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Friday, November 21, 2014

Are you Normal Yet?

Rainbow Frog
I have frequently heard others say that I am different, weird, awesome, unusual, quirky, interesting, even an alien, etc. At times, I have resented their labels and at other times agreed.
As a child, I always saw things differently.  I read voraciously as a kid because it helped me to stay in this world. My imagination was so much bigger than what I was experiencing in front of me.

The books helped me to bridge the two worlds. Every week, I would walk by myself  to the public library on Avenue J in  Brooklyn and I would return carrying 10 books. They were always fiction books since they were so much more satisfying than non fiction.  They helped  my imagination to grow even stronger.

I must admit that I often wanted to be normal and be like other kids. I thought that having this intense imagination was a handicap. There was nobody that understood it as a child and  thankfully it has gotten better with time. As a young adult,  I saw a psychoanalyst/ Rabbi named Dr. Brill. He did not understand my imagination...  As a result, I have tried hard to work with people that are differently minded so that they can feel part of the world and not have to be in the world.  That is really what I wanted someone to do for me as a child and adolescent.

This morning I listened to this Ted Talk by a beautiful young woman named Rosie King, she articulated how important it is to embrace how different we are and throw out our ridiculous fascination with being normal. It is truly a  passion destroyer. Please check out her 8 minute talk.  How Autism freed me to be myself?

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