Monday, February 18, 2019

Growing Older

Ahhh... February. The tail end of winter. Where I live it tends to be the harshest, most wintry, winter time there is most years, all squished up into the smallest month. Sure we have some cold snaps November through April, but in terms of snow, ice, cold and viruses February most usually beats all other months in stats.

So, I am sitting here sipping lukewarm tea nursing my terrible head cold that seems to have taken hold of not just me, but my whole family. It's one that lingers, wandering away a tad one day only to come screaming back the next twice as bad as it was the day before. It's not following the usual schedule of a cold and I am starting to grow impatient and fatigued. Not just of my own health, but that of Beans who can't tell me what he needs, how he feels, and I don't think he fully understands it himself, so he gets really demanding and melty. He's also tired of the weather keeping him inside.

I think we can all agree that spring can't come soon enough.

One of the things that I have been doing with the few minutes of time between tending to  Beans is going through this blog and deleting posts that aren't relevant any longer starting from way back when it began in 2011. I haven't made it very far yet, but it's certainly been an eye opening experience for me to see how my writing has changed. Not just how much my writing has changed, but how much I have matured and my perceptions of life has blossomed into something so much different than I had ever expected, or realized. In the last 8 years from the age of 32 to 40 I have become a different version of myself that is definitely an improvement. Not that we ever become a different person, because I think the nature of who we are really doesn't ever change, but we do improve, or I guess deteriorate (whichever the case may be) on how we coordinate that nature with the world, how we express it and live it.

My views were a lot more centered around a narrower concept of everything. It's kind of hard to explain, but it is almost like when I was younger I could only see 2/3 of every situation and now I am able to see more. Not that I was myopic, but that I hyper-focused in on parts of any situation in life and made it about whatever interest or idea that appealed to  me,  or that I knew about. The rest was kind of invisible to me. I definitely cared about others and did extend my thoughts beyond myself to them, so I would not call myself self-centered at all. Just single minded, maybe.

Another big difference I have noticed with this is how my views on autism and just the sense of what it means to me and others. I don't surround myself with the same culture of autism bloggers the way I used to and I also don't think about autism as much as I used to, either. Many of my past entries dealt with my children's autism in ways I'd never consider writing about them today. I am deleting posts like that and am quite embarrassed that they were ever written in the first place. I guess we all make mistakes as we raise children and that was one of mine.

There are some drawbacks to getting older. Some people may experience life in a different speed and variance, but for me I am finding this last couple years of my life to be getting easier and easier. Things just don't bother me like they used to. I'm more relaxed. I'm more able to take in life at a pace that feels more meaningful, rather than rushed, anxious and sometimes resentful. The world feels just as threatening, I suppose, but I feel like I can maybe manage it, though. Not that I don't have bad days and will  certainly continue to write about mental health and autism advocacy. I just feel like my perception of myself has changed and with it the voice in which I narrate with has, too. It feels kind of cool, like an accomplishment of sorts, that I feel so much more emotionally balanced, like a piece shifted into place.

I'm still sifting and deleting posts, but soon enough I think this blog will be updated. I hope to be able to find a cool  new layout, too. We'll see. Stay tuned!

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