Morphers Anonymous; What is ‘Self’

I am wondering if the female with Asperger’s Syndrome could also encompass a loss-of-identity-of-self element.

I have always had a hard time understanding my own interests, likes, wants, and needs. My desires become obscured and distorted based on my current love-interest. This could be a love of a person, as in friendship and/or romance.

I seem to morph in and out of existence based on my current lifestyle and interest. I can hold onto certain elements of self, primarily my special interests since childhood, e.g., writing, drawing, poetry, nature, animals, music, but other interests and ‘trademarks’ of my personality readily change without much effort and without me even knowing based on my interaction with another person.

Somethings that hold true and steadfast for my character and sense of self include:

Honesty
Integrity
Great Love and Passion
Processing
Lack of Manipulation
Lack of Game Playing
Intellectual in depth Processing
Tenderness
Kindness
Sensitivity
Intense Introspection
A Child-Like Heart and Spirit
Innocence
Hope
Trusting
Sharing
Giving
The Desire to Serve
The Desire to Make a Difference

The parts of my life that alter when I have an interest in another:

Spending less time on a past special interest or activity.
Focusing on new relationship, sometimes with nothing else seeming to matter, except pleasing the other person by becoming akin to their likes and interest.
Vast amounts of emotional energy spent on the person, in comparison to the amount previously spent on self or another.
Partaking in future planning regarding the person.
Over-analyzing and focusing on aspects of my appearance, habits, behaviors, and goals; effectually comparing myself to the other, and wondering in what ways my self could better reflect the other person.
Revamping of what I choose for entertainment, recreation, and sometimes food/drink, clothing, etc.
Taking on the likes and interests of the other person, including book, music, and movie genres, entertainment, social events and various activities.
Taking on mannerisms, dialect, ways of speech, or other unique characteristics of the person.
Taking on belief systems, philosophies and/or personality traits of the person.

This is usually not done at a conscious-level. Typically, I am blinded to my own behavior, justifying what I am doing with some mind-conditioning or logical sequencing, such as rationalization or total denial. This morphing differs in codependency, as I remain intact in my self-esteem and sense of worth. I do not enable. I have clear boundaries of what I will not tolerate or allow in my comfort zone. I maintain a sense of joy in my own life and accomplishments. But it is similar in codependency in my want to over-give, transform based on another, and my tendency to obsess, fantasize, and make the person more important in reality than he or she truly is. In some ways the person becomes like my god or sun, and I the dependent mortal or planet.

Even with all my growth and self-reflection, I still get caught in the pull-push state of wanting to be myself in completion and wanting to figure out how to be what another wants me to be. Even with this strong awareness, this morphing of who I am transpires without warning or clear indication, until I am in the transient state of a chameleon of my personhood.

This morphing is a common part of the female with Asperger’s condition; the female with Aspergers molds her own behaviors and mannerisms in a way that she believes will satisfy the need of her beloved.

The downfall in this behavior is foremost: losing self-identity.

The other issue at hand is the female with ASD cannot ever meet another’s expectations in completion, because the wants and needs of another individual (aka her ‘best friend’) are in constant transition.

It is important to note that this act of morphing is instinctual in nature to many females with ASD. She is seemingly programmed in the brain to morph based on attraction or interest in another human being.

I repeatedly try to transform my own ways and behaviors to meet the needs of another, without even realizing I am partaking in this behavior. Once I catch myself in this chameleon action, I pull back and wonder why I have once again fallen into the trap of losing self. From here I question the sense of self in all aspects, and become boggled by the concept of simply being.

During the morphing phase, I live my life through the eyes of one person. I see myself being watched by this someone at a distance. I see myself adapting, conforming, and molding in an attempt to fit some faraway expectation or goal, I have subconsciously created. I watch my own self through the eyes of someone else. I match my movements, choices, and even sometimes my thought processes to what I think this individual expects or desires from me. I do this without much awareness or analysis, much like a robot following a pre-instructed and installed program. There isn’t much thought to what I am doing or why I am doing it, beyond doing.

Usually this perspective, the way I interpret myself being ‘seen,’ and how I respond in word, thought, and action, shifts every year or so, depending on the duration of a relationship. Everything I do, I imagine and I believe is seen through the eyes of a human being beyond myself (boyfriend, lover, husband, best friend, boss). My movements, my words, my way of being, revolve around this someone beyond myself.

It is like constantly having an overseer observing me. I question would he/she behave like this? I ask, “Is this bringing me closer to his/her liking?” It isn’t as much a need for approval as wanting to match myself to this other. Interestingly, at the same time this morphing is transpiring, I still maintain my own self-esteem and self-love. I like who I am. I want to be me. But I somehow get lost in the process of befriending this high-interest person.

High-interest in the keyword and key point.

Without the high-interest, I am not drawn into the morphing and adjusting of self. With high-interest, my brain attaches, much like it does with a special hobby or activity, and I become a scientist dissecting the person, as if the person were a project. My brain’s natural ability to dissect, take apart, and rearrange pieces of a whole into a new whole takes over. I become a detective of self and other; again, not typically at a conscious level; though I have some awareness of what I am doing, a cloak to my full reality remains. This cloaking action resembles some sort of protective mechanism and functions the same way as in my high-interest projects, (aka: fixations). I cannot seem to pull myself out, or properly analyze and confront my own behavior, until the passionate interest has subsided; the stopping point/tilting point usually being a new special interest. I go from one to the other, a child on the monkey bars of a playground, not letting go of the one in hand, until the next in hand is firmly grasped.

Through this way of being, I lose track of who I am. Yet, I wonder if I ever was to begin with.

If I take time to process this sense of being, and the ‘whys’ of the way I respond in passion to another, I become confused in thoughts of ‘what is being?’ and ‘what is self?’ I have no idea of who I am, beyond space and matter, and a reflection of the universe. I am ever-changing and transitioning substance. I adhere to the string-theory, to ancient philosophies and belief systems—that of being nothing but the combined perception of others. In truth, I know a thousand others would have a thousand interpretations of this self I am, and in a year’s passing even these opinions would all transition. I am never stagnant, and awaken a new person not daily, but minute by minute. I have no general sense of self or of being. I am that I am. In essence I am nothing.

Perhaps because of the ‘no self’ theory, I transform without intention when fixated on another. Perhaps, like some spiritual teachers have professed, I am merely taking on the characteristics reflected in the person I am observing because I am only, and will always only be, a reflection. Perhaps, I am wired in a way, spiritually or biologically, in which I am not a solid form made to stay stagnant and unwavering; or perhaps I am more keenly alert and aware of the changes and transformations inside of me, to a point that the changes distract from me recognizing a fully forming personhood.

Regardless of my hypothesis, I get trapped in the cyclical repetition of morphing.

In the last season of inquiry, I have reached a new threshold, in which I have questioned: What do I want in another person? What makes me happy? What are my true needs?

The only answer I hear is: love

Beyond unconditional love and acceptance, (and beyond Maslow’s hierarchy of basic needs), I don’t understand needs.
Any needs, to me, seem obscure and border on self-based, ego-needs. Who am I to claim a need without at the same time delegating to another how I wish him/her to be or respond (change) in order to please and satisfy me? And what is it inside of myself that is not complete and satisfied in which I need another to fulfill me?

With these thoughts, I become entangled in trying to contemplate the very basic nature of self needs and self-identity.

431: Confessions of an Aspie Girl

Confessions of an Aspie Girl

1. I hate getting up in the morning. Why? It’s not that I don’t have the ability to like the day. I just don’t want to have to get up and do it all over again. I mean I just did the exact same thing the day before, e.g, shower, brush teeth, choose clothes, discard clothes, choose different clothes, stress about my food intake, wonder if coffee is good for me, stress over my next step—and man was it fricken exhausting! No one, well most people, has the slightest clue how much energy I exert just to be. I mean when I hear the words “be in the moment” and “stay present,” I am already thinking RUN! For me, being is like running up hill sideways with my eyes crisscrossed and my feet bound in piercing Velcro, while my arms are flapping to the beat of someone else’s heartbeat and I’m trying to recite the alphabet backwards. By the first hour of thinking and mundane activity, I am smashed. Surfer-punched smack off her surfboard and pounded into the rocks. Theme music in the background: WIPED OUT. And then, lucky me, if I conquer the day, at least a portion of the day, say 18.984 percent, then I get to retreat to the couch that has a permanent dent from my lounging hours, where I try to rest but end up, for the trillionth time, in some complex dialogue with a part of myself that really never learned to shut her mouth.

2. I like people but they bug me. Actually, I adore lots and lots of people, but I see way too much. I see past the nuances and suggestions and idioms and babble, and I grow so weary. I am thinking and pondering about approximately one hundred things and tangents compared to each singular concept another brings up in conversation. I am distracted by the webbing-style of my brain that largely resembles a graphic organizer big corporations use to plot out their schematics for the next decade. Trying to listen to a conversation in completion is an impossibility, unless I am in my Zen moment and steadily repeating each word said by my acquaintance back to myself and staring off with a peaceful tranquil demeanor. Even then, I am reviewing the rules of active listening and trying to recall at least a page of my Buddhist teachings. In the silence, I am baffled by all that my senses are taking in. I leap and run all over in my head, dissecting the molecular bits of a person. So much to chew off and digest that I am actually considering the act of investing in a pair of dark glasses—so dark I can’t see—so that at least one sense is blocked. Then I only have to deal with the distraction of the bombardment of various noises, odors, textures, and bodily sensations. At least with glasses I won’t be ice-skating about in thought regarding visual vomit, about to fall on my butt and shatter the ice, whilst distracted by the idiotic protruding mole on someone’s face reaching out and wanting to form a conversation with me. “Hi I am mole. I am big. I used to have a hair in me like a witch, but it was plucked out. Do you wonder why hairs grow faster on moles? Maybe you should Google it? What are the signs of irregular moles again? For a mole, I look healthy. Still ugly, though. I would have removed me. How much does it cost? I wonder if I have a soul, and where I would go if you burn me off. Hey, maybe you should listen to what the person who owns my face is saying.”

3. Forming thoughts hurts, but forming sentences is far worse. I connect rules to words. Yes, each word is alive and a willing or non-willing participant. Some words deserve center stage, depending on my mood, and some words…well they deserve the dank of a dark dungeon. I couldn’t say the word ‘vagina,’ until I was in my early-forties—which was another life time ago, because as you know I am effectually 39 forever. And words like fu** and other connotations that suggest what my boys were watching two spiders (likely) do on our window last night (interesting..couldn’t tell if they were eating each other or enjoying themselves) still makes me feel like I am in a library with my hair in a bun wearing a prudish ruffled blouse. Think Mary in the altered life of George Bailey in It’s A Wonderful Life. If you haven’t seen the movie, that really is the hugest mistake in your life. In constructing thoughts I run into constant roadblocks and detours. Case in point, my steering off the road to discuss a movie you should have watched twenty times by now, if you have an ounce of good taste in your bones. See how I judged you? That’s what I do with words. Is this one too provocative? Is this the best word choice? How does that word feel? He feels too fat, too heavy, too mundane, too cliché-like, too over-used, and so on. It’s not about perfection. The process is more akin to picking out the ground I want to walk on. The soles of my feet know that some foundations feel better than others. I mean I’d take clean laminate flooring over ten-year old carpet any day, and I’d much rather risk the residue on green grass then the debris on concrete, while shoeless. And I’ve gone off on tangent again, visualizing all the ways in which my feet can travel, and all the dangers flesh faces.

4. Life is fricken scary! Life doesn’t come with a guidebook or rulebook or anything, and all these grownups are trying to figure out what direction to go, what to say, how to be, what to do, and are pointing fingers this way and that, and sporadically jumping from one idea to the next, clinging to this hope, and then moments or decades later, another hope. And it confuses the heck out of me. Tears me open like an over-exposed vulnerable fish with her guts hanging out and seagulls hankering about for a ripe piece. I know enough to know I know nothing, and to watch all this chaos wobbling about like those weeble-wobble toys that don’t fall down, but get overwhelming annoying in their inability to go anywhere and do anything but remain stagnant, gets to the very bone of me. I feel nibbled upon and broken. I don’t want to be told what to do or how to be, but at the same time I want some almighty guru, higher-power, or at least Mother Nature’s henchman, to come down and point the real way. I am tired of people reinventing the right way and the wrong way, and proclaiming who is good and who is bad, and telling me what I can and cannot do, down to how I parent, who I spend time with, what I spend time doing, and worse what I spend time ingesting spiritually and mentally and physically. In truth, at times, I think humanity has reached an all-time low! I mean people have left the concrete physical examples of how to act and now are needling past the skin of others and dictating, preaching, and insinuating with sour-coated good intentions how people should form thoughts! I mean talk about instilling further fear. Seems like a diabolical plan to me: I know how to really inject terror. Teach people how their thoughts are bad. I mean, it’s not enough to teach them that they are bad, wrong, flawed, broken and in need of repair. Let’s indoctrinate them with how they are innately wired wrong in that their actual thoughts are imperfect! What a grand plan!”

5. I don’t know what I believe in. I just don’t anymore. I have read and processed way too much. As a child I used to pray every-night in an OCD manner: “Dear God, God bless my mom and dad, my cousins and aunts and uncles, my friends, and my enemies, and everyone I can think of. And please include everyone I can’t think of or am not remembering. I love them too, but I can’t remember them, but they are still important. Please include them. And if I am forgetting anyone else, please watch over them. And bless me too, and my animals and all the people I love and know and who love me and who don’t love me and who don’t know me…..” To cover all my bases, I asked Jesus into my heart when I was a young teenager, primarily because I was sleeping with a rosary around my neck with the lights on every night and warding of demons that were haunting me in my sleep. And primarily because life sucked so much in its confusion, unpredictability, and lack of security that I needed the Big Guy to come in and stand at the door to my heart. At least that way, when the aches of the world pounded on me, I had something/someone, imagined or not, to push back. Now, I have taken in so much clutter from the world that I am left confused and spinning. I have a natural instinctual desire to accept everyone and everything, to be open to forgiveness, to believe in others, and to love. So many religions don’t fit me; that is to say, if the religion was a substance it would feel, if ingested, as shards of glass, and, if worn, like an over-sized sixty-pound cloak of fur of which the shepherd of my flock had forgotten to shave. I just don’t know anymore, and strongly think we need an Aspie prophet to develop a new religion, that’s not called a religion, of course. Because religion is one of those words that munches at my eardrums.

6. Everything is alive. Geeze, I am so tired of caring about things. I mean things, literal things. Like when I go to discard of the peel of the potato. Crap, I am thinking, if I put this in the garbage he will likely end up in the landfill. He would much prefer to be in the compost pile where he is then able to turn into something else and nurture my future garden. I wouldn’t want to be in a landfill. You see, I have this natural tendency to apply my own emotions and experience to inanimate objects. And if you think that is bad, I also do this to most people and animals. I assume, from some part of my being (if I be) that others see and experience the world as me, even though I logically know they don’t. I still get caught up in the thoughts that my pain is another’s pain and that my agony is another’s. This adds some huge chains of ultra-super-charged responsibility onto moi! I mean, I hold the responsibility of the world. I am King Kong demolishing cities of insects, grass blades and potential habitats of living creatures when I partake on a stroll. I am a cruel demi-god slicing and dicing vegetables that I now know might have their own semblance of consciousness in the way they move and retreat from danger. I am this judge and controller of destiny: Off to the landfill for you onion skin! The truth is I know this is all nonsense. Until I read spiritual practices or ‘hippy’ life rules that actually reinforce my way of thinking, albeit at a much less complex and less mortifying degree. I know, I need a pill or a stiff drink, or something stiff, (yes, that’s sexual humor that makes me blush, but nonetheless a truism), to distract me from the cavernous rivers forging through my brain. I can see all the NTs out there (Neuro-typicals) shaking their heads and thinking, “Man, she thinks way too much. Just relax and chill.” If only! Like I choose to be this way. Like with my high intelligence I haven’t researched and entertained a thousand-plus techniques and manners in which to stop myself. I can’t help it. There is this black-and-white movie actor in my mind, with a hunchback and greasy black hair and spikey crooked teeth and pale, unattractive skin, (with a large distracting mole), screeching: It’s Alive!

7. I don’t like me, but I love me. Yes, this is a concept similar to when you have a relative you can’t stand to be around, and would never choose as a friend, and wish wasn’t born into your clan, or at the least you weren’t born into the clan, but you have this unfounded instinctual love that keeps pulling you in because she or he (why don’t we have a non-gender word yet?) is your blood. But it’s different, because I would choose me as a friend, and I do like to be around me, and I kind of think I am super cool at times. So that’s not a super good example. But I like it anyhow. A better example might be when you love your dog, but she does stuff that really messes up your sense of serenity; I don’t know, no names given; but let’s say she piddles when she is anxious, or brings in dead surprises through the doggy door, or digs up to find moles and comes in all muddy and tracks footprints through the house, or smells like last-week’s garbage left out in one-hundred degree weather, and you are way too tired and/or preoccupied to want to, yet, again, deal with the fluffy ball of love’s annoyances. That’s more like it—how it feels to live with me—like I am my own best friend who annoys me too no end at times, but at the end of the day is so warm and cuddly and loyal that I can’t help but overlook all the perceived failings and flaws and pain-in-the-butt doings. So really, let’s erase the first sentence of this paragraph, at least from our memories, kind of like our self-worth has been erased from our memories by big-business, and let’s pretend the first sentence reads: I love myself like I love my dog. I like to pretend.

8. I like my inner world more than my outer world. It’s safe in my head, for the most part. Well, not really, especially when I am looping, spinning, panicking, or feel like this time I am REALLY dying. Feel my heartbeat! But still, with all the slippery slopes, it still feels better than what’s outside of me. I don’t like all the judgment out in the world. I don’t like second-guessing; I don’t like first-guessing; or tenth-guessing. I just wish we all wore our hearts, integrity, and love on our sleeves. I wish that our individual attributes and way of being were accepted and that people were loved just for being. I wish that I lived in a forest with elves (nice ones) and fairies (nice ones) and that the whole world was peaceful. But at the same time, I understand the inner-workings of yin and yang and how opposites serve to accentuate the other, so that pleasure is pleasure, and happiness is happiness. I understand that in order to appreciate more of me and more of another, I am molded and chiseled. I understand to walk in this world in gratitude that I had to experience having less. I know these as truisms, at least truisms of this age. And I too know the concept of balance, acceptance, serenity, surrender, faith and trust. It’s just hard. Because so much of what I see is in contradiction to what is spoken and demonstrated in the world. At least in my mind I know what to expect, even if it’s chaos, even if it’s torture, it is predictable pain: not unexpected hurts inflicted on me by a society I have yet to understand. At least in my mind there are moments of intense fantasy that take me to another place, less filled with misfortune and misgivings. At least, inside of me, I can find the perfection, the love, the guidance, and the hope that the world keeps trying to dismiss and/or take away. I like it inside of me, curled up with the warm puppy, despite the smell, the responsibility, the duty. At least inside, the burden of the world isn’t leaning up against me, and I can hear the tender reassurance of a loving heart.

327: Ten Parts to My Heart

holy

Artwork by Samantha Craft 2/10/13

Ten Parts
I have ten parts to my heart
Ten parts that you take
Ten parts that you watch for
Ten parts where I ache
The runner is heavy, her breath out of wind
You take her up gently, and lift her to end
The mistress is surly, and tangled a lot
You take her in softly, untie all the knots
The witness is worried, her song out of reach
You take her beside you, the music you teach
The loner is hope-drained, her view rather bleak
You take her hand kindly, and starlight you seek
The lover is awe-struck, her emptiness grows
You take her eyes to you, and mend all her woes
The child is spinning, her thoughts moving swift
You take her mind off things, and offer a lift
The seeker is weary, so much truth to be found
You take her ear tender, and whisper no sound
The actor is drowning, she’s pretending to be
You take her dreams with you, and set them all free
The poet is hiding, her heart severed in two
You take in her pieces, and make her anew
The angel is crying, her fears come again
You take her pain to you, and call her dear friend

~ Samantha Craft February 2013

293: Backwards Appeal

good hair dayhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cVGYssHra2c

Yesterday I wore this fabulous red sweater.

I was feeling very confident, as I was having a good hair day, and my husband had saturated me with compliments, at least twenty since I awoke.

And after a hot sauna meditation and hot soak in dead sea salts, I was literally glowing.

With my cheeks rosy and love of self content, I set out to do errands. Time to redeem a gift certificate, a rebate check, and buy some food staples.

At my third stop, at the grocery store, as I was pushing my half-full cart down the snack aisle,  I felt an itchy sensation at the nape of my neck. I reached down, and found the sweater tag. My cheeks blossomed into a full crimson then.

And all at once a rush of fear came over me, as I realized my sweater was on backwards!

 I, quickly, without calling too much attention to myself, turned my cart around and made my way to the back of the store. Retreating into the bathroom, I had a good look at my sweater in the mirror. I gasped, while trying to laugh. But no laughter came.

The way the sweater was set, the back stitching in the front of me, I looked like I had two torpedoes jetting out.

Before, while dressing at home, I’d merely thought the way the sweater set against my chest was just the way the sweater was made, and that I ought not to have fretted about the design. I needed to get over my fears, and wear clothes without insecurity. Who cares if the cut of the sweater accented what was naturally a part of me? I had thought to myself.

 But now that I could tell for certain the sweater was on backwards, I thought for sure, people would have noticed, and been laughing, not only at my backwardsness, but at my pointy boobs.

Inside the store bathroom, still contemplating my silliness, I twisted the sweater around; only to find, that my under blouse, a little sleeveless black thing, was on inside out!

At this point I looked down at my boots, convinced I’d probably placed them on the wrong feet.

I know it doesn’t matter in the end. People at the crowded Big-Box Store probably didn’t notice, and if they did they got a good laugh. And I’m all right with giving others a good laugh. But I can’t help but think about those two older men who stopped me in my tracks in the grocery store, prior to my discovery; how they played dodge with my shopping cart, like we were two familiars partaking in a friendly game: “Try to get passed me with your cart!” Can’t help but think how ridiculous I must have looked with my front side all pointy and pronounced and all, as they tried to engage me in conversation and keep me from moving: me and my signature red chest.

It’s just plain crazy-making, the way I cannot dress my own body. Likely an after shock of having never liked or played with Barbie Dolls. I should have taken note, or at least practiced.

I still haven’t learned to stop praying for humility and release of pride. Seems I cannot go anywhere without being reminded of my unyielding humanness.

Here’s to red torpedo ladies, and all things fashionable.

May you, if and when you wear your clothes backwards, accentuate the positive.

It’s on backwards in this photo…heheheh Before I knew

good hair day

But You…

You are a flower that I cannot release

You stretch and root, your scent carried into the vein of me

I am your vase, your soil, your moisture, your sky

But you do not know me

I hold you day upon day, carry you where I go, smile at your beauty

I watch in admiration, as you unfold, as bud becomes bloom

You move where I move, bend where I bend, all the time unaware

Because you do not see me

Your vessel completes me, the fullness of you saturates

Your sweetness carries my every step closer to the heart of you

I reach to touch frail softness, nature’s perfection

But you cannot feel me

I turn to you in the darkness, cradling you at my side

I blanket you in the coldness, devouring the fire for your warmth

I comfort you in the rain, soothe to extinguish my own wants

But you cannot detect me

You scream in silence, and I am beckoned

I scream aloud, and you are lost

Together we collide, without ever joining

But you do not understand

I am your gardener, your life-giver, your equal, your maiden

You are my knight, my king, my answer, my calling

We are one in the meadow, rising together

But you do not recognize me

You sleep as if I am silence

You wake as if I am phantom

You speak as if I am death

And I remain flower wilted at your door

~ Samantha Craft 2012

265: The Panty Thing

dress-found

So, when the sales lady told me: “You can’t wear panties with this dress because of panty lines,” (photo above), I ought to have recognized I NEVER would be able to go to my husband’s work party without wearing underwear.

Still, I bought the gorgeous dress that fit me like a glove and also showed off all my lady parts, hoping I’d get gutsy. (I was going to write ‘grow a pair’ or ‘grow balls,’ but that just seemed plain ridiculous to write, when talking about a panty-free dress.)

My husband was with me when I tried the dress on at the boutique. He loved the dress. When I asked him about the shopping experience later, he chuckled and said, “Do you really think I could comprehend anything AT ALL  after I found out you would have to wear no underwear!”

So, as you can see, he was little to no help.

When I talked to my friend in England (after I bought the dress), she said: “I don’t think that’s such a good idea wearing no knickers to your husband’s work party.”

You think?

When I thought about creating an underwear-free zone under my dress, I was taken back in time to the months I had to share a small bed with my wrinkly snoring grandmother. She never wore underwear to bed.

Regardless of my panty-issues, with high hopes, I brought the body-hugging dress home.

The night before last, I spent an hour searching in the intimate undergarment department for stockings. I figured stockings would at least give me a layer. I found some nylons that made me gasp out loud. I really said: “EWWWW!” I didn’t know they made stockings that went all the way to the bottom of the bra line as to not show stocking lines. The photo of the woman was outrageously odd, like some bi-ped mermaid in a stretchy black see-through suit.

First no panty lines? Now no stocking lines? I was beginning to wonder whom I was hiding all these lines from and for what purpose.

As I looked around the department store, I found all types of signs that tried to remind me of my inadequacy.

I couldn’t believe all the weird contraptions: body suits that sucked in my fat, bras that pushed up my stuff, and other thing-a-ma-jigs I wasn’t sure what I’d do with, other than take photos to send to my friend, so we could bust up laughing together.

My favorite was the attire that read: “Gets rid of muffin top.” I didn’t even know clothes manufactures used that term. Oh, and one item promised: “Gives you instant confidence.” I thought, wow, I didn’t have to write this blog, I could have just spent $19.95, slipped on this nude-colored leotard thingy, and presto had instant esteem.

After all the “line” hiding I was supposed to do, I was surprised I was “allowed” to wear a bra. Until I saw these things called breast petals—tiny flower shaped Bandaids made to stick to boobs, or at least the tips of boobs. I just about lost my composure then. Why would I want Bandaids for my boobs? And, man, the peel-off factor, when all was said and done….Ouch!

I ended up buying three pairs of different style stockings to try on with the deemed “panty-free” dress.

At home I tried to wear stockings with the pretty dress. I tried really hard. And then I cried inside, as I couldn’t pull it off.

I felt as if I lost a part of me then: The panty-free, pin-up girl who never was. Sigh….

Luckily, I had the black little nun-like dress I first fell in love with a week prior to finding the pin-up dress! And as soon as I put the black dress on, I twirled inside with glee. For this dress I could wear panties with!

~~~~~~~~

The Party

When we pulled out of the drive, to head out-of-town for the party, I screeched: “Stop the car! I forgot my blankie! I can’t sleep without my blankie!”

My fifteen year old was kind enough to say: “What are you like five years old, Mom?”

I jumped out of the van, did a twirl, and shouted back sweetly, “No. I’m twelve!!!”

When we first arrived at the party, only the owner of the company, my husband and I were touring a section of the building (museum) together, as the rest of the party, some hundred people, had moved on into the other rooms. The whole time (some fifteen minutes with the owner) I kept thinking to myself: I’m so glad I wore underwear!

Thank goodness, I didn’t say my thoughts aloud to the company owner.

Imagine the scene: “My smile? Well, to tell you the truth, I’m just so happy to have panties!”

As it was, I kept saying to my husband all night: “I’m soooo glad I didn’t wear that other dress!”

He just nodded. But I could see in his eyes what he was really thinking: “You have Aspergers. You are processing. Thus the repetition of the same statement. However, I kind of wish you didn’t have panties on.”

As I was leaving the party for the night, a party that turned out to be very pleasant, a kind lady complimented my outfit, and said, “And look at those cute red shoes, like Dorothy’s shoes from the Wizard of Oz. Who wears red shoes anymore? So cute.”

I giggled, and replied, “You know these shoes are a funny story. You see, I bought them to go with this clingy pin-up-girl dress, but I was too embarrassed to wear it and had to return the dress, but I kept the shoes.”

She smiled.

I was careful not to bring up the panty thing.

I felt so very twelve, so very pleased, and so very happy for my panties.

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