2013
05.06

Suddenly saw a tweet from Muddasheep about PHQ being ten years old now and remembered the happy funtimes (sarcasm) when I was much younger; when people hurt me all of the time and PHQ was the only place I felt accepted.  The only place where people weren’t hateful at me for being who I was.  When people in school bullied me and threatened me and were generally terrible at me for standing out, I had a safe place because of the community at PHQ.  I had a place where there were others who were standing out, who were also going through rough and terrible times.  We could feel comfort in knowing that we were not alone even if we were countries apart from one another.  I had a safe place in which I could take my anger and frustrations out on nameless victims, faceless things, and pretend they were people who had hurt me.

Back then, I was not feeling very happy at all about anything.  I was probably not the best friend one would have; I was pretty caught up in my own darkness.  My own problems.  I did what I could to help others, but I was not as grateful back then as perhaps I should have been.  I wasn’t good at feelings.  I wasn’t good at talking to other people and telling them I cared about them.  I hope that somehow people knew in some way how much they meant to me.

And the winters.  The times I almost killed myself and ended up in the psychiatric hospital and people from PHQ sent “get better soon”-emails, which I read from the computer in the library when I was allowed to go there.  I remember one time when I disappeared a while and people from PHQ tried to make sure I was still alive.  Showing that I mattered to them, in times I felt as if everything was hopeless; that no one cared if I lived or died, or probably would be happier if I just disappeared.  But that was not true; it took me years to realise that, but it slowly, slowly begin to sink in.  A community of people playing a game about killing people were the ones who cared about me when society and teachers and family failed me and didn’t seem to care.  A community of people who played a game about killing people were the ones who had places in their hearts and minds for a broken creature like I was back then.  Who had patience, love and compassion to share with me, loyal and kind people who refused to give up on me even when I myself did.  I don’t think this equation makes sense in many people’s heads, but I think that by acknowledging our anger and inner monsters we could keep them under control and do something creative with them.  We could turn them into things which worked for us.  PHQ gave our monsters a place to play and blow off steam while our hearts and minds hung out and helped create a place where we could grow as people.

Most of those who I talked to back then will probably never know how much they helped me and mattered to me, but they were a great help growing up and getting better.  How they helped me keep some grip on sanity and how they helped me grow.  And I do feel much better nowadays; I feel strong and creative and rather cheerful usually.  When I have bad times (and my, can they still be really bad!) and people are rude and cruel to me, I know by now that if I just carry on, putting one foot in front of the other and keep on living through sheer stubbornness, things will get better again.  PHQ helped me to get through times like that over and over again until I learned that bad times pass, and this would not have been possible if it had not been for the friends I had back then.

Countries and worlds apart, but together in my heart.

I must of course give a special thanks to Muddasheep as well, because his kindness did get me through some really bad things.  His encouragement when I tried to do things.  Gave me someone to send strange letters to and sent letters in return which I could read when I was feeling lonely.  He was great company, and so was his music.  It kept me company through endless nights of insomnia and nightmares and writing.  It kept me company in school; carried on a CD I had in a small CD player I always brought with me.  I brought it with me to the hospitals when I was committed there in the winters, and I could cry to that music, I could growl it very, very angrily.  With his music in my head I did not have to feel alone, even when I was cut off from everything else, locked up in a small, yellow-walled room.

And it kept me company through joyful times as well; I brought it with me on trips and on vacations.  I once forced my family to listen to his music for several hours straight while they were trapped in a car with me while we were going somewhere; I cant remember where.  I suspect they mostly put up with it because it was one of the few times they could see me looking genuinely happy.

I still listen to his music almost daily.  Create new memories to it, remember who and were I used to be and how far I’ve come.  I realise how much better I am feeling now, how I eventually came to a time and place where I can be happy and sad and strong and weak with people I would never have met or loved or cared about if I had died all those years ago.  I’m still drawing nowadays, because Muddasheep didn’t laugh at my hopes of becoming an artist back then.  I have taken up music and I hope to one day be brave enough to put it on the internet.

I am still around, I am still alive and I would probably not have been if it had not been for people like the ones I met through PHQ at a time when I really needed it.  Even if I have drifted away from PHQ almost completely, I do remember you with fondness.  I hope that you are all doing well, that you have found happiness and joy and love.  That the hard and bad times passes quickly when they visit you.  I hope that you are surrounded by friends, that you meet challenges and that you overcome them.  I hope that you have friends to drink tea and eat cake with.  I remember a time when I felt alone, and you were there, and you will always be a part of who I am.

You will always be with me, worlds apart but always in my heart.

/Pao (Panterdjuret)

2013
04.21

Yesterday I wrote a bit about how adults constantly lie to children while at the same time telling children that lying is a bad thing.  Today I thought I should take up a few ways one can attempt to become more consistent.

Read More >>

2013
04.20

There is a really worrying double standard in how many people treat children.  On one hand they tell children that lying is wrong and bad and punish children who are caught lying.  On the other they tell their children about Santa and the Easter Bunny with a straight face, and in some cases punish the children when the children figure out the truth.

I am of a very firm belief that this really has to end.

Read More >>

2013
04.18

(springtime rain)

springtime rain cold as winter
spring summer rays and then rain
and then a cloudy cold
and then hesitant sun
and nothing stays
makes a consistent weather

cold cold cold
melting ice liquid snow
cold cold cold
a long way to go
before summer

a freezing wind
over fields of mud and dirt
rotting grass
and last year’s flowers
yet more rain
before the sun
can dry and warm the earth
and let the water down
to the sleeping seeds
waiting thirsty roots

cold cold cold
melting ice liquid snow
cold cold cold
a long way to go
before summer

2012
10.12

atari

we’re running out of options
like go stones in atari

2012
03.15

It is something one frequently encounters when meeting doctors or well-meaning helpers or psychologists or what-have-you. As soon as you tell them that you happen to have Asperger’s Syndrome, something changes in them. They think hard for a moment and then they remember. A smile spreads on their face and they say the words you dreaded they would say:
“Oh, that’s all right! I have read about that in a book, and now I will do this and that to you, because I have read that those things will make you feel better!”

Those things may be all sorts of things. Some of them may actually make things feel better. Some of them will make things worse. A lot worse.

And you start to protest. You say something like; “No, I understand metaphors very well, thank you. There is no need to avoid them.” You say something like; “No, seriously, I can eat bread without evolving into a ball of introspection.” You say; “Oh god, please. I have feelings. I promise. When you talk to me as if I was a small child it hurts my feelings.” You say; “No, you can keep the paintings on the wall; it’s the constantly turned on TV that is distracting to me.”

And they look at you, tilting their head slightly, still smiling and say the even worse words:
“No, I know about this. I will make things better. I have read that people like you can’t understand metaphors. I have read that people like you get distracted by having paintings on the wall. I have read that ordinary bread is bad for you. You will feel better soon. You will see. The book was even written by a person with your diagnosis, so it must be right!”

You can rarely talk any sense into people like that; they usually mean so well. They are completely one-tracked by a desire to help you that they forget that you are a real person. In the real world, real people have real feelings and real personalities. No matter how real the Asperger’s or the autism of the person who write the book is, no matter how confused the author of that book might get by paintings on the walls, the point is that it is how that person reacts. And that is all right. Let hir have white walls with no paintings on them. Or light blue walls. Or bright yellow walls. Whatever makes hir happy. But when I ask my helper where all the paintings went and they say they took them all down because they “read there should not be too many things on the walls because it is confusing for you,” I feel that I don’t even get to have any control of what happen to my surroundings in my name. No one ever asked me. I doubt they asked any one of those frequenting the place. They read about it somewhere, and they decided to “help us out”.

According to people like that, if you have a diagnosis, you are the diagnosis. You lose all right to having personal taste or personality. And you’d better not work in any way different from how they believe people like you should work. In the best case scenario they will just go on ignoring the differences and believe that you are just not yet aware about how they are right and that you will soon see the light. In the worst case scenario, if you don’t fit their ideas of how you should be, they may begin to doubt. If you do not fit into their stereotype they might figure out that you do not really have Asperger’s after all. And then the problem becomes the opposite.

“I cannot do this,” you say. “It makes me panic and stressed out.”
“Of course you can do it! You have arms, don’t you? Stop panicking, it’s not difficult. Stop it. There is really nothing wrong with you. You can do it if you want to. It will be good for you!”

In both cases, you are not a real person to them. They think that you are just making things up. Because you do not really know yourself or what would be good for you or not. But they think they know.

They read a book someone with something in common with you wrote once.

/pao – 15 mar 2012 – 14.40

2012
01.16

arranging and rearranging
find and hide and throw away
tidy and clean and dig deep
after trash-buried treasures
and forgotten floors

make room for new things
and old things reborn
make room to grow
throw out impossible dreams
in the face of
unrelenting reality
and keep the dreams
that do not harm

2012
01.10

(double halo)

Today when I went out for a walk in the grey, cold haze of really small snow crystals, I came down the hill and met this sight:

 

A rainbow.  It was so beautiful that I just had to stop and take a photo.  It was magical.  Then I decided to walk on, happy about the beauty that nature sometimes just throw at me.  I was not at all prepared for this when I came around the corner:

 

It was not an ordinary rainbow, it was a halo around the setting sun.  It literally robbed me of breath for a moment and I stopped dead just staring at it.  It was so beautiful I almost started crying.

 

And not only that; it was a double halo:

During this entire time, no one else had stopped.  I had seen no one look up at this magnificent sight.  I almost wanted to point at it and jump up and down in sad ecstasy and say; “Look!  Look!  Just look at that!”  It was not until several minutes later a mother came from the train with her child someone noticed.  But it was me it noticed at first; stopping, looking at me, noticing that I was looking up at something and then;

it grabbed its mother’s sleeve and said, in surprise; “Look mommy, the sun!  The sun!”

Its mother looked up in awe for a moment and then she hurried on.  To my knowledge, we were the only three that saw it until I met a person I know slightly and showed it to her through a window.

This makes me feel a bit sad.

 

The colours did not come out well in the photos, and they are a bit blurry.  But this was an awesome sight AFK.

 

This is one of the reasons I never get bored at watching nature; it always has something beautiful and ephemeral to throw at me and to others at well.  Just stop and have a look, and try to find it.

You can spare a minute a day, I promise.  And it will be worth it.

/pao – 10 jan 2012 – 00.23

2012
01.09

(night photos)

antennae

anennae

 

dance

dance

 

diving dragons

diving dragons

 

glyph

glyph

 

butterfly moon

butterfly moon

2012
01.08

(snippet)

She could no longer feel time passing.  The only thing indicating that time was not at a complete stop was the expiry dates on the milk slowly creeping forward, and this could just as easily be a conspiracy.