A few days ago, I discovered Blogtober, a month-long event aimed at bloggers writing a post everyday during the month. There are prompts for each day of the month. They’re based on song titles, but you can do whatever you want. You don’t even have to follow the prompts! The first prompt is “This Is Me”.
So, who am I? When introducing myself, I tend to focus heavily on my labels. I tend to say that I’m blind and autistic and that I have mild cerebral palsy. I tend to say that I live in a care facility. I tend to say that I don’t work, but do day activities at my facility. Then again, are these the things that define me?
I could also be focusing on my passions. I am a blogger. I love to read memoirs and young adult fiction. I love to make soap and other bath and body care products. I am interested in aromatherapy. I am passionate about mental health and disability rights.
These are more “me” than my disabilities, but they’re still labels. Who I am at the core is not a blind or autistic person, or a blogger even.
Still, it is hard to define myself beyond the labels. Here are, however, a few things I think make me me.
- I am open to new experiences. For example, I love to discover new hobbies. I am also open-minded to differences in people’s identity.
- I am passionate. When I have an idea in mind, I can truly focus on it for a while. This means I can really be enthusiastic, but it also means I tend to perseverate.
- I am sensitive, both to emotions and to physical stimuli. This may or may not be a positive characteristic, depending on how much I can handle on a given day.
- I am intelligent. This is often the first positive quality people mention about me and I tend to hate that. After all, my IQ was often used to show that I should be able to solve my problems in other areas. Now that I am in an environment that doesn’t judge people by their IQ – I live with people with severe to profound intellectual disability -, I tend to appreciate my intelligence somewhat more.
- I am a go-getter. Some people would disagree, because I have very poor distress tolerance and because I haven’t achieved their goals for me. They see the fact that I’m in a care facility and not working as a sign that I’ve given up. I haven’t. I have just focused on my own true needs and desires.
What are some things that make you uniquely you?