Aspergers Syndrome

Destiny…

I am the aunt of an incredible little girl… okay okay… she is a teenager and she will always be a little girl in brain… even though she is as tall as I am… get over it.  She really is her mother’s destiny.  Bless her beautiful person-hood… she is a wonderful girl.

A lot of people can’t get far enough through the Destiny-ness to learn just how wonderful she is.  She can be loud.  She is very direct… very direct.  She lives in a very black and white world (although, her world is very colorful) if you get what I mean.  She knows things… good heavens that child knows more about more things than I could ever hope to keep from leaking out of my brain.  We had the most animated discussion on capybara while we were home for Thanksgiving.  I think I surprised her by having seen one live (or mostly live… it was dying from rabies at the time).  Don’t know what they are?  Look them up.  They are fascinating creatures… they irritate the crap out of Bichons.

She has her idiosyncrasies (but, lord, don’t we all).  People, I know, have to make fun of her because some of hers are a bit visible.  I wish more people could get past the painfully obvious and take a chance on getting to know her.  She is one awesome chick.

I found out that they have finally been able to put a label on what she “has”.  Anyone who has stuck around nearby me for any length of time and not run screaming from the room knows that I am not a big fan of labels.   Yeah, I know… big shock, isn’t it.  But sometimes, a well placed label can make you stop… think… and go… OH… okay, I get it… And it can help you to stop, and think, the next time you are dealing with someone with a similar label (or the same person if you are lucky enough to have one in your life…) and take just a few extra minutes to help them to fit better in their own world.

What have I learned about what Destiny’s world is like?  The following is a really interesting analogy (maybe because I am a cube dweller) on what life is like in Des’s brain…  compared to a “normal” brain.  The website it’s from (Hover over the title) is Weird not Stupid

What is Asperger’s Syndrome?

 

In order to better understand Aspergers Syndrome, an analogy can be used. Imagine an office containing several cubicles and a hallway down the centre. This represents the two hemispheres of the brain. In the majority of the population, information flows freely between the cubicles on either side of each other as well as with the cubicles on the other side of the hall (exchanging of information from the left side of the brain to the right side and vise versa). In this scenario, each cubicle has a working computer, fax machine, telephone, filing cabinet and bulletin board as well as the ability for each worker to step into another cubicle to talk to a co-worker. That is how information flows in most people’s brains.

In someone with Non-verbal Learning Disorder or Asperger’s, and in some cases of Autism, the office is there, all the workers are there and the information is there as well. The difference is that some of the cubicles don’t have phones, but have fax machines instead. Some of them don’t have e-mail, but have information on that computer. Some of them can only fax their information, which is on paper in a filing cabinet that is not in alphabetical order, but rather in chronological order. 35% of them have boxes stacked up in front of their cubicles, so they can’t get out. That means not only does it take longer to find information, but it also takes longer to compile it, process it and transfer it to the place that it is needed. Add to that the fact that each person has more than one boss, giving them different objectives. If you worked in an office like that, you would dread going to work everyday. That’s why it’s important for us to change some of the things we do to make it more bearable for someone with Asperger’s.

 

Also on this website is a bunch of characteristics of someone with Asperger’s… again… it made me go OH… okay…

Now… my next goal (Wait for it… wait for it… here comes another flag to have in the air) is to start writing letters to this precious person so I can be as much in her life as I possibly can.

Happy Sunday

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