A poem for dad

My next entry will not be slating or saying anything much other than how proud of my dad I am for fighting his cancer with the bravery and dignity he has. As many people will know, I have a passion for writing poems as it helped me deal with things in my life such as bullying and the diagnosis of my autism. I wrote the following poem the day and the day after I found out dad had cancer. Nearly 3 months later I feel I want to share it with people. To me this is truly how I feel about it all.

December 8th

I heard some bad news today, something that made me scared,
Today I found out my dad has cancer; it was something I had always feared.
I knew many people that passed away because of this evil cell,
Yet I know of some that beat it, and of course turned out well.
The fact that my dad is sick, just completely blows my mind,
When this poison is inside of him, and the cure they cannot find.
My mum is really upset, and doesn’t know what to do,
My sister cries herself to sleep and sometimes I find myself doing it too.
I know I have to be strong, and my prayers are always said,
But the question is: Does anyone really hear me when I’m lying there in bed?
What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger, that’s why I always have hope,
But with each passing day that it’s on my mind, I find it really hard to cope.
I promised myself that no matter what, I would stay strong for my dad,
His feelings he does not show really well, but I know that he is sad.
I know our fate is in your hands God, but please have mercy on his soul,
Hold his hand and watch over him, as his treatment he will soon undergo.
Help him through this struggle, as he is precious to me like a pearl,      
God, please listen to our prayers, my dad is the rock of my world.

Thankyou for reading this,

AR

Personal demons

Throughout my life I’ve faced my insecurities, just as most people do, but to focus on everything and to re-evaluate my life regularly due to low self esteem and self worth due to several reasons, was dam difficult. The feeling of looking forward to going to bed and dreading waking up for numerous years on the bounce was horrible. I felt that the only time the mental pain stopped was when I was asleep and safe. Even when that front door was locked, I felt that the demons both mental and in human form, were going to come and get me and hurt me. Contemplating suicide from the age of 13 just isn’t right morally and the issues I went trough put me under that pressure.
Name calling for nigh on 6 hours a day for 5 days a week, drove me to crazy thoughts. It may not seem like much to some people who live by the old saying of “stick and stones may break my bones but words shall never hurt me” but it still hurts now. Some of the chants and names I was called still echo though my mind regularly. “Perfect” was a song which was changed into a song to insult me a lot. “You are nothingggg you’re Ben Tipton” was a favourite of some of the bullies. I’ve tried and tried to extinguish it from my mind, but it’s just not going to happen unfortunately.
Mental demons of constant self punishment and always putting myself down, did me no good what so ever. Anyone who knows me, will know I always stare at the ground and look down a lot. Even know when I’m a stronger person, it still happens. It took soo much to hold my head up high and be proud of who I was. Counselling for me was just a chance to get out of a lesson and be away in a safe zone from the demons of all capacity, and it usually got me out of maths which wasn’t a bad thing!:)
I’m not afraid to express my feeling these days and make people aware of how hurtful some people can be and what I was put through. I felt I was made to feel like an outsider on numerous occasions and if anything was said by someone else and I repeated it, it was made out to be that I said it in the first place and I only said it. Suppose that’s how people viewed me. Pick on the people who were already picked on as it was the norm and easy to do so. I believe that fighting these demons and my brain saying “no” a lot, and trying to make me give up on myself was pretty crap. Even now when I fail at things, I put myself down and slate myself. Do I believe that I would still do that if I wasn’t put through the torture that I was? Not at all.
People will read this and think many things both positive and negative and to tell the truth, I hope people understand why I’m doing this.
Thanks for taking the time to read this,
AR

Support

Haven’t posted for a while due to being busy and having family things going on. Walking home from work today and I thought about how much support have I actually had from professionals in the industry and how much local support there is for autistic people.
In terms of personal support, my friends and family have been brilliant and have accepted it. Some quicker than others, but all the people I care about, have actually accepted me and have supported everything I do and have done.
In terms of local support, there is only 1 group of people who regularly meet up and do things. It was through one of the members of staff from this company who got me diagnosed privately. I haven’t yet been to one of this meet ups due to not having the confidence to do so, but I’m sure that one day I will. Other than that, locally there isn’t much there. I’ve personally found that the national autistic society have supported me more through emails and phone calls and it was through them, who suggested maybe I do a diary or something. I’m not one for diarys etc, but believed that if I deliver something for everyone to see, hopefully people can seek comfort in this and understand that there is support there for them through fellow autistic people.
Nationally there is much better support through things such as forums and skype groups. I am a member of 4 forums and regularly look at them and sometimes comment on them. Through doing that, people have read my blog and gave me great feed back, in particular a young 15 year old lad who’s loves sport like me, and wants to pursue a career in the sporting industry. If this blog only helps to inspire or persuade 1 person to follow their dreams, well I believe it’s a success. I contemplated doing a YouTube channel but i simply don’t have the time to edit it all nor the equipment. To speak to other autistic people is great for me personally and we kind of bounce off each other sometimes which is brilliant. Some people have said that the best support comes from people like yourself, and that is truly right in this instance.
Work have been supportive and understanding if my quirks and difficulties which allows me to focus and make sure I do the best job I can despite my issues. I was incredibly reluctant to say at first but once I found out the person who did the job interview was someone who I knew and who was aware of my issues, it was best to come clean. Someone who I work with looks after me very well and I kind of see her as my work mum which always puts a smile on my face. Someone who I was speaking to for a while about my dad’s issues and supporting me through out it all, actually realised she had known dad for a good 25 years but only realised once I mentioned his name and where he worked.
My plan to go back to college in September is still there and I hope the support at scat is better now than when it was 2 years ago. I’m determined to make a success of it this time, but I will need proper support mechanisms in place.
To sign off, all I can say is thankyou for reading this and the great feedback I’ve had off both the autistic society, friends and just people in general. I don’t expect everyone to like what I put, but no one will like everything everyone does in life,
Until next time,
AR

Autistic Stereotypes

The diagnosis of autism brings many stereotypes along with it. “Retard” “Weirdo” “Freak” the list could go on! The fear I had inside me of telling people about it, was incredible. I was scared to tell the people close to me as I didn’t want them to think differently or bad of me due to it.
Something that low functioning autistic people have to suffer with is when people just stare at them on the street as they act or look weird. For me I’d be lying if I didn’t say I did that when I was much younger 8-10ish as they didn’t appear to look like what I believed was “normal” at the time. They said 90% of people in the world have some sort of autistic symptoms in their lives, but this far from means they’re autistic.
The Undateables on Channel 4, has certainly changed people’s perceptions on the issue and I for one am proud to have it. Yes, it does make life difficult at time, as expected but I just try and get on with things. I believe that every person who just stares at them,even though we live in a society which accepts autism, are just simply horrible. The old phrase “it’s rude to stare” sums it up pretty well.
I’m not setting out to offend people by this post at all or annoy people but for me, I just wish that allow society accepted all disabilities and types of autism in particular. Autism UK are brilliant and campaigning and I have received support from them on the phone and email which has helped me massively, so I can only thank them for it.
I never really wanted to make this a long post so I will keep it short,
So until my next post, thankyou for taking the time to read this,
See you all soon,
AR 🙂

Refereeing

After a while out due to Xmas break, bad weather and spending time with dad, last Saturday I came back with a nice game at under 13 level who have the technical ability of 15/16 year olds if not more.
A brilliant 4-4 draw on a big pitch allowed me to test my fitness and test my new heart rate monitor from Decathlon.co.uk. Brilliant website with quality things at cheap prices!:) highly recommend them.
Pretty happy with my own personal performance despite being in pain with Chronic toothache which thankfully has now been sorted!:) well kinda.
It’s been an interesting weekend for officials in the UK though and I find that i watch the refereeing quality these days rather the football.
Still doesn’t get rid of my love for the game despite abuse that referees receive. Aiming to get back in the adult game consistently as better money and it’s what I have to do to succeed in the game.
Promotion is key to my development and with the right attitude and dedication I’m sure I can do it. I have great mentors in Jack Wildman and some old guy down my road who says he used to be ex football league line.
So to finish off this short entry, I look forward to watching the officials Saturday as it’s certain to be a tasty game.
AR