There is one particular weekend each year, when someone says "have a good weekend" I can Fairly confidently say "yes, I will" ... not specifically because of the Craft Fair, but because included in that is the Canberra Quilters exhibition :)
I generally manage to enter at least one quilt, sometimes a Few ... This year I entered Four ... and, surprisingly enough, I actually got them all Finished in time for delivery day (just! - there *might* have been some Frantic last minute sewing involved, as is usual For me :)
The Craft Fair/Quilt exhibition actually goes For more than just the weekend - it is also on the Thursday and Friday, but I generally can't go on those days because I am at work (as was the case this year too) however on Saturday and Sunday usually Find me there For the whole day, either wandering around looking at quilts or checking out the vendor stalls, and buying something or another that I probably don't really need (although this time I bought a few buttons and charms' and a pack of Fat quarters - which are 1/4 of a metre of quilt Fabric - and I Found some wooden star shaped beads, there were only 2 packets left, but if there had been more I would have bought more because I had been wanting more For a while - they are the same as the ones I used for the Fidget bracelets I posted about a Few months ago - I had Forgotten where I got them From ... I guess it was at the Craft Fair last year :)
I had started typing about my Exhibition Entries as my E post for ABC Wednesday
... but I kind of never got around to copying it in to blogger (From the notes app on my iPad, where I typed it) and Editing it ... but I did post something Else For that, over on my Wordpress blog - which I created a Few years ago, and decided to Experiment with again, to see if it works better than Blogger ... that post is at https://aykayem.wordpress.com/2017/08/09/everything-is-starting-to-make-sense-now/
Anyway ... I decided to copy a big chunk of the E stuff into this post, because kind of Fits nicely here:
... and Extremely surprised and happy ... I Entered 4 quilts in the Canberra Quilters Exhibition ... and one of them got a second prize!
I actually found out I had won a second prize a few days ago, while I was Entertaining myself, being Energetic, and just a little bit crazy, taking photos in the wind and rain, on top of Mt Stromlo, after having gone on a bushwalk all morning, had coffee, and then walked up 2 other smaller hills to find Geocaches :)
I would include a photo of it here ... Except ... In my usual Extremely disorganised state (Executive Function is not one of my strong points :) I Ended up finishing the last of the stitching on one of them at about the same time as I needed to walk out the door to go and deliver them ... and I only just made it in time ... and I didn't take photos of the quilts before I left home because inside my house is a bit dark and outside there are patches of bright sunlight with weird shadows in all the wrong places, so I had figured I would take photos at the Canberra Quilters rooms, when I got there to deliver the quilts, as the lighting is better for photos there - a lot more Even ... But when I arrived, the people checking and signing the quilts in were ready to head home because the heating had not been working all day and they were freezing, so I didn't get a chance to take photos ...
I was hoping to be able to take photos today, when I was there helping hang the exhibition. .. but, after the Extremely frustrating and difficult task of organising to work some Extra time Elsewhen, I order to Extricate myself from work slightly Early, I had just headed off and driven on,y a short way down the road when I was called and told threat the hanging was done, so I do t need to go ... so ... I Expect I will be Finding a way to include my quilt photos in an F post next week :)
Of course I Forgot to actually Finish and post that ... but now I have taken some photos of the quilts I had in the exhibition, so I can Fiddle with those so they look ok and put them in here For you all (the 2 people who might read this? lol) to see:
(I also stole my descriptions, From the online catalogue (a First this year - they used to do a printed one), in case they are too hard to read on the signs, in the photos.)
Falling apart... and putting myself together again 84 x 132 cm
Andrea made this quilt at the various drop-in sessions in the Canberra Quilters rooms, from scraps she picked up from ‘the free-to-a-good-home’ bucket. Coming in and sewing this and other things was good therapy while she was off work, recovering from a stress disorder.
Crosses? or Plusses? 101 x 101 cm
This quilt was made from blocks done Canberra Quilters Modern Quilt Group meetings. The name means that, sometimes, things that seem like ‘crosses’ (such as unfortunate events) can turn out to be ‘pluses’ – it all depends on how one looks at life.
Late Bloomer (finally finding myself) 50 x 70 cm
Having spent most of her life feeling like she was fighting an invisible enemy, this year, at age 54, Andrea was diagnosed with Asperger syndrome. This was actually good news – rather than having missed her prime, she can now be a late bloomer and be happy being herself.
Whatever Happens...Happens 30 x 26 cm
Draw a rough idea; find fabric; draw a neater design, but totally change it; change fabric; change design a bit more; do nothing for three weeks; submit entry form; start making quilt. Yes, that is how someone whose life has gone a bit haywire does things!
And ... this one is not mine, nor is the photo (I forgot to take one on my phone, so I "borrowed" this one from the Canberra Quilters Website - this one also won a prize), but I did help make a tiny bit of it - I was at the meeting where we sewed the blocks, and I think I put together about 4 blocks, using fabric someone else had, because the type/colour fabrics we used were something I don't actually have in my stash ... I can't actually remember what fabric I used, which makes it a bit hard to pick out which blocks ... or if they actually even ended up IN there ... sigh
Kross Kut Kaffe 169 x 154 cm
Members of the busy Canberra Quilters Modern Quilting Group contributed some Kaffe Fassett and low volume background fabrics. Some fun and creative collaborative piecing and cross-cutting revealed a chaotically intriguing and colourful modern quilt.
I did make my own Cross Cut quilt too ... but it is still only a top ... I wanted to enter it in the exhibition, but it only fitted in the same catagory as 2 of my others, and we could only enter 2 quilts in each catagory ... besides ... I still have not worked out how the heck I want to actually quilt it ... or when I will actually get around to it ... lol
Because I don't still have the photo on my phone, and can't find it quickly on my Google photos online - here is a screenshot of my post on Instagram - which is where we found out about this design :)
(if you have Instagram and type in that # you will see a whole lot more, and I found the link to the instructions in there too ... not that I really followed them that exactly or anything ...)
My oh my, how things have changed since I wrote my first post on https://aykayem.wordpress.com/ !
(which is where I posted this, a few days ago, and where I might keep blogging, because Blogger is getting really really annoying :)
At the time I started that Wordpress blog, I (thought I) was happily married, I seemed to have a good life, and a job that even though it didn’t pay to well, it was one I liked … and the hours were good and the pay was enough with what my husband earned as well … I thought my life was relatively normal … and I had a place in the world, even if I achieved nothing else in life, it now didn’t matter, as I was the mother of my children 🙂
Maybe I was not quite where a younger me had hoped and dreamed I might be, but it was ok …
… but I was not ok … I guess I never really was … that started to become all too evident when things started to unravel … I guess my life had been unravelling a bit for some time … but the first I noticed anything wrong, apart from a niggling feeling that I wasn’t totally happy, but I couldn’t work out why, was the day my (now ex) husband came home early from work and announced that he was leaving me, as he packed up his things – said had decided we would be happier apart … turns out he was actually right about that … just an … interesting … way of doing things …
At the time I then realised that things had not been right for quite a while … but at that stage I just thought it was him, and the fact that we had not been right for each other … we weren’t … but it turns out there was a lot more to it than just that …
I probably don’t need to do a whole long blog post all about what happened next/since then … I blogged it
here ... at aykayem.blogspot.com … and I think I am going to copy those posts in
here, to this
to my Wordpress blog, if it works … (By all means, feel free to follow that link and go and read them all)
… except I will say that when he left early in 2013, I realised I had not been happy for quite some time, and I started picking up the pieces of my life, and rebuilding … I cleaned up, packed up, and sold “our” house, and bought and moved to my own house, and I was looking for a better job … I was told I was coping really well, and I felt like I was doing fine … but there was one crucial price of the puzzle missing … in fact it had been missing for many, many years … and things stopped getting better, and started getting worse … until last year, when I started to realise that something was not right, but couldn’t work out what I was doing wrong, and I spiraled into a mess of anxiety and depression, and ended up falling apart …
But now, this year, at 54 years of age … I have found that missing piece of the puzzle that I am …
… after a lifetime of feeling alien and different and confused, I have finally found somewhere I fit in, somewhere I belong – and I am actually happy to say that I have joined the ranks of the “late diagnosed Aspies”
Yes – I – who went to university, served in the Army, married and had kids, became involved in all sorts of stuff in the community, and has worked in the same job for about 18 years, until I finally “broke” – am actually Autistic …
… and I am now in the … interesting … process of finding my true self 🙂
Everything for Blogger, it seems ... Which is annoying me no end... So feel fred to ignore this and/or just go follow the link at the bottom :)
...several attempts to save posts as drafts and have either the Android or iPad app not lose them is annoying... especially when I only have to do that because the apps don't do things I need to do (simple things like adding links or putting photos where I want them) but the on-line editor does not work properly on either Safari or Chrome on my iPad... Which is why, last week, I decided to try posting the [now not] below post on WordPress... It worked ok :)
So... now trying to decide if I should just blog there...
I also tried to post this [the post this WAS going to be] yesterday and the Blogger app lost it... currently arguing with blogger again... I copied in the text from WordPress, and a couple of the photos, again, and saved it as a draft, on my phone ... and have just logged in to blogger on the Web browser on my laptop... Which doesn't think it exists... so I am adding this whinge, on my phone... and am about to see if it will lose it, or still not show up in blogger on my laptop, or actually work...
Nope... not working... think the photo links were broken too... gave up and deleted it because I can't be bothered making it work... I might try again doing it all on my laptop... but in the meantime, or if Blogger won't even do that... the WordPress post is at https://aykayem.wordpress.com/2017/08/09/everything-is-starting-to-make-sense-now/
... now I just have to work out the idiosyncrasies of that particular platform and make that blog look a bit better... sigh...
... Specialists and Therapists and a case manager or 2, a Rehabilitation Provider, and a Lawyer, and who knows who else I have forgotten/am not yet sure about, who I can add to the list of people I have had appointments/met/etc with lately ... or might be seeing soon ...
In the last 12 months I think I have seem more medical professionals than the whole rest of my life ... maybe not quite, but it sure feels like it ... I seem to have been plunged into a whole new world, that I knew next to nothing about ...
So why am I Drowning in Doctors/etc? ... Long story ... which involves falling apart, and then being Diagnosed with a Disability I Didn't know I had (and have had all my life) and a mental health Disorder that I don't quite know how long I have had, or how long it will last ...
(If you want to know more, you can Delve into some of my last few blog posts - most of them explain a bit more about all that :)
I guess the positive side of being Diagnosed as Autistic/Aspie, and also Diagnosed with "Adjustment Disorder with Anxiety", is that I can have a lot of fun trying to Describe myself :)
... which is a pleasant change from my school/teenage years when other people had fun Describing me ... and most of the Descriptions/names were rather Derogatory (Dumb, Dopey, Disturbing, Disgusting, ... and that is only one letter of the alphabet! ... Doing D words because that is the letter we are up to with ABC Wednesday
[Later edit: Well, we were when I started Doing this post ... being busy, then Blogger not playing nice, has meant I seem to have missed the Deadline ... but now that I have Done this post I am going to "Deliver" it to my blog anyway ...]
At school, I also got called retard, and a few other things that meant much the same thing...
Mind you ... I Did Do a few crazy things to earn some of the names I was called ... like eating raw sausages in front of everyone else (as in a whole school of about 800 students!) who were waiting for the end of year BBQ to be cooked, always picking up creepy crawlies, and taking home the lens out of the eye of the mouse I Dissected in Science class ... not to mention turning up to school every day for who knows how many weeks in grade 6, wearing a pair of antennae I had made out of wire ... and also still wearing them to quite a few other places for quite some time after that ... because my hero was not someone most people liked, like Roy Rodgers or Batman or Barbie or Superman - it was Uncle Martin from the TV series My Favourite Martian ... because he was an alien having to cope with being stranded on the wrong planet, and I could identify with that feeling :)
So ... How should I Describe myself?
Maybe "Delightfully Different"?
Will that Do?
(I think I WAS going to use that for the title of this post, but I changed my mind :)
Better than "Disturbingly Different" which, I think, is probably how the other kids at school saw me :)
... and how *some* people still see me now.
Damn ... I seem to have written yet another post that is probably not very interesting ... So ... Here is ... NOT a photo of a nearby Dam, where I often walk my Dog ... and a photo of my Delightful Dog - his name is Diesel ... he even has a Twitter account - @DieselDoggle :)
The 2 Differnt things I spent an hour trying to Do, to add those photos - Didn't work ... So I had a look what was already on my iPad and found a Different photo of Diesel, from almost a year ago, sleeping on my Deck :)
Shhh ... Don't Disturb the sleeping Doggy's Delightful Dreams :)
I gave up on trying to add the other photos that I was going to put in here - because I got sick of arguing with Blogger trying to put them in there from Google photos ... Neither the Android app or the iPad app do all the things I need to actually write a blog post and include a hyperlink and add a photo, and the editor on the website doesn't work properly on my iPad ... in Safari or Chrome ... and I just spent over half an hour adding a photo and editing this, hit the post button and the stupid effing blogger app crashed, signed me out, and lost all the changes - ahrgh! - might be time to move my blog elsewhere? I guess I could copy all my posts over to a Wordpress blog I have, but don't use, and then keep on posting to Wordpress? Pity, because I used to like blogger, when it worked for me ... and moving a blog is a pain ... but posting to blogger has now become more of a pain than moving my blog is likely to be ...
... I will try and post about something a bit more Exciting for the letter E ... hopefully in a couple Days time - a bit Earlier than I am Doing this D post :) ... I actually Do have something in mind already ... something to Do with a quilt Exhibition I Entered some quilts in ... something I never Expected, and am not only surprised and Excited about, but also Extremely happy :)
Actually I found out about the thing I am happy about while I was up on Mt Stromlo taking photos in the freezing cold wind and rain, which is probably part of the reason I then ended up taking selfies while Doing a happy Dance in the Destroyed Dome of a telescope ... I was going to say it was Disused - but it Definitely isn't - it seems to be the Done thing to use it to take portraits, wedding photos, photos of motorcycles, and even to have concerts in ...
I also took a Different photo (Didn't use it here because the movement made it a bit Distorted) where I set the self timer and twirled around until it took the photo ... and ended up feeling rather Dizzy!
(Erk - a slightly Disturbing feeling - lol)
There are also some other things I thought about putting in here, but I Didn't ... I Decided that maybe I shouldn't say them yet ... partly the "if you Don't have anything nice to say, Don't say anything" thing :)
Also - partly because they are a bit Depressing ... or just Don't really fit ... or require me to Delve in to a lot more Details than I want to go into right now ... and I want to Do a Decent job of explaining a couple of other things, in their own posts, maybe :)
... somehow I Definitely Don't think I can/should really go into too much Detail quite yet, about the Disillusionment of being in the situation I am still in at the moment with work, where all the "red tape" etc. means that things are still happening at the speed of Dark ... let's just say that I am not the only person who is Disturbed and Disgusted at the Dreadful way some things have been/not been Done ...
... One thing I Do want to eventually write something (more) about is my newly Discovered Disability, and the "Delights" of being *almost* normal ...
Catching up with all the stuff I have been trying to get done? - probably never going to happen ... but hopefully I will get myself sort of a bit more organised ...
Catching up on blogging ... also, something I will probably never keep up with ...
But Catching up on sharing what is going on with me/in my head/etc - is something I Can try and do for you now ... all one or 2 of you who actually read my blog posts :)
This is also my Contribution for http://abcwednesday.com/
... which is up to letter C (I have missed a few - oops - another thing I Can't Catch up on if I miss it - and a Couple hours later and I would have missed being able to add my link for the letter C too - I really should be Doing a D post now [er - actually, I SHOULD be sleeping - oops :] ... might Do something (Different?) for D in a Couple of Days ... If I don't get too Distracted - lol)
So where have I been?! - I kind of got busy going to Adelaide for a couple of weeks (and Catching up with some family members I had not seen for many years ... In some cases not since I was a teenager! Also revisited places I used to go as a Child) Then I came back, and Continued my "graduated return to work" (am back to my normal hours now) and kept busy keeping busy ... Geocaching, quilting, etc etc etc ... and reading library books, blogs, etc about Autism and Aspergers - lol
I still don't have a clue where I will eventually end up working ... am currently still in limbo ... being used as an extra body (doing "alternate duties") at the same place I have been for about 15 years ... it has been decided, by "the powers that be" I should not go back to what I was doing ... so they have to find somewhere else for me ... but things are taking time to happen ... all the red tape, etc ... things like this seem to move at the speed of dark - lol
But ... I have been doing a lot of thinking, and Coming to terms with things ...
Who would have thought that, at my age (54) I would be having to come to terms with the fact that I actually have a disability ... but the good news with this is - it is not something I have just acquired - it is, mostly (aside from the whole stress disorder thing that is multiplying some of the effects of it at the moment), one which I have had for all of my life ...
Am I Crazy? ... no ...
Confused? ... don't know about you, but me - yes ... lol
Just part of the weirdness that Comes from falling apart
and then in with all that mess, discovering that part of the reason my whole world Came Crumbling down was that I had been trying to Cope with it all minus one bit of Crucial information ... that I am actually Autistic!
... that diagnosis did not Come as a Complete surprise - I had my suspicions that I may have Aspergers, but had then dismissed them - as I was too social, too vocal, too normal ... or so I thought ... what was so Confusing was the stereotypes that one tends to hear/read about, and the fact that I did not have a Clue just how much it actually Could affect me ... things I never realised/thought of ... like this stuff: https://musingsofanaspie.com/executive-function-series/
Of Course it also didn't help that a psychologist I saw for Counselling when my ex walked out (in 2013) also told me I was normal - just "a rare personality type" ... when I asked if I might have Aspergers he laughed and said "no, you don't have that - you make good eye Contact and Can Carry on a Conversation with me" ... argh ... and unfortunately an all to Common thing to happen [here is a link to a recent article about why: https://theconversation.com/the-women-who-dont-know-theyre-autistic-80991
Ok ... I typed some of this stuff several days ago, ready to finish typing and post it later ... and I had this bit in there: [copy in some of what I wrote about coming to terms with stuff, here and there in notes]
... I have been typing up these blog post ideas in the notes app on my iPad, and I have also been typing up a kind of "dear diary" type thing every day or 5, with what has been happening, and any thoughts and feelings I can think of/remember ... I have found it quite useful - typing things helps me sort them out better in my thoughts ... a bit like talking about them does ... sometimes I work out what I think/feel about things when I notice myself telling someone! or when it kind of ends up being written here in my notes ... or kind of appearing in the middle of a blog post I am writing - lol
(And some of what ends up in my blog posts starts as things I was writing in my notes :)
Now ... I wonder when I wrote whatever it was I wanted to add in here?
*goes and looks*
I think I was thinking about this:
"It has been an interesting journey/adjustment I have to make ... from always being such a fiercely independent person, to now having to come to terms with just how much help I actually seem to need at the moment ...
... and maybe that is (at least partly) why I have been getting myself into so many [emotional] knots about my work situation/Comcare/etc stuff ...?
Oddly enough - I am now looking forward to possibly seeing an OT, and maybe yet another shrink ... and who knows who else ... and seeing a psychologist again (I already knew I definitely need to do at least that, but now realising I probably do need the all the other stuff as well) ... was always looking fwd to getting some kind of help with skills Assesment/finding out what job I would be best suited to, but now also really interested to find out more about me ... all the things I might have going on/working differently that I have always just thought was normal ... like what problems/differences, if any, do I have with things like proprioception, motor skills, coordination, sensory stuff, etc ... [not to mention all the things that contributed to the problems I was having at work - communication, executive function, social problems, anxiety, who knows what else ... ]
Just ... still feel a bit weird about it all ... probably because I don't actually know how I feel? lol"
"It is an odd place to be in ... Knowing that I am highly intelligent and in so many ways so capable ... but yet I am also ... to be quite honest - mentally disabled ...
[the stress disorder alone would qualify me for that label]
Yet somehow ... as confronting and undesirable that label would have sounded to me in the past ... for some reason, maybe because it now has a logical reason/understanding attached, I now seem to be ok with accepting it?!
The odd situation I have read about on blogs/in books - of being so disabled in some ways, yet in others" [most things :] ... not ...
Not sure if I wrote this anywhere in my notes, but definitely something I have been thinking lately:
I am ... Almost normal ... I could probably use that as a title for my blog, or a book ... almost ... but not quite ... I look normal, and often act normal - I even thought I was normal (just not very good at it) for most of my life, and can mostly BE normal ... except those few times ... where I am not ... lol
Oh ... I just found what I already wrote ... I was the beginning of an idea for a blog post for the letter A ... that I never got Around to doing - lol
I think I said it better the first time:
"Almost normal ...
One of the problems with being an Aspie, or having any variety of high functioning Autism, or ADHD/ADD, etc. and probably with a lot of other hidden disabilities too ... is that most of the time one can Appear, Act, and to all intents and purposes - BE, quite normal ... except for those times when one isn't! - when things don't work/one encounters a problem ... and then it comes as a surprise to people, and/or one is expected not to have a problem because "you usually don't have problems" or "everyone else can do that" or "but you are not disabled?" ... when in reality ... I am ...
Some of the time it is quite obvious, but other times not even noticeable - in fact I didn't even know myself, until I was 54!"
Although maybe I should not use "almost"? ... it may imply that I am something less ... when in some ways I am MORE than normal ... as someone else (I think it was Temple Grandin) says: "different, not less" ...
So - maybe I should describe myself as "Delightfully Different"? lol
Or ... I Could just Continue to Call myself "Crazy" ? :)
(Or does that one also have the wrong Connotations? ... when people Call me Crazy I have always Considered it a Compliment - lol
I think this is where I Could also include a quote from the lyrics of a Leonard Cohen song ... Currently my favourite song - (Anthem)
"There is a Crack, a Crack in everything - it's how the light gets in"
I have a "Crack" ... and I want to light up the world!
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