Autistic Pride in 2022?

Autistic Pride in 2022?

hello camera

This week’s photos are from a walk up the Precipice Path in Dolgellau, North Wales.

You can get prints of the photos in this weeks newsletter on my print store or you can tip me on Ko-Fi so I can buy film for my camera.

Autistic Pride

Being autistic means I am different to most people. In a world of Neurodiversity I am Neurodivergent. I have been the odd one out, the “weirdo”, the shy one in the corner all my life by people judging me by Neurotypical standards. In my later years I try to be emboldened by being seen as different. I feel recognised for who I am. In order to be ok with that I need to be proud of who I am. Who I am is someone who can talk endlessly about my passions because I care deeply about them. Who I am is someone who sees the world differently and asks questions about “Why that?” when something doesn’t make sense.

But am I proud? In 2020 I tried to answer that question for Autistic Pride Day.

Kinda feels egotistical to answer that with a yes. I have to be proud though. I have to accept myself for who I am and be ok with that if I am to be useful in the world. If I want to be a better photographer I need to be proud of my core personality so I can create better photographs because photography isn’t just about pressing the “Take photo now” button. It’s a self portrait.

So am I proud? I think I am. I wear a Pride Apple Watch strap as a symbol of acceptance and support for diversity. It takes time though and I’ve only been fully aware of who I am for 2 years. I’ve got 38 years to restructure in my head. It takes time.

2 years on and I mostly agree with that. By being ok with myself I can focus on the things that interest me which will lead me to make, hopefully interesting, photographs. I will stop worrying about what everyone else is doing knowing that as long as I’m being different I’m being true to myself which in turn makes me proud of my work. That’s the theory anyway. In practice it is hard to see a group of photographers standing in a good spot, getting good photos and remind myself how mine will be different. Good? Hard to say. Certainly different.

So am I proud? I’ve come to realise I’m the kind of person who would climb a mountain and get naked to make a statement about how ok I am with not being normal only to be completely broken by having to decide what to have for tea leaving me crying on a beach at the absurdity of my brain. I am proud of who I am but I am exhausted some days.

View from up a hill looking across the fields, hills and rivers of Gwynedd, North Wales. There is a large stately home in the centre.

hello world

View across the Welsh valleys of Gwynedd, North Wales.

helloooo nurse

Toxic positivity is bad. Yay for sarcasm.

In the present moment there are no issues, only peace. checks the news My mistake. It’s a shit show out there.

Moody atmospheric view across the hills and valleys of Gwynedd, North Wales.

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