Follow Me

Are you a leader or a follower?



It’s funny how
recovery didn’t bring
love or light.
It didn’t aright
all I perceived
wrong with me.
I didn’t join a yoga class
or lose this fat ass.
I’m not footloose
or fancy free.
No one’s praising my gutsy
path to wholeness.
I’m still a hot mess.
Even though I come off mean
I’m actually the most caring
person you’d ever meet
if only you could speak
neurodivergence
or I could speak “normal.”
I won’t talk to you
but I will to your kid;
unlike you they see me as is
and they’re cool with that.
Same with your dog or cat.
Despite all that I lack,
you follow me down this path,
saying all the while you despise me,
yet you can’t look away.

24 thoughts on “Follow Me

  1. I’m neither a leader nor a follower. I’m a loner. I have been all my life.
    I’m a writer and I host a Read & Critique room via Zoom. Everyone else in the room is neurotypical. I’m the only one who’s neurodiverse. There’s one woman in the room who is a very good writer, but she hasn’t gotten the knack of ‘show don’t tell’ yet and I’m trying to show her what it means and why it’s so important.
    Today I tried to tell her that if you want your readers to really feel and connect with what you are writing, the best way to do that is to write in simple, direct sentences. Don’t muddle up your writing with all these fancy $10 words. Write like you talk.
    Everyone in the room knows I have Asperger’s. I told her and the others in the room that those on the spectrum speak more directly and – as a writer – that’s how I write as well. The more plainly and directly you write, the faster, and more effectively, you’ll get your readers to connect with you. I also told her that, depending on what you’re writing, you can throw in a lot more $10 words. Anyway, I told her if she wants people to connect with what she’s writing (she’s writing a memoir) she needs to write plainly and not worry about perfection. Then I said to her, “Pretend you’re on the spectrum while writing.” and we all laughed.
    I wish I could elaborate more, but there isn’t enough space and I don’t want to turn this into a book. I guess I mentioned this because you touched on the differences in how we talk (or write) compared to the way neurotypicals talk.
    As far as coming across mean goes, I’m always getting called out for that. I have a deep voice, as well as a strong voice, plus I don’t smile. I can laugh because it’s a burst of energy coming out of me. I can only feel strong emotions. Smiling is too delicate for me to feel. That’s what makes smiling uncomfortable. So, all these elements together give people the impression that I’m angry.
    I love these women and we get together every Monday and have a chat session where we talk about anything and everything under the sun. It’s only two women and myself. We’ll even video chat at other times if one of us needs to talk or is having a bad time.
    I don’t feel that I lack anything. In fact, being on the spectrum has enhanced my awareness.
    Your last sentence, “….you follow me down this path,
    saying all the while you despise me, yet you can’t look away.” It made me think of a gross accident happened on the side of the road. We know it’s repulsive, yet at the same time, we are still drawn to it.
    Jen, I’m sorry for rambling. It seemed like the appropriate response to this post. Not so much now. Oops! I just thought of another point I wanted to discuss… “Kelly shut up now!” 🤐🙄😁

    1. I love your comments because a) you take the time to share them, which is quite the gift from someone with ASD, and b) I think if I met you in person this is how we’d talk to each other, as opposed to how we talk to many people.

      1. Semantics. We can agree to disagree. I write because I love the process. My blog was set up by a friend years ago to promote my first book. Profits help animals. If someone follows my blog that doesn’t automatically make me a leader. Why aren’t I just part of societal give and take and not defined as leader or follower. How you perceive me doesn’t make it a reality for me.

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