suzefricker@mylifeaccordingtome.org Available all the time, just send me an email and I will get back to you.

Inspiration

So I have had a string of people telling me that I am an inspiration and to be honest I do not understand why.

For me, I am just living my life. I have learnt ways to cope. If I have a meltdown due to my autism I work from home till I have fully recovered. If I have problems with my back I work from home till I no longer need to. If I feel low I try and reach out to people for support.

The truth is that every day for me I do not know what I could be doing because of all of my disabilities. Apparently though because I want to work this makes me inspirational. Because I, with all my disabilities still go out of my way to support others, it makes my inspiration. I do not understand this. For me, I am just living my life knowing what I can and can not do and I make the most of a bad situation. I still try and do things that everyone else can do but I do it in a controlled manner. Because of this, I have to plan well in advance what I am going to do. It doesn’t make me inspirational. It just me living my life.

I don’t understand how me living my life makes me an inspiration? Can someone explain this to me?

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A bit Shakey

Life with a neurodiverse condition is hard enough however, life with two neurodiverse conditions which are polar opposites of each other is even harder.

At 16 I was diagnosed with dyslexia and slight dyspraxia. This amongst other things affects your ability to deal with sequencing.

At 31 I was diagnosed partially as suffering from Autism Spectrum Condition. This really makes me want to do things step by step and follow my routine.

Two neurodiverse conditions that are polar opposites of each other.

Normally the autistic side wins out with me and I am able to do things the way they are supposed to be done. However, 2 weeks ago I got over-enthusiastic and my ability to sequence what I am doing got me into trouble. Not only did it get me into trouble it left me feeling rather low. A few days later the autistic side of me took over and I realized where I had gone wrong but by that point, the damage had already been done.

I am feeling very shakey about this because I seem to of upset someone who I really admire and I am learning more about emotions so I am now 60/40% sure that I have upset her all because my ability to sequence fell down and the emotive side of my head decided to make a power play.

I do not know what to do.

I lost the support I had from the NAS when I moved to Chatham and have been unable to get free support set up since. Now I do not know what I am doing and am worried that I have damaged the relationship I had with this person. 😦

Some times I do not know how I manage to get anything done in my life having two completely different conditions. 😦 It is like a constant war in my head over who has control and I am going to get it wrong from time to time. How do I rectify this?

Secert Teacher

When I was in London this week helping my mum with my dad and working I watched a show called Secert Teacher.

Steven Barlett went undercover in a school to give two young people an opportunity they never would have had. But I wonder, where is the help for those of us who came before.

I am older then he is by 7 years so when he was in reception I was already in year 7 & 8. I had dreams but growing up for me in the 90s was hard going. Girls could not be autistic and dyslexia was ignored by schools unless parents forced the issue. So I went through school being told I was lazy and not understanding why I was not like everyone else. I honestly didn’t even think I would get GCSEs and thought that my only aspiration in life would be a toilet cleaner if that. All but one school wrote me off.

Where was my millionaire to help me? No where in site.

I am like many people in my age group who got missed and ignored by the system due to lack of knowledge and pure ignorance. Maybe one day someone will reward me and help me get the things I need done done. But that is highly unlikely. I guess this generation gets all the break and my generation gets to stay invisible and our dreams ignored.

Now I keep my dreams to myself because I know, I have no way to achieve them and where people like Steven Bartlett can succeed people like me can’t.

Giving Up

I feel like giving up.

Again I have been rejected for help and support for my disabilities. Everywhere I was being bogged off too I have tried to contact and in over a month they have not gotten back to me.

There are potential benefits that I could possibly apply but no one is telling me how to apply for them.

How the hell am I supposed to get support? I will have to pay for it now and honestly how the hell am I going to do that? £725 per month in rent £300 in bills and £370 to pay for a loan. £200 spare of my salary and £400 in disabilities which comes in once every 4 weeks. This does not tally with my other personal bills will I pay £250 a month to. I only get £1600 per month so I have to live off my benefits for food and other things so that I am able to get support.

I am an abuse survivor and no one is able to help me. I am seriously angry and upset.

Honestly, how can I continue to support other people when I get zero support in return. I feel like giving up.

I’m invisible

I am invisible. I have been invisible since I was in school. Not one of the 3 primary schools and two secondary schools picked up on the fact that I was dyslexic. The medical society refused to recognize women with autism unless they were seriously on one end of the scale so we just got labeled problem children.

I am invisible. That’s why I can’t be seen by people.

To, too, two be or not to, too, two be

Wondering whether you have clocked on to what this article is going to be about by the title, please let me know if you did.

I am dyslexic. This is something I struggled with prior to diagnosis to the point that I needed a lot of support to get me to a standard where I could even get A levels. To give you an idea. When I chose my A levels I had only been diagnosed for a year and had already had to redo my GCSEs once. One of the courses I chose was Sociology which was a brave move as this subject meant LOTS of essay writing.

I don’t know if you know but sociology exams (the essay part) are graded out of 20. When I started the course my homework essays were getting 3s,2s or 1s out of 20. On one fateful day, I had really struggled and I got a 0 out of 20. My world seemed very dark when I got that assignment back. I thought, “you know what I shouldn’t be here. I am dyslexic what made me think that I could do this, I just can’t do it, I’m so dumb”.

But, I got help. This help came in the form of my teacher who knew I was trying so hard but just could not seem to improve. So, he offered me a solution. Every time I got a bad grade on my homework, we would go through it during a free period that we both had at the same time and he would show me where I went wrong. He would then give me a 2nd opportunity to rewrite the assignment. This was not to change my grade but to make sure that I had an opportunity to stick what I needed to learn in my head.

Slowly I started seeing my grades go up. I went from 1s, 2s, and 3s, to 16s, 17s and 18s out of 20. This gave me so much of a boost that when I went to sit my exams I was able to sit them with confidence I had never had in any exams previously. My end result was a in Sociology. I could not believe it. I was so happy I went and thanked my teacher for my result.

Learning disabilities don’t mean that you can’t do something. It means that you need to find a way to deal with it and work around it to get the best out of yourself. Some suggestions for you to do:

  1. Dragon Software (or any other speech to text software)
  2. Read and Write Gold (or something Similar)
  3. Spider Diagrammes for things you need to learn so that you have a visual map of what is needed.

Don’t give in to the Imposter Syndrome. I ask anyone out there with a learning disability to challenge yourself to find ways to make things easier for you. I did it and I can honestly say at the age of 16 when I was diagnosed I couldn’t even imagine getting my GCSEs let alone a B & 2 Cs in A levels. You are not alone, ask for help.

You never know….

You never know how run down you have gotten until you actually stop and take some time for yourself. This is something that I have learnt the hard way. I was soo low before I went on holiday. Even with some of the people who I was penpalling with all I could write about was my up coming trip. This is not a good sign for anyone. When you are that run down you have pushed your body to beyond the limits you should have… It doesn’t help with your mental health or your physical health.

You must always remember that you are important and no matter how much good you do for others, you will never be able to continue if you run out of energy or steam.

For people with disabilities, we all know that we have the added pressures of managing our disabilities as well as everything else that we do and so it is important to know what your limits are. If you want to try and push beyond the limits to do it in a way that you are not going to hurt yourself.

I emplore everyone to make sure that they make time for themselves as often as they can. You do not need to be left in a position where you are unable to continue. Look after yourself and then you will be able to look after others x