My Story: My Understanding That I Am A Neurodivergent Has Changed Me As A Human Being

Image Credit: Joy Christan Jonathan

My Story: 'My Understanding That I Am A Neurodivergent Has Changed Me As A Human Being'

Joy Christan Jonathan was diagnosed with being neurodivergent at the age of 35. A big-time procrastinator, she often forgets to take care of herself. She suffers from Autism, ADHD and several sensory issues.

I was diagnosed as being a neurodivergent person at the age of 35; however, people overlook that since I am able to function normally for about 10 hours a day. There is no doubt that I am high functioning, and being high functioning is not easy because nobody gets to see the 2 hours of intense preparation beforehand of my mind racing or the 6-hour recovery afterwards.

I Have To Struggle Everyday

People think I'm not autistic because I do not meltdown. When I do have meltdown episodes, I am rude and unpleasant. I cannot do online or phone banking. I struggle following social media trends because a new feature has been added by the time I get the hang of it. I forget passwords, my appointments, forget to drink water and take my vitamins. I misplace and lose things frequently. I have sensory issues, and I can go three weeks without washing my hair, and I experience a complete physical intolerance to touch, light smells and noise.

I cannot ride a bike or drive a car. My balance is appalling, and I find eye contact painful, except with my family and close friends. My mind flies in different directions constantly. I can plan three things at once in detail; I hyperfocus and can stay fixated on one task and, at the same time, have trouble focusing. Initially, I purchased a lot of books and art and craft, and when the product reached home, my focus shifted from them. I buy things impulsively and hoard them without keeping a track.

I Have Autism, ADHD, Sensory Issues

A big-time procrastinator, I forget to take care of myself. My thoughts often overwhelm me, and I need to have a routine. I face difficulties following instructions until the person is incredibly specific. I am very bad at directions, cannot understand jokes and have a horrible time for laughing. Things are not always easy, and I cannot tell you how many times I wish my brain ran in normal patterns and worked like everyone else's.

I have Autism, ADHD, and sensory issues and understanding that I'm a neurodivergent have changed me as a human being. I am now kinder to myself; I accept myself, and I don't try to fit in anymore. I love that I'm different. I wish I could tell the little child in me that she was perfect just as she was, and she didn't need to change one thing about herself.

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Editor : Snehadri Sarkar
Creatives : Ratika Rana

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