Reflections: Being Accomplished

Somedays, it is hard to think about how much I have accomplished in my life and how far I have come on the journey of being an autistic person. If you had asked me nearly 20 years ago if I would have been where I was today, I would have laughed in your face and would have thought about just getting through life without a public meltdown.

I have definitely grown a lot since two decades ago. It can be hard to imagine that back then it was hard to even pick up the phone and talk to someone or even have a conversation with a peer. It was harder to see a person rather than talk to them, yet either was still daunting. It was through continued work experiences and eventually landing in my current job that stated to pave the way to me opening up socially. 

Over 13 years ago when I took on a new job that was initially supposed to be temporary, however, for reasons beyond my control, I seemed to be a good fit, even though I doubted that greatly. It took alot just to show up and do the job and I am forever grateful for my employer for having the continued patience with me throughout the duration of my employment to retain me. There has been a few instances that I could have been dismissed, but they continue to focus on the positive in me when at times I could not. I have to be truly grateful for that.

It can be hard to imagine that I do the things beside work such as function in the community or live independently, something a decade ago that seemed silly to me, like it was something that was not in the cards for me. I never thought that I could live on my own and while I had some flaws down the road, I have never given up on the opportunities to make things better and follow the right path, because I know it is what keeps my independence and to stay well.

Sometimes, I do not look at things from the big picture either before coming of age over two decades ago when words like institution, placement and hospitalization were frequent terms in the vocabulary of my life. My adolescence was not the greatest and had a host of barriers, traumas and unknowns, yet I persevered through the thickness of it all when sometimes it took alot to get just through a day without facing passive restraint or some other kind of tragic outcome that was unpleasant.

The reality is that I overcame all that I faced when the doubters said that I couldn’t, it was both of my parents who were fierce fighters when the odds were against me that continued to see the potential and need for me to have opportunities in things when others had reservations about me undertaking them. I excelled at them and had a nice outcome about them. Yes, there are things I regret that I had not had been as transparent about then as I am now, but that was a different time and I feel that a higher power was telling me that I just wasn’t ready for that arena at that time.

Regardless, I must live in the here and now, focusing on moving my life forward by doing the things that I know that are beneficial in my life, even if I may have flawed thoughts from time to time, I am starting to realize the benefits when I do things that help me be well in life and I can be quite the asset when doing so. Life’s been good to me so far, therefore I must continue to do what is right to keep things in check, even though at times I feel that I do not want to by being childish, there are things I know that I can do and they are simple, I just need to grow up and be thankful for being as accomplished as I am.

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