As much as I like to think that I’ve improved in leaps and bounds when it comes to overcoming the idiosyncrasies that come with having Asperger Syndrome, there are still things that affect me greatly. I still become frustrated with things that wouldn’t frustrate most people. I still become overwhelmed by things that most people would not be overwhelmed with.
Within my first two weeks of doing high school work with an online program, I had finished a year of Algebra 1 and the first semester of Business and Marketing Skills. I walked into the classroom and sat at the same computer and did my work, every day. That is, until I walked into the classroom to see a student sitting at the computer that I had been using. It really bothered me. I had work on that computer that I needed to finish to move on to the next lesson, and she was using my computer. Okay, so it’s not actually my computer, but it still bothered me. I asked if she wouldn’t mind if I used the computer again after she was done with the lesson that she was working on, but she said that she had work on that computer and needed to use it. I sat at a different computer and started the assignment over again. I can understand why she insisted on using that specific computer, since she had work that she needed on it. Yet, I still sat there, frustrated, wondering why it was bothering me so much. It’s because I have difficulty with changes in my routine. I was able to handle it in a mature way, but it made me rethink things, seeing that it extremely frustrated me that I had to use a different computer. In retrospect, it’s not that big of a deal. I’ve adjusted to the new computer, and I’ve continued to speedily finish classes.
This week, there was a day where it seemed that just about all of my friends were having some issue or another. Of course, them being my friends, I was concerned for them and I wanted to help. My attempts to be a good, understanding friend were met with irritation. I can understand why, and I’m not angry or hurt by their irritation with me. When I’m stressed or dealing with something, I most definitely want to be left alone with the exception of a few people that are close to me. And anyone that crosses my path in the wrong way is almost sure to meet with an unpleasant response. It’s not like I don’t understand. I do. I just felt so overwhelmed by the irritation of just about everyone, and not being able to help. The extreme empathy that I felt made for a stressed out situation in which I half secluded myself or slinked away as soon as tensions rose. Frustration at not knowing what was going on and not being able to do anything to fix things made me overwhelmed and want to cry. Seeing as most of my friends were having issues, who could I take my concerns to? I just dealt with it through the day, and calmed myself when I went to my room. Public self-stimming is nothing compared to closing myself in my room and really calming down.
Even though no one can really tell, I’ve yet to escape some challenges brought on by having AS. Who knows, I may never completely escape them. How I react and deal with them is what really counts. It’s the same with anyone that has AS or HFA. You can’t control what happens to you, or even how it makes you feels sometimes, but you can always control how you react to it. And that’s what counts.