March 9th, 2018
“School is an absolute nightmare as an autistic person with a speech impediment, bad hearing, bad eyesight, the attention span of a 5-year-old, and horrible memory.”
“Natalie, you still gotta bring the sheet.”
“Shee…sh…sh…sheet? What sheet?”
School is an absolute nightmare as an autistic person with a speech impediment, bad hearing, bad eyesight, the attention span of a 5-year-old, and horrible memory.
Some of the worst day-to-day awkwardness includes:
- Not recognizing most of my classmates when walking into the classroom and being confused when ones I do recognize are absent
- Having to be reminded at least 3 times to bring a sheet and still forgetting it anyway
- When somebody starts talking to me and I don’t know wtf to respond
- Having to constantly ask someone to repeat what they just said, several times
- Always having to repeat myself because of my slightly slurred, very fast speech
- Not being able to tell a joke without it being ruined by a stutter
To illustrate how bad it can be, I’m just gonna drop the most horrifying, most embarrassing situation(s) that actually occurred just before Christmas.
In my boarding school, I participated in what we call an “Elfing” (loosely translated from German), where everyone is assigned a person they can buy a small gift for.
As soon as I was assigned my Elf, I knew this was going to be a disaster. I barely knew the girl, and none of the other girls had any idea what I should get her. So, what was the best way to handle such a situation?
Well, certainly not my way, because I ended up procrastinating buying it, until, eventually, I forgot about it completely. And as the day of the Christmas celebration rolled around and everyone exchanged presents, she was the only one left without a present. I apologized profusely, and she was fine with getting her present after the holidays.
After the celebration ended we walked out of the hall, everybody grabbed their jackets, and we went back to our rooms. Despite the disaster, I was in a good mood and started writing into my diary. Eventually, I was really focused and kinda zoned out.
An announcement was made over the speakers. Something about a missing jacket. “Looks like some idiot grabbed a wrong one”, I thought, quickly forgetting all about it again as I was so invested in my writing.
At about 10:30 pm, a teacher suddenly barged into my room. “Hey, do you have the jacket?”
I was dumbfounded for a few seconds. “Ah yes, the jacket. Uh, no.”
I watched her as she picked up “my” jacket, turned it around a few times, and then started yelling at me.
Turns out, it was in fact not my jacket. I was the idiot who had grabbed the wrong one.
I was later told that the girl who the jacket belonged to was going to fly home to Spain two days later and that all her stuff was in her pockets: her phone, her wallet with her passport, her credit card–everything. And that she cried the whole evening on the verge of a panic attack until her jacket was found.
And who was that girl the jacket belonged to?
It was my Elf.
The girl whose presents I forgot, and now I was almost the reason she couldn’t go home for Christmas.
You know, there are days like these where you wish the ground under your feet would just open up and swallow you, never to be seen again.
Hopefully, the girl had a nice Christmas with her family, after all that shit.
Never gonna “elf” again though.