Posts

Not a puzzle piece

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Dearest readers, 
I had this idea I had earlier in the week whilst chasing up various people on emails; it's been a hectic week on emails and I am looking forward to not having to be glued to my outlook account over the next week. I'm going to end up with trigger finger at this rate! I'm also relieved the auto-correct on my outlook on my phone has not failed like on other pieces of software I have, as anyone who knows when I Facebook message or WhatsApp, they have a good time trying to decode what the message might be! I've even tried recalibrating my phone, I'm just rubbish at hitting the correct keys. The thought that came to my mind is highly linked to the quote, not from myself, but from e. e. cummings. It's a quote I've had saved on my personal social media for some time. I must have been the quote for the first time sometime between 2010 and 2012.


It always struck me as a musing that was very relevant to me: for many years I had felt threatened by pe…

Home and freedom

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Dearest readers, 
Long time no update. After finding some new inspiration, having some rest and focusing on my work I think I may be ready to blog again. I had this idea a while back after having a conversation about where home may be with one of my friends. I'm not very good at being overly reflective on the spot and if I'm quite honest, I can't even remember what I said. But later that day, I remembered: home is not here. I've had this sense that my home is not here for a while now. Home for me isn't a geographic location, a preferred place, the place I grew up (although actually it is, but that's not the tangent I'm going down). 
A fine description of where I find home can be found below in this excerpt below, not my writing but very aptly and succinctly demonstrates what exactly I'm on about: 

I've had this sense for some while, realising after watching my life literally fall to pieces in front of me and had the dreams I used to have torn from m…

Learning to take a break

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Dearest readers, 
Sometimes things slip out of importance and your priorities shift. Over the last month, mine certainly have, and this blog has not been even registering to me as a priority. For something that used to be relaxing to type into, it became stressful. I'm generally better with people face to face and I started to find emails, websites and social media extremely anxiety provoking. People confused me - I thought everyone was going to shout and scream at me (this has been a lifelong fear/issue I am dealing with) and not knowing if I would be to blame, or how to know if I was. I had a lot on my plate too with lots of very recent changes: cars, churches, routines, pets, deadlines... Uni work came number 1, paid work came number 2 and many other things dropped by the wayside and this was the first thing to go. Both these combined meant for one thing: rest. Words don't do justice to what I was experiencing inside. 
One of my friends took the above photo on a day out we…

When the door opens

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Dearest readers, 
A rather late reflection on a workshop I ran in another Methodist Church last week. I had been invited back in April along with the minister I work with and given church schedules, churches taking "the summer off" (yes this does happen... yet Jesus didn't take a summer holiday! I'll leave that debate for another day) and our busy schedules and my deadlines, it wasn't until last weekend that we all met properly. I normally wear my analysis hat as soon as I walk into any church building and set up, examining internally the lay out, escape routes, use of space, how people interact with each other, the sensory impact of a room are all mentally and internally critiqued. I have to say I do this most places I go now, so sorry not sorry about that. 
Other than a few IT glitches, this was by far the best and most facilitative workshop done so far. You know why? People listened, they had questions and most importantly, they not only spoke to me but they …

Our deepest fear

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Dearest readers, 
I hope this post find you well. After a day of reading and studying, I remembered something that was shared with me about a week ago from a film. I've never seen the film Coach Carter, but giving the biographical nature of it, I think I would enjoy it. I quite like things based on real life, documentaries and documentary style approaches. The quote linked here is the original poem that the quote from the film is based on. This is a beautiful piece of poetry and I have named this post after the poem. I also enclose this photo of a swan I took yesterday - I've never had a swan pose like this so close to me. Usually the only thing they are after is food!

"Your playing small does not serve the world"
Putting myself down only hurts me and effectively masks, covers up who I really am. It does not fulfil the talents and strengths that I have, it does not allow for them to be used to the best of their capacity. We all have something important to show or giv…

Why have you got worse?

perceptions of getting worse and becoming more "autistic" versus sticking up for yourself and having a voice
Dearest readers, 
I hope you are well. I have just had the above question posed to me: you never used to be this literal. Made me think, after I had been slightly confused and put said person in the position where it was their perspective and not necessarily reality: we are still so glued to what is right, what is correct, what is "well", what is sociable, what is normative. We comment on what we see, as x-ray vision is sadly (yet also fortunately) yet to give us the ability to read other's states and minds. It's almost like someone was telling me I have got "worse" and should therefore "improve" and that I am not doing well enough the way I am. How false and assumptive that being non-autistic is better. 
It is comments like the above which can be so damaging to some of us: I can see exactly how this can trigger internal confusion…

Hearing but not listening

Dearest readers, 
I hope this finds you well and October is rolling out well so far. After a slightly bumpy start to October (or since my birthday) where anxiety has decided it'd like to come to play and a few unexpected decisions that I wasn't expecting to make so soon, I'm settling back into my research and getting into a new routine with work with the various jobs I have. September and October are always slightly harder to navigate as a newer routine is so suddenly imposed upon me with little time to graduate into it, but all is good fun and it does eventually settle down. I purposely don't take much in the way of breaks and holidays as I find it quite hard with the change. It also means my brain stays engaged and active too - I guess in part because I really enjoy what I do it doesn't feel like work really. 
I was chatting with a friend who provided the inspiration for this piece. It surrounds acknowledgement and understanding of experiences we cannot see. It&…

Beauty in the darkness - something personal

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Dearest readers,

Rather than being inspired by a word or phrase today, usually resulting in a title, I have been inspired by a photo, below:

I haven't looked through this album in many years, as I had a very dark time when I lived in Grenoble and for many years well, until I started my new course of study) I carried many regrets of what I didn't do, what I could have done, what I should have done. Funnily enough, it is my extended visit to Grenoble which starts off my journey I am currently on regarding autism and also my journey with Jesus. It was after my return I became angry with injustice, confused as to why I could not cope like others (although it had been bubbling up for a while) and thirsty to help and teach. It took me a while to reorientate towards a less aggression based angle where I was not only hurting myself less and not burning myself out beating myself up not only for failing one of my dreams since I was 12 (living in France, I felt like my dream had been cru…

"We just didn't notice"

Dearest readers, 
Second post in 24 hrs after two weeks off signals I'm back at the computer again and that the brain is whizzing, and more importantly, more discussion has been had. I lead a very interesting session at the church where I have been helping with youth work for the past 18 months and where the minister I currently work with is based. It was for youth volunteers. I has struck me over the last year how little good information there is for churches and faith based groups and organisations, and how everything normally stays very localised and "owned" by certain circuits, areas and dioceses. This to me is quite odd and seems to go in the face of "spreading the word", but then again I'm not a business person nor a committee member so a lot of the politics concerning this go over the top of my head. As far as I am concerned, this is my work and God is using it. I don't want it to be owned by one sort of church for the current moment, for it is …

Don't shut me out

Dearest readers,
This phrase has just come to my head. An inspiration out of nowhere. I think it's something that needs to be considered and something that needs to be put into account in terms of what we do. I can take many angles here: you can look at this theologically, you can look at this sociologically, you can look at this in larger and smaller environments... it can work anywhere and everywhere. There is no way around it.
How does this relate to me and what I do though? It relates through a struggle to see how important some things are by others who do not sit in my seat and see things from my perspective and do not see how important they are. Through sidelining, gas-lighting and not listening and most importantly, a lack of true communication. I'm going to refer to this from a theological perspective, as that is where my passion lies and I have to admit: my patience with faith institutions, particularly church, has grown dangerously thin over the last 2-3 months sadl…