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FASD and Autism…

I was recently diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder, too. About 3 weeks ago. I have not said anything, here because I don’t know how I feel. There is one thing to think you have something, but then you are actually diagnosed with it. I went through the same thing when a doctor said I had all the characteristics of someone with FASD. I knew that you could have both. I actually wondered if I did. I have heard that people with FASD can have both. I know both can have a lot of the same traits, but I had a neurologist ask me a bunch of questions and he said not only by my answers, but in observing me, he knew I had Autism. Hmmm. Someone asked me how I felt. I didn’t even answer. I really don’t know how I feel about it. I’m not saying this is bad. I have got to know a lot of neurotypicals in my years and I can honestly say, there is not one I would want to be like…lol. So, I’m okay with being on the spectrum. When i wrote Autism Spectrum Disorder, the word that I kept staring at was Disorder. Really? This is a disorder? I want to look up what that means. Wait a second…okay a medical condition involving a disturbance to the usual functioning of the mind.

Okay. I will let that process.

Who says how we process and what we do is a distrubance. Okay. I get that things are not right. But who says that neurotypical brains are just that…typical?…

Just a question. Image

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Structure brings productivity in FASD individuals

I have learned something huge lately, I am no good without structure! I absolutely do amazing if I just have structure. I would work all day on a project and not even want to take a lunch. Lunch to me, is unstructured time. I can eat through lunch, but why stop. When I stop, I feel like I don’t know what to do. You would think eating would be what I do, but I sit there trying to figure out something else to do. I either get on the computer or put a puzzle together. I can’t just sit and watch a T.V. show. I am not good at downtime at all!!! I will work all day until I paint an entire room. I will work until a project is done even if it takes days. I will stop to sleep, etc. but I get right up and busy. I love it!

Structure makes me feel healthy and vibrant and keeps my brain focused. The second I have to come up with something to do. I’m done. Give me a list and I’m great. Tell me to find something to do and I will be the most ADD you will ever see. I will hop from thing to thing to thing and get nothing accomplished. Oh, I will stay busy, but I will forever be lost.

I just started a new job today. I am not good with anything new, but this went well. It actually fit me perfectly! I just did things that were given me and I could do that all day. If my job is to make someone else’s life easier and they just keep giving me lists of things to do–I’m good! I’m great! I thought about just going to a store and stocking shelves all day cuz I know the time would go fast and I would probably be the most focused one there and not even wanting to take a lunch. Organizing and stacking and building something like Lego’s is the kind of busy work that I love. I also love doing things on the computer like blogging.

If I am left to my own, I seriously could tell you I was busy the entire day, but I have no idea what I got done and I leave my day frustrated!

Structure is so important to me living with FASD. I am not lazy! I am not unmotivated! I just dont know what to do when. I have lots of ideas, but I’m not good at executing. BUT tell me exactly what to do–and I’ll work the entire day until its done! AND I’ll be happy! AND I wont be frustrated! AND I won’t get into trouble and look in areas where I could get in trouble…lol.

I seriously could work the entire day and not even feel like it was 12 hours. The time just goes so fast cuz my brain is just so into what I’m doing that I dont even know that several hours went by. Give me those same hours with no structure and with me as the pilot of my day…lol….I’m in trouble!

I guarantee if you give someone with FAS a list of things to do, they will get it done and do their best.

I know there are things on this job I’m going to run into that I don’t know what I’m doing. I said to myself, I might not be able to, but I will do my best and my best is all I can give.

Structure is key to a happy FASD person! AND happy FASD caregivers and external brains!