looked him in the eye and said, “I need this for medical reasons.” Although a bit taken aback, he said that was alright then and left. Thinking back makes me wonder if I should have just nodded and listened or pushed back a bit. I am not sure.

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