Stalling

It’s morning here in the US.  And I’m stalling.  My motivation is in there somewhere; I can feel it.  I think it merely hit the Snooze button one extra time.

I’m counting down the last of my days before Project: Overhaul is launched, a tall-order effort to transform my physical–and probably mental–health.

I’ve done this before.  Living so many years as someone undiagnosed on the Asperger’s/autism spectrum, I’m fairly adept and seasoned at reinventing myself.

In my younger years, I underwent these metamorphoses at my expense, to create a Likable, Acceptable Me.

This time, it’s different.  I’ll be inventing an incarnation of myself for my own benefit.  If others benefit, too, then that’s great.  But this time, that’s merely a happy side effect, not the main goal.

Today is a good day for contemplation.  Yesterday’s rain has moved on eastward.  The cars in the neighboring parking lot that I frequent during my times of need to be alone are encroaching on my personal space, but at least there aren’t too many.

I think about what lies ahead.  In another month, maybe two, or maybe three (it all depends on the agility and prowess of my executive function), I may not recognize my life.

And that’s OK.  I sort of reincarnate myself, birthing a new self without dying in between.  It’s a useful skill.  I now understand that it’s one of the gifts of my autism.

There’s a concept spoken of by a few autistic people out there–not very many, but enough to know that it’s a Thing: bridge-burning.

From what I’ve read, the bridge-burning concept is typically applied within the context of chucking one’s entire life as they currently know it and making drastic changes, such as leaving everything and everyone they know, moving across the world, pursuing another career field, a new life, even a new identity.  Sometimes this even includes a legal name change; other times, it doesn’t.

My journey may not be so outwardly obvious.  I’m not physically going anywhere.  I’m not changing careers or leaving my partner.  

The bridges I burn will be largely internal.

My friends and family need not be concerned.  The same applies to the Asperger’s/autism spectrum community and lovely readers of the blogs I write.

The changes may be more subtle, especially to the casual or intermediate observer.

I don’t know yet what form this transformation may take.  I can’t yet see its face; I wouldn’t yet be able to give a description.

But I feel its presence, waiting in the shadows, just around the corner, in the blue sky just behind a cloud.  It whispers to me in the wind.  It makes its presence known, unquestionably.

My brain and body have been sagging for three years now.  I think my body is sad.  My brain convinces me it’s OK.  I don’t know whether or not to believe it.  It has bullshitted me before.

I’m ready to shed the weight, both the invisible weight on my brain and spirit, and the visible weight that makes me grunt just a little with physical movements that never elicited that effect before.

Well, maybe I’m not fully ready.  My brain is still working out the logistics, happy to play devil’s advocate along the way, reluctantly devising alternatives to the inevitable temptations, lest I step on a trap.

My to-do list–and my recent enthusiasm for it–will likely serve as a life-jacket and an anchor at the same time, both of which will be welcome, and indeed necessary.

My executive function process is currently working diligently to try to identify the weak points, at which the hopefully-reinforced walls could be breached.  I know that I must build those walls with stone, complete with No Trespassing signs directed at the temptations.

The first step is the prerequisite to all others.  

It’s also the hardest.

Irony.

I never thought it would come to this.  Or maybe I did; forgetfulness can be convenient.  Ignorance can be bliss, even if it’s killing you.  Temptations can be so inviting.  They can be too convincing.  But I have to remember that they’re deceiving.

At least I’m no longer ignorant.  I didn’t exactly have a choice; my issues can no longer be ignored.  It’s time to take a new path.  

There’s a fork in my road, but I’m going to need spoons.  Spoons are the rate-limiting step.  They’re the currency that will rapidly become much more prominent.  I hope I have enough.

Forks Over Knives, goes the documentary title.  But my case is Spoons Over Forks (in my road).  It’s like my own personal game of Rock-Paper-Scissors: Spoons-Forks-Knives.

I’m stalling on multiple fronts.  Stalling on getting started (kind of–my deadline is a mere eight days away, so I haven’t failed at this point; I’m still OK).  Stalling on beginning my work for the day.

Executive function.

It’s just that it’s so peaceful here, at least outwardly.  My internal world is anything but.  But that’s fine; it’s part of my process.  I’ve done this before, and I can–and will–do it again.

Here’s where black-and-white thinking can come in handy–I’ve left myself no choice but to launch Project: Overhaul.

My current plan is to chronicle this journey on my other blog, but some of it may inevitably spill over into this one.  I hope that’s OK.

I hope I’ll be OK.  I hope this works.  I hope I make it.

Spoons Over Forks and all that.

๐Ÿ™‚

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26 Comments

  1. i know this mostly a mental thing youre talking about, and im pro-exercise (as in when i do it *in moderation*, i feel great. most people overdo it. i think some are literally addicted to it, because it gives them a high they end up chasing until it becomes an obsession. but its impossible to exercise too much, right? no.) and its a great post in so many ways.

    but physically speaking, with “sagging” comes softness. warm, wonderful softness. women over 40 are the softest women in the world. even if most of them arent saggy at all. most women over 40 (many over 50) are pretty taut these days, relatively speaking. often even the curvy ones work to keep “fit” for that body type.

    its definitely good to not spend 100% of your time relaxing, though. physical and philosophical activity are necessary for leading a full life at any stage.

    someone (very possibly you, also possibly anna) wrote a great post called something like “non-autistic people do that too.” and it stressed that its “not the same thing.” i agree! but also, i really *do* think non-austisic people do that too. (as in most things that austistic people do.) it just isnt the same thing. we grow, but we grow differently. we adjust, but we adjust differently. we find ourselves no longer fitting with our old way of life, but we find it differently. and we reinvent ourselves– but we do it differently.

    this is another one of those posts where i thought it was just me. and i might have thought so forever, if you hadnt said it โค

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Thank you for sharing your thoughts, luv ๐Ÿ˜˜๐Ÿ’–. Actually you’re more spot-on than you may know – it’s more of a physical thing, and yep, exercise is definitely a necessary change for me. I’ve been too sedentary for too long. Yep, agreed with all you said about reinventing; all of it hit home, in a good way ๐Ÿ˜˜๐Ÿ’œ๐Ÿ’“

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Woot! Sporks are more utilitarian anyway. I like the way you think! ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿผ. Thank you so much for the cheers ๐Ÿ˜˜. Cheers back atcha! ๐Ÿ’๐Ÿ’œ๐Ÿ’“

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m trying to get myself motivated to start walking again. I remember how much better I felt when I was getting exercise๐Ÿ’ช. Plus when I’d get frustrated I’d take a couple laps around the block and “angry walk”. Motivation is in short supply ๐Ÿ˜•

        Liked by 2 people

        1. I hear you, luv ๐Ÿ˜˜๐Ÿ˜˜. You will, in time. You’re not the type to sit still if you can help it ๐Ÿ’–. So glad you’re listening to your body; I hope you feel a lot better soon! The block will wait patiently for you to walk around it again when the time is right ๐Ÿ˜˜๐Ÿ’–๐ŸŒบ

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  2. Oh I hear ya! I am finding spoons so dictate what I can do. My energy has dropped off a cliff this last year and it is a concern but I think if I gradually extend my activity it might improve. The bridge burning, yes. This is a thing. Oh yes. Good luck my dear! I’m rooting for you! X

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you luv!! ๐Ÿ˜˜โค๏ธ

      I think you’re right about your energy. I remember hearing in a class about how if we’re too inactive (like I’ve become), then our energy can actually dip down, and if we increase our activity, even in bits and pieces, our energy can actually increase. It’s like the body says, “oh, you need me to do stuff? Ok, cool. I’ll get on that and make more energy.” Or something ๐Ÿ˜‰โค๏ธ

      I’m totally rooting for you too! You go, luv!! ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿผ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿผ๐Ÿค—โค๏ธ

      Liked by 1 person

    1. You are too lovely! Thank you, sweets ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ’–. Here’s some mutual support back atcha! We’ll each get through our shizz together ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿผ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿผ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿผ๐ŸŒท๐Ÿ’˜

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Hell yeah!! You go girl! Congratulations on your new beginning. I’m so excited for you ๐Ÿ˜˜๐Ÿ’ž๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿผ

          Liked by 1 person

    2. Yeah!! We can totally do this ๐Ÿ˜˜โค๏ธ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿผ๐ŸŒŸ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿผ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿผ

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! Hehe I realize now that that post sounded potentially like I was down about the whole thing, but I was ok ๐Ÿ˜Š. Just being my over-contemplative, serious self lol ๐Ÿ˜˜๐Ÿ’–

      I hope you’re doing awesome as well!! ๐Ÿ’–๐ŸŒŸ๐Ÿ’–

      Liked by 1 person

  3. In the latest instalment of “I do that too, never knew it was an Aspie thing” – I’ve reinvented myself many times, usually in an attempt to create a more confident, grown-up, put-together professional me, someone fashionable who wears make-up, someone more popular etc. Never worked, I always reverted back to evading the Sheriff of Nottingham or hunting serial killers or whatever I was doing at that time.
    Of course, I realise that your project is a different kind of reinvention, and I really hope you can pull it off. As you say, it’s not going to b easy, and I think I’ve got a few failed attempts of that kind behind me as well. But maybe I was working from the wrong premises or with the wrong methodology. I’d certainly be up for trying that sort of thing again.
    A ghastly thought occurred to me: what if my whole “am I autistic” project it just another reinvention? And not the kind where you work with your true self, but the kind I spoke of before, where I try to invent a new persona for myself, which ultimately is going to fail because it just isn’t me? Gahhh!

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Thank you for sharing your thoughts! ๐Ÿ˜Š. I can absolutely relate; in the latest installment of “I know what you mean!” ๐Ÿ’–, I, too, had been briefly terrified that the idea that I’m an Aspie was a simple desire to wrap up loose ends and exonerate myself (“see?? I’m not wrong after all! I really am different!”) ๐Ÿ˜Š. I thought maybe I had been looking for an excuse for being what everyone had thought I was (the labels ranged from lazy to underachiever to ditzy to desperate to socially unrefined to bossy to controlling to angry to nitpicky to stubborn to etc etc etc). I’d been told (or treated like) all of these things for so long that I had begun to believe them and that actually made me doubt, at first, the possibility that my way of being could actually be legitimate after all. Was I truly an Aspie, or was this a potential “acquittal”?

      Going through Tania Marshall’s and Help 4 Asperger’s and Samantha Craft’s lists of personality traits in girls (and reading lots of other blogs written by other female Aspies REALLY helped. Time and again, I was shown that the idea that I may be an Aspie myself was simply too valid to ignore. I saw so much of myself in those lists that it was eerie! I couldn’t deny or ignore it, and after a short while, I began to feel more solid, more secure. Those lists contained elements that seemed like the authors had been looking through my window. It was like “OMG how do they *know*??” ๐Ÿ˜‰

      Fret not, dear friend ๐Ÿ˜Š. The uncertainty and anguish and inner turmoil I feel in your words are a really common thing. *Really* common. That whole “what if it isn’t Asperger’s/autism??” thing – yep, another very shared experience. ๐Ÿ’ž

      Liked by 4 people

  4. Thanks for your kind and considerate reply. I do keep coming back to the same problem and airing it in my comments on your blog – perseverating much? ๐Ÿ˜‰
    Anyway, I’ll figure it out eventually. The evidence keeps mounting up…

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hehe that’s totally fine! I’ve probably done the same thing with other blogs lol ๐Ÿ˜‰โค๏ธ. It’s a process. Take the time You need ๐Ÿ’–. I’m standing with you every step of the way ๐Ÿ˜˜๐Ÿ’–

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  5. Love this!! I’m a chronic reinventor, myself? Not, like, I constantly do it, but whenever I begin to feel stagnant or lost or like I’m just not getting enough of my needs met, I dig through myself and find a way to overhaul something. It even often includes burning social bridges – cutting ties with contacts that don’t or won’t appreciate or be supportive of my new needs. I never thought of it as a possible Autism thing. Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for sharing your thoughts! I don’t know if it’s been documented anywhere, but from what I’ve seen, it seems to be a likely phenomenon among Aspie/autistic peeps ๐Ÿ˜Šโค๏ธ. Perhaps not universal, but more common than in the general population ๐Ÿ’ž๐ŸŒบ

      I think we either get bored with ourselves or maybe sometimes it’s an “extreme” instance of masking/acting (?). I’m not sure; either way, I think it’s kinda cool, if it doesn’t cause the person too much stress and they don’t burn good bridges by accident ๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿ’“๐ŸŒท

      Liked by 1 person

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