Sometimes, I sit by the computer on my designated ‘today I shall post a blog!’ days, and I can’t pull one thing out my rabbit-heart-speed brain that I want to talk about. Not because there isn’t anything that I want to talk about, but because there is so damned much I want to talk about. I can’t tease it apart in my head to make something coherent to set down on paper.
I want to talk about the continuing mess that is the UK government and its heinous mistreatment of disabled people.
I want to talk about the injustice I see all around me, to scream, and rail, and use what little platform I have to wave the banner I struggle to go out and wave in the streets.
I want to talk about pain and anger that I feel when neurotypical people at me, trying nt-splain autism and tell me that I don’t have a right to speak.
I want to talk about social media recommending various ABA and other ‘make your child more normal!’ therapies to me because I use the word ‘autism’ in my writing.
I want to talk about queerness, and where I fit in that community, and the stabbing feeling when someone overlooks my identity from within the very community that is supposed to look after me.
I want to talk about relationships, how I’ve never had one, and how for a long time this made me feel wrong, and unlovable, and like I didn’t have right to call myself bisexual.
I want to talk about my dogs, and the joy they bring me, and the fear I feel every time I take them outside that someone will cry ‘pitbull’ and they’ll be taken away for an ‘examination’ that they may not come back from.
I want to talk about what is happening in America, my fear of the creeping spread to this country, my terror at the rise of the far-right all around, and the anxiety over what this means for my queer disabled self.
I want to talk about my little quirks, my soft toys, my fandoms, my stims, my joys, my loves, my amazing marvelous brain and the weird things it does.
I want to write a review of this book, or that app, and then, just as I sit down to do it, PETA releases some more ableist bullshit and I have suck the venom out of my blood via the keyboard.
There’s too much to write about, and there’s too much to think about, and there’s too much to be worried about. And it can become so overwhelming that you end up unable to do anything.
So I have to teach myself, over and over again, to sit back and use whatever techniques I have to cushion the voices in my head. To step away, and take a breath, and let it all wash over me rather than scrabbling to catch something in the cascade.
I need to let myself hold a soft toy to my chest, let the softness and the smell hug my tightly, and use it as an anchor against the building anxiety.
I need to breathe in for four seconds, hold it for seven seconds, and then breathe out for eight seconds.
And I need to tell myself that it’s okay to be too overwhelmed to focus on one thing. It’s okay to not be able to narrow my attention to something so small when my brain is showing me a thousand frames per second. It’s okay to go away, lie down, listen to some calming music, read a book, play with my dogs, sing an amazing song badly and write a blog about there being too much to blog about, and then come back to it properly tomorrow. Or the day after. Or the day after that.
The world will keep spinning. The issues will still be there. The fights will still be needing fought.
But, for today, rather than trying to wrestle it into some kind of forced coherency, I instead have to accept my noisy head – hold its hand, tuck it into bed and let it do its thing.