prompts, cues, questions

So I have this thing about words and prose and fluency.

An example: whenever I am sick enough that I’m forced to go to a doctor’s office, I’ve found it incredibly helpful to bring someone else with me. Not because I won’t be able to talk at all, but because when people ask me broad questions (like “Why are you here?” or “What’s wrong?”) I am often unable to answer spontaneously. But if someone else attempts to answer in my stead, or gives me possible answer options to choose, I’m able to say how that answer is either correct or incorrect. So like, I’ll go to the doctor with a friend, and when I’m unable to answer, my friend will be like “Uhm, well, she’s been having a stomachache, and has had a fever for uhm…-” and at that point my verbally hyper-precise self will jump in like, “Actually I’ve been feeling like I was going to throw up, not hurting, and my fever doesn’t look like a fever unless you know that my normal body temperature is one degree below normal and…” Et cetera.

The point of this post is that even though I love to write and am very articulate, I really, really struggle to produce spontaneous writing/speech without a cue, prompt, or specific question that I can respond to. It’s why when I comment on blogs, I tend to produce three-paragraph long comments; given something substantial to prompt me, I can talk for ages.

So since I know that lots of people (parents, teachers, other autistic people in search of fellow weirdos, etc.) have lots of questions and ideas that they want someone to write about (or just answer), I thought I’d ask people to either comment on this, or email me with their questions and ideas and I’ll write about those things! The email address I made for this blog is on the About page, if you’re looking.

I await with bated breath, folks.

P.S. I fought the urge to cheekily subtitle this “why autistic people make great theatre technicians.” Because I mean really. But it was both kind of an inside joke, and totes irrelevant. So it’s a P.S.

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I am like five and I am sitting on a bench with a great-aunt, who has her arm around me. I am wearing a dress with roses on it that has poofy short sleeves (it was my Favorite Dress (TM) of the moment). I’m smiling, but instead of looking at the camera, I am sitting with my knees to my chest, with both hands holding on to my sandals, and staring at my feet. I may or may not have titled this .jpg file “Peak Cute” on my desktop. Because, I mean…really. 

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7 thoughts on “prompts, cues, questions

  1. It’s the back-and-forth of blog posts and comments that seems to spawn the most blog ideas for myself, as well. Reading things written by others tends to inspire me. Coming up with subjects out of the blue is much harder.

    • Yeah, I think that it’ll probably be easier over time. I just hate that feeling of knowing that you have things inside that you want to share, and people who want to hear them, and being unable to find those things and get them out to others without extra help.
      People I know will be like “Oh, just talk about whatever! Say what you feel like.” And I’m like “Well, what I feel like saying is the word ‘banana-phone’ over and over again. But I don’t think that’s what you had in mind?” 🙂

  2. HI Emma! I love your blog so much! Thank you for sharing your inner world with us. My 3 year old daughter was just diagnosed with ASD, and I was wondering whether you could speak to your childhood. I’d love to hear more about you when you were a kid. And I’d also love to hear your thoughts on any interventions you received. Were they helpful/unhelpful? Necessary/unnecessary? Really, anywhere you take me is where I want to go. 🙂

  3. I was loving this until you mentioned “other weirdos” and that hurt badly because that is a fear I have that my 2 1/2 yr old grandson who was diagnosed on the spectrum might someday be called that…please do not think of yourself as weird. Thanks for listening to me…it was such a “gut reaction”. Grace

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    • Grace-
      I’m very sorry that you were hurt by my calling myself “weird”; I want to emphasize that I don’t consider “weird” a negative term. I totally understand your worry that someday your grandson will be teased by others for who he is, and that they might call him a “weirdo” in a hurtful way. To me, weird means unusual or different, and I’d definitely consider myself to be unusual and different. So while I totally respect your “gut reaction” to my use of the word, I can’t promise to not call myself weird; I find that it’s very difficult to like myself when I’m afraid of not seeming normal.
      🙂
      -Emma

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