This year I decided to stop hoping and visualizing and working on raising my vibration and any number of spirit-raising techniques to manifest things, and instead, simply work for what I want. To that end, I crunched the numbers to figure out what I need by year’s end to afford where I want to be, and started 2019 with a goal of working more than the 60 hours a week I have most of my adult life. Thought I’d tap out at 70, but surprise, surprise, I’ve been maintaining 80 hours of transcribing a week the past month combining freelance jobs.
Most of my days are, wake up, make coffee and breakfast, sit down to type until noon, make lunch, type until dinner, make dinner, go for a walk, type until anywhere between 10 pm to 12 pm.
I have to watch myself, because I don’t know how many of you have tried to type for 80 hours a week at all or for very long, but the short of it is, it’s not good for the human body. Feet and legs swell, weight is gained without overeating, basically blood stops moving to anywhere but the moving fingers. To that end, I have set up 3 hours twice monthly as part of a volunteer trail maintenance crew for local land I love … 6 hours each month of being more human than machine, thriving in the woods where I’ve always felt most nurtured. And one day a week working in the food bank garden.
Coming to terms with my “disability” on autism spectrum has made me want to simultaneously embrace and accept a new understanding of my identity because everything makes sense now, and wholeheartedly reject it as any kind of disability. It’s just neurosensory difference.
I stare at the long intake form for autism spectrum diagnosis at a reputable center and feel nothing but complete overwhelm contemplating documenting five decades of information about my behavior, so I am still on the fence about pursuing an official diagnosis with days of interviews and neuropsych testing. I won’t qualify for disability if I can work 80 hours a week, and the only benefit I see is having someone else confirm a diagnosis I already believe I fit, and qualifying for some support groups I might not otherwise.
Fitting for International Women’s Day, if medical and scientific research included women more often through time, many women would not have to suffer in dark with any number of health concerns from cardiac disease to autism because women present differently than men. Here’s a great glimpse of power of diagnosis from one young woman who was diagnosed at the age I wish I had been – my early 20s. When I fell apart after my freshman year in college, greater understanding could have altered the trajectory of my life.
If I don’t pursue an official diagnosis, I feel peace about my talents and ability to focus as a primary web of light that will be my legacy I leave behind when I am no longer here on Earth. And of course my daughter, but as emotional and proud as I feel about her and as close as I’ll probably ever feel to any human being, I try to leave her out of this blog as much as possible.
All the rest of it, easily falling prey to manipulative relationships, the financial struggles, the job struggles, the constant search for stable housing, countless therapists, being told to be on medication for life that did more nothing than help, the “disability” part, is how I understand autism spectrum makes it possible for a person to be in equal measure brilliant and dysfunctional, both able to complete education through some graduate school, write poetry, master a form of music, knit up complex lace, AND enter mid-50s without settling into any of the markers of late adulthood – partnership or housing or financial stability. It also makes me want to kiss the ground in gratitude for the kindness of folks that made the past 15 years of stable housing possible for me and my daughter.
The dream I am willing to type 80 hours a week to achieve: A small, lovely rental space I can live in on my own without financially requiring housemates (as I have nearly all my adult life) or marriage (I’d choose homelessness over marriage), funds to put my daughter’s belongings in storage or housing big enough to store them, and more freedom in my days to pursue solo creative and Earthbound pursuits I love.
Freak weather cycles experienced in much of the world now as “normal” – each of these pictures taken 24 hours apart.