I'm hoping that the idea below helps other people at varying stages along the journey that we are all on.
My journey through struggle, realisation, diagnosis, and post-diagnosis (underway) has, as for most people I expect, included periods where autism generally and my autism specifically is all I think about, as well as periods where it seems that I've almost forgotten about it all (until office chatter happens, or the TV is too damned *excited* about everything, or I need to touch a wooden spoon!).
My memory doesn't seem to have enough spare capacity to carry around everything that I've learned so far about all of this, and this means that a) I fail to realise the benefits of this learning and b) can easily (as happened in my Autism evaluation!) be completely caught unprepared if someone asks me "So, what does autism mean to you?".
So, I created something that I'm calling my "Autistic Charter"; a single page description of the challenges and strengths that my autism brings, and what I resolve to do about it to have the best life that I can. I want to share it in case the idea helps others (i.e. you could make your own version), but also to see how people react to what I've written about myself. I'm taking a risk here that some will say "Pah! is that all you have to deal with?" but at least I will have a sense of where I fit on the landscape that we call "the spectrum" & whether I have close neighbours or live in an isolated spot at the edge of the village.
By the way, I'm also currently reading "The Nine Degrees of Autism" which complements these thoughts perfectly & I would thoroughly recommend.
Thanks this is awesome.... I definitely identify with nearly everything you have written, but would not have been able to summarise or articulate as well as you have. Visually it really works for me too. I too like data lots of other people don't understand why but it is like a language of its own to me from which you can find curious anaomolies and focused solutions.... I find that exciting. Thanks again this really useful.
Excellent - thanks, I really like it when stuff I do turns out to be helpful to other people :-)