During my life I have suffered and jumped many hurdles, from suicide to being put in the mental hospital, I was picked on for being ‘different’. I’d like to think everybody could relate to being, ‘labelled’, ‘pegged’ and simply because of the way they are.
One day, I thought, ‘Why not make that change within myself?’ and then it became a motto. A good day can ‘motivate’ me and ‘coach’ me into becoming ultimately able to ‘stay on top of life’. This means not going back, into ‘bad’ ways, like slacking off and allowing myself to be hurt by emotions and feelings of inadequacy. All that stigma I allowed myself to be defined by, I am freed from. On a good day I feel completely calm and able to take on the world I feel able to connect with people and that I can perform just as well as anyone else.
A real eye opener, my idea of the stressful big-city life mural, I saw.
The last really good day I had was at my friend Adnan’s a week or so ago. The sun was shining, I had confidence to tell right from wrong and I had a positive attitude in the sense that I could defeat whatever was wrong with me. At first I thought I’ll have to spend the whole day trying to fight my voices, but then I decided to go for a long walk in Arnos Park near my house. While I was walking, I suddenly came to the realisation at that moment that I could think for myself without the voices intervening. Another thing that came to my mind was that I felt lucky about my ability to communicate clearly to my friend Adnan about my troubled past. He was able to understand that part of me, which others don’t understand. On that day I discovered the importance of physical exercise I’d done in Arnos Park and the fact that my friend understood what I was trying to express about myself. All of these factors made it a fantastic day!
On a bad day however, I’ve experienced having to talk out loud with my emotions, quite literally-I get voices in my head and all those little people are talking to me, all sorts telling me how bad and worthless I am. However, I can also hear my inner voice telling me that I can sort out my problems: how to stay on top of life, university, work and keeping stable. All of these difficulties can be very challenging.
Sometimes I can be misunderstood in how I communicate. What I say when I feel something is true in my head but is not the reality for the person I’m talking to. I do have to rethink ways of making myself better understood in order to be true to myself and everyone around me. This could relate to a combination of my Asperger’s and mental health issues. So it is very difficult to separate the two conditions I have. Therefore, I don’t try to separate them but work with them as one entity. Consequently, when the voices are unavoidable and I can’t ignore them in a public setting e.g. social situation, in class, at work, I try and go to a quiet area and resolve the problem by talking to the voices out loud. So I have to explain to people that this is how I deal with my voices when they’re unavoidable. After a few minutes I’m able to re-connect with the outside world and carry on with whatever I was doing. This makes me feel confident about my ability to overcome whatever difficulties I face.
Emotions were a really bad, black hole for me.
Surely not staying stable with my emotions, giving off the wrong messages can be a bad thing. However, remembering that I believe in myself and understand what makes me negative and depressed helps me accept myself and learn how to tackle challenges that keep coming. Remembering what makes me smile is what motivates me.
Talking out loud in public through all the voices that entered my head became an old record that would replay itself over and over again. Sometimes on a bad day, I thought I wouldn’t get back my vision because my eyes would roll upwards. Therefore, I would have trouble with daily mobility and visual tasks when I’m out in public. I saw it as those people’s voices in my head who tried to invade my senses wanted the worst for me. Sometimes, I’d speak what was in my head out loud, sometimes I’d feel especially weak, almost like the battle was lost and I couldn’t express myself. But with the right support of friends and family, I was able to cope and eventually find myself.
Me in Tangier, Morocco having lunch and taking on the world.
My best friend, sees me as considerate, caring, slightly troubled however, more positive than before. My parents see me as creative and inspirational. I see myself, as a motivated, courageous, inspired and able to face the world. I also see myself as someone who’s had to face a lot of personal obstacles, e.g. feeling different from other people, being bullied, having a mental breakdown leading to mental health issues, being diagnosed with aspergers and having difficulty with not feeling accepted by other people my age.
Me in the countryside, Sidcup, having a good day.
To make my life easier people should remember, perhaps to be understanding of my condition, most of all and the fact that I have some good days and bad days. I feel I should be given the opportunity to prove myself by giving me a second chance. People should let me know that they believe in me, have confidence in me and give me praise for the good things that I do. Constructive criticism is always a good thing as long as it’s not confrontational and in ways to improve and persuasive. Another good way of helping me is by staying calm and collected when talking to me. By encouraging me and remaining calm helps me control my paranoia. The best way for me to understand and follow instructions correctly is to break them down into bullet points and to give them to me both orally and in writing.