On work.

I’m not sure I’m really qualified to write about working, what with my longest official job lasting around 6 weeks.  I didn’t get fired, but it was seasonal.

My doctor’s don’t ever think I’ll be able to work full time. and stay sane. I mean that literally, not in the cutesy sense people like to use the word sane. I’m still figuring out what I want to do. I’m considering switching my major to disability studies or graphic design, but I’m not sure what I want to do just yet.

I’m also, and I hate to admit it, a bit scared of the fact that I’m going have to ask for reasonable accommodations under the ADA, but it is necessary. It’s not as if a work place is going to believe that Figaro is a service dog on my word alone.

To be honest, because I can pass sometimes, even if it does take up spoons, I’m not sure I want to bring him to interviews. It feels dishonest to spring him on the employer once I’m hired, but I at the same time I don’t want to be counted out because of assumptions. Of course, it’s just a function of my privilege that I can hide sometimes.

I’m not sure where I stand on passing right now. I can’t pass as white or male if I wanted to, so it feels odd to have this option of passing in the context invisible disability. I never really passed as straight, but I can do it if I put effort into it, like when I’m in my hate filled home town.

Passing in order to get privileges is just very interesting to me right now, especially as it relates to work and school.  A good part of my failure for the last two semesters can be traced to my urge to pass and refusal to use accommodations that I need. I’m still struggling with identifying as disabled in meatspace, even though I’ve been this way since I was a toddler.

Thus, I work on how feel and keep mulling things over. This didn’t turn out as quite the post I wanted it to be, so I’ll write one that is a bit more generalized latter this week.

What’s wrong with me?

Having disabling mental illness is interesting. Insanity is brilliant at times. Feeling like you own the world feels pretty damn good, but makes it hard to function. However, what really makes it hard is the anxiety, the gloom and anger.

I wish I was a rich eccentric and that I had fine house and servants. I could be free  in my madness. Nothing that I disliked would be in my house. I would have so many pets and I would not be alone. There would be none of those god awful lights so many stores have in them and no loud noises beyond music when I wished it.

Sadly, I’m stuck in the real world, with all of its lights and colors and noises and crowds. So many things I can’t escape. I have no choice but to live in the city, because the very thought of driving leaves me weak with fear and worry. Oh, but the crowds, they can’t be escaped and they press in on you, smothering you. People are… They are so fucking loud and pushy. Putting on a mask takes all I have. Pretend to be normal so they don’t see the animal I am. Can’t break down and yell at them to make it stop, that simply wouldn’t do. I’d be locked away again.

So, I smile and take my pills and pretend to be human, to be one of them. Some of them, the ones with a touch of madness, they seem to understand. Their friendship is a blessing, an anchor. Prehaps, one day, I’ll find someone touched with insanity as well. They won’t shy away and we’ll burn and melt together.

But, as you can see, these are all just the ravings and dreams of a complete lunatic. Prehaps now that you’ve had a glimpse, you’ll shy away as well. That’s for the best, because I tend to drag others down and I know that once you see what I am, you’ll never treat me quite the same again.

Tiny Cuts

This a repost of something I was talking about on Ravelry.com

Sometimes I feel like I and other disabled, POC, queer, female, trans and/or other minority people are dying a death caused by a million tiny cuts.

A little cut for every little joke, every time you’re told you’re too sensitive, every time you can’t speak up out of fear for your life or your job. A cut every time some looks at you with pity or hatred, or is surprised you speak so well, or tells you you’re not like the others. As soon as one cut scabs over you get another. Maybe it’s the joke you weren’t mean to hear, or the houses you or your children are no longer invited to once they get a look at you. It’s a never ending slow torture.

A million tiny cuts and we’re told not to scream.

I just want to thank Feministing.com for adding to those cuts while claiming to speak for me. You are failing as the allies you claim to be.

I’m cosigning meloukhia’s post.

Chasing normality

In all the reading and thinking about neurodiversity, mad pride and disability rights, I still have a dirty secret. I’m working on it, because the guilt is driving me mad. How can I be a good activist and ally if I can’t even think the way I ask other people to think? I’m a hypocrite.

I wish I could be normal and not have to deal with mania and depression, with panic attacks and rage. I don’t want this. I don’t want to be afraid to leave my house or to want to kill my self. I don’t enjoy being sick.

Hell, I’ve used the benefits and yes, they are good, but sometimes, I’d rather lose them and just be an ordinary girl. Maybe I wouldn’t have the bouts of creativity and insight, but I just might stop scaring people off. I might lose my ability to read really fast, but maybe I’d have a boyfriend or girlfriend and I wouldn’t freak out if the restaurant zie took me to had the bad kind of lighting. I might be able to go to a party and not take constant breaks, maybe even stay downstairs during Thanksgiving.

However, I think I’d miss the bits that make me myself. I’ve been this way for so long, I’m not sure what normal is. Is normal having a 9 to 5 job where I sit in an office all day banging away on a keyboard? Is it settling down and popping out some kids? I don’t know, but I shouldn’t dream, because I never will have normal and I think I’m coming to a point where I can be okay with that.

I feel I should already be okay with it, considering I accept the broad range of humanity in others, but I have a hard time accepting it in myself. I suppose I just have to work at it because I know intellectually that normal does not equal better, but I’m not there subconsciously, yet. I suppose I’ll just keep working on it.

So, if I have any readers, can you tell me if you struggle with this?