But I'm telling myself I'll be okay
Even on my weakest days
I get a little bit stronger
Doesn't happen overnight but you turn around
And a month's gone by and you realize you haven't cried
I'm not giving you a hour or a second or another minute longer
I'm busy getting stronger"
- "Stronger," Sara Evans
"If I had a song,
I'd sing it in the morning,
I'd sing it in the evening,
All over this land
I'd sing out danger,
I'd sing out a warning
I'd sing out love between my brothers and my sisters,
All over this land."
- "If I Had a Hammer," Peter, Paul and Mary
Once in a while, in this life, we are treated to gifts, wonderful gifts that restore our faith in our ability to live on this planet. Gifts that bolster us and tell us we're on the right path. No, I'm not talking about anything you can buy in a store. I'm talking about something ever so much more precious- the gift of human connection.
Human connection is tricky at best. Asperger's or not, humans are complicated beings. But I won't deny that Asperger's makes it much harder. That is why I treasure it when I stumble upon a connection with someone else that feels real, genuine and heartfelt. A connection that I don't feel I'm just faking my way through. A conversation where I'm not just struggling to come up with things to say, but instead have SO MANY things to say, as does the other person, that I can barely keep them all in my head - but it doesn't matter, because they keep changing and growing along with what the other person says, so that the conversation evolves in a wholly organic manner, as all good conversations should. A flowing, effortless conversation - something so rare for me that it might as well be put on the endangered species list.
Does this sound odd to non-Aspies? I'm not sure, because I'm not one of them. I wonder if these sorts of conversations are easier for them. I think they must be. It is of course hard to tell how much is truly easy for NTs and how much is just posturing!
But tonight, I had this rare species of a conversation with a friend on Skype. As the best conversations seem to be, it was spontaneous, arising out of the need for me to ask a question on a topic unrelated to the conversation we ended up having. This question ended up reminding me of another topic, which in turn reminded her of something, which reminded me of....And we kept going. And sooner rather than later got into some rather meaty, important topics of a significant emotional and psychological nature, which is my favorite kind of conversation.
I was talking about some unpleasant incidents from my past, but for once, I didn't do it with any signs of anxiety. I didn't do it with desperation in my voice. I didn't have "RESCUE ME!" written all over my face. Needless to say, that made for a better conversation. I can count on one hand, hell maybe one finger, the amount of times I have been able to talk about these topics in a laid back way, however. Just sitting back in my chair, pondering my life with a friend in similar circumstances. I love that version of laid back me. Can she come out and play more often?
My friend told me she thought I was on the right path. She said she thought I was doing everything right, and that I was being really smart and thoughtful about how I chose to do things. She reminded me of how far I had come. And for once, I believed her. I believed her when she said I was doing the right thing. I think we all know how hard it can be to accept positive feedback when we're used to negative.
So, you know what? At least for tonight, I think I'm okay.
Tomorrow, though, may be a different story. But then again, maybe not.