The Difficulty of Friendship

Okay, if you know anything about Asperger’s is that we have a difficult time making and maintaining friendships.  I just never got the hang o f it.  I probably can count on one hand the number of friends that I have.  And this isn’t an attempt to garner pity, but just sharing a truth.  Growing up, I always wondered why I was so different from everyone else.  I  wanted friends.  I just didn’t know how to get them.  I couldn’t maintain good eye contact, I was not proficient at small talk, and I wasn’t sure how to act around other people.  It just seemed to me that other women were completely into other things that I had no interest in:  scrapbooking, for instance.  I was attending a new members’ class at a local church when the discussion turned to what the other women’s hobbies were.  They gushed about scrapbooking.  I guess I just didn’t get the thrill of it.  I, for one, didn’t even have a large collection of baby photos of my two sons.  It just wasn’t something I thought of doing, as a woman with Asperger’s.  I didn’t know then what I know now.  Unfortunately for my sons, they won’t have a lot of childhood photos to look back on.

But I was always the quiet one.  Not that I always wanted to be.  I talked the ears off of people I knew.  And just ask my poor husband how much I talk to him.  He just tells me that I must be saving it all for him!  Lucky guy!  I’ve heard that us women have so many words that need to be used up in a day, and he gets to hear almost all of them.  I bet that he feels so honored!

Anyway, I am not a social person, not even with my own family.  I like to see how they all are and then I normally shut up after that.  It’s not that I don’t want to talk to them, it’s just that I don’t want to talk period.  No offense to my family. 

It’s lonely, though, not having friends to confide in, though my husband is my best friend.  I’m thankful that he does listen to me, for the most part.  It used to make me cry, wondering why I was so different.  It doesn’t anymore, because now I  understand.  It is just the way that I am.  It’s not that I don’t want to change, but there are times that I much rather be alone with my thoughts and my books.  I love reading, because they help me with my fantasy life.  I have an amazing imagination, that’s probably why I love to write.  But I won’t go there this time. 

So, if you see someone who doesn’t seem to want to be the life of the party, it may not be that they are terribly shy or standoffish, it could very well be that they just don’t feel like speaking but would much rather listen to what is going on around them.  And that’s not such a bad thing to be.

Guilt, guilt, go away!

Here I go again with the guilt. I’m up at 4 or 4:30 A.M. but I don’t always know whether I should get up or not. Why? Because laying next to me is my dear husband, fast asleep. It’s: do I get up and not be here when he wakes up, or do I just stay here and try to fall back asleep for another hour or so? Trying my best to be a good wife, I at least make it a point to go to bed at the same time as he does. But I am a morning-person, always have been. So needless to say I’ve stayed in bed the past few days, shunning my early-morning quiet time/writing time. In addition to that, the time of year isn’t helping much either since the sun rises later now. During the summer, when the sun is up a lot earlier, it’s not as difficult for me to drag my butt out of the warm bed and shuffle down the hall to the kitchen table where my laptop sits, waiting.

So I discussed this situation over with my husband, and he said he was fine with it. That was a relief. I don’t want to feel guilty about my writing. I want to have a clear head to think up clever plot lines and character sketches. I do not want to bog down the old brain with feelings of remorse or uncertainty. What do I do? Can I even fall back to sleep? So, tomorrow, bright and (very) early, I will bounce, okay, perhaps that’s not accurate…stumble is probably a much better word choice…and shuffle down the hall and into the kitchen to the table where my laptop waits. I think that my brain does work better in the early morning when it’s nice and quiet in the house, for the time being. With my husband and two grown sons, and a mangy mutt, the house doesn’t remain that way for too long.

I’m ready for tomorrow morning. I’m ready to write. I’m ready to start the day off right with creativity and coffee; lots and lots of coffee. And when the day is done, I will be bathed in a joyous sense of accomplishment. Thank you, dear. Thank you, brain. I’m always happiest when everything flow together nicely.

On a side note: I recently went to one of our thrift stores and purchased a few books. I got another Vince Flynn, Alex Berenson, and Joseph Wambaugh to add to my growing collection. Okay, I hope I spelled Wambaugh correctly. And currently I am reading another fantastic romance by Lori Foster, Run the Risk. Well, friends, that’s it for now. Happy Writing and happy reading. If you’re like me, you aren’t happy if you don’t get at least a half hour to read a good book. What are you reading right now?

Another day is slowly melting away into early evening. I got up an extra forty minutes this morning to make more time for doing the things I would like to accomplish in a day. Time. Something we all wish we had more of. Time to work out. Time to spend with loved ones. Time to spend with God. Time to just be by ourselves. We are all so short on time. But we need our sleep. It is so good for us to make sure we have an adequate amount of rest. Yet I yearn to have more of it. Time to work out. To read. To write. To garden. To bake. To clean. To write a letter or to call a good friend with whom I haven’t spoken with in quite a while.

I guess it is true that we make time for what we really want to do. I complain to my husband that I can’t seem to find enough time to get everything done. He tells me to organize my time better. And this is true. If I would sit down and think about it seriously, I would realize that I have spent too much time wasting away at social media sites. Not that we shouldn’t make some time for that too, but I think that we have a tendency to overdo it in that area. It’s so much fun, though! I love connecting with people; old friend and making new ones. As I approach my fiftieth birthday this Fall, I realize that I need to get in as much doing as I possibly can. More than half my life is basically over. Wow. Talk about something that can depress you! But enjoying one’s life and the time remaining is very important. We shouldn’t be squandering our time. We should be making the most of it.

Yesterday was my older son’s birthday. He is now twenty. No longer in the throes of teenage angst. But now an official adult. I made time yesterday to bake a homemade cherry pie, removing the pits and all. An interesting time. But I love my sons, and my husband, and would do anything for them. I made the time.

Each day, a gift. Each thoughtful word or compliment is like money in your soul’s account. Give and spend wisely.