MY TRIP FROM BAGHDAD TO TWITTER & ASPERGER

Today I realized there is a whole history to be documented my life my family with asperger  .

The whole incident began when a friend suggested that we share our families history .my father whom I strongly  suspect is an aspie & I think he did also known that this disorder was in fact inherited in our family for generations. my father was an Iraqi professor he took his M.S. degree in Biology from the University  Of Science IN  Arizona at the year 1959.his major was genetics & tissue culture of plants .He was hyper focused and could talk for hours endlessly in his special interest date palms . This is the plant that was widely spread in Iraq & memorized about 650species of this plant that grows in Iraq. He would travel a long way far to the borders of Iraq if he had heard that there is an undiscovered species of this plant to document the case .He finished his long life research with documenting the dictionary of Date palms in Iraq. The way that my father was or his behavior was engraved in my memory for a long time he was sweet natured methodological honest calm person whom his personality would change totally when he talks about his interest his plants, gardening and off course date palms.

In 1961 my dad married my mom, yet another aspie story to be told ,my dad kept proposing to my mom 4 ten yrs & she refused until finally she agreed after his return from America in 1959.My a colleague graduate her major was Arabic language .she was a headmistress for a long time . They were happily married because my mom strong personality led the way in the family giving my dad space & affection to be what he is. He would just spend hours in the garden watering his plants at early morning hours  watching its growth while my mom was attending her daily responsibilities which was house holding ,marketing groceries & cooking ,raising 5-children wasn`t that easy so she hired a maid to help her .

These are the dailies of eastern family were men are privileged & women do all the work .we move by the concept of groups (family) so no one even suspected something was wrong a highly  educated man with a good position & welfare just no one would ask about his awkwardness or weirdness because its was thought to be genius.

My dad would work for hours with papers & books all around his scattered untidy everywhere but to his photographic memory every detail & every piece of paper where in its place & I inherited this from him.

He named me Dahlia according to a flower discovered by a Mexican guy called Dahlia another proof of his aspieness .

As my dad talked to us he would talk for hours about his favorite topics plants, date palms, Middle experiments & genetics.

We were well informed by the scientific names of the plants, types & diseases also he made us learn about maps & memorized every country`s capital. We had Lego’s, animal pets from ducks & cats to sheep’s & dogs.

My family had a tragic incident in 1968, I had a sister before me who died after a sudden disease .my parents where very affected by this & kept internalizing pain within.

As I was born after my sister death a year later 1969, their were health problems to be dealt with, sensory issues it was like I was allergic to everything to sounds , I panic quickly & have meltdowns.

I remember crying so loud with both my hands covering my ears saying that my ears hurts me when the fact is I was afraid of crowds & unusual environment,

Having two younger brothers made my mom busier but dad gave us a lot of attention he would read to us before sleep the fairy tales in which I was so fascinated by, my imagination worked intensly  that the stories became so vivid.

Dad also made a habit of picking fresh fruits from the garden early in the morning to make fresh juice for me to drink in my milk-bottle.

He even took us with him to his lab in the college of science & showed us proudly the green house where he kept his experimental plants .we roamed in the lab showed us his microscope & the incubator .we made a lot of discoveries in that lab.

At  the age of four I was able to write my name ,spent a lot of time with my younger brothers  playing & making discoveries but something was foggy in my thinking I was socially different

My dad planted 23 types of date palms in our big garden & gladly offered to plant date palms to the entire neighborhood & he did which made him very popular & loved his hobby helped him  through the social maze. As I recall my dad it is like opening an old book that kept away turned down .thinking now about what we shared

1-higher senses & high level of anxiety, anything can shut us down noises, smells etc…

2-sleepless nights or little time needed for sleep, which is like timing sleep hours & waking in the same time every day, we were like bats wide awake at night united with the solitude of night & dark peacefulness quiet.

3-aloneness no matter how crowded a room was u was a unity, observing, analyzing, calculating & measuring wide attentive to specific details & patterns.

4-deep passion or interest to certain things, our children, our jobs

Hobbies pets.

5-straight forwardness, literal thinking , unable to comprehend physical ,facial expressions ,thinking that all people has abilities matches our own don’t understand why can’t everyone be like us ,we deeply think that our own is the simplest &  more efficient thinking ways.

6-routines, something can never change easily behavior patterns that in the same order make sense only to us.

7-caring too much but appearing that not interested or not paying attention.

8-sometimes we seem immune to pain just can’t feel like if someone died the problem is that he seized to exist anymore we move on.

Somethings just taste or smell different than  a normal person can  describe like bitter to salty

I want  to talk about the weirdest things I have felt when I was pregnant or what it was like with birth pains or breast  feeding the need to  hold a child or kiss him it was the  hardest mental struggle .

In my family being differently weird was allowed  ,my dad a great scientist as he was couldn’t  change a flat tire or mentain a car or even wash it by himself .my mom had a deep understanding we had the freedom to play & scatter our play items everywhere ,we would put lego s every where & leave them just there you know it just that the first thing that we do when we open our eyes in the morning is to check  our play items just where we left them or we melt down & our  parent understood this need & let it there.

When I remember my father it is like opening old book that I had kept turned down for along period of time ,everything we share came back in detail so powerful & vivid .

Let me bring examples of our dailies:

One day my dad reserved tickets for a family trip to mousel in northern Iraq , we waited in the train station for hours just to discover later that the tickets he bought  was for basrah in southern Iraq he mistook the tickets window & didn’t even check them up & we returned home that night so late very tired from waiting..

My dad  had unplanned behavior punctuality never meant anything to him he would arrive late at any appointment it was like a pattern he follows .

His living values & his compassion made him the best dad ,he would make everything so easy by his straight forward behavior & bravery ,he was so convincing & living made so easy to us.

Living by the paying forward concept (helping other ppl)&  he totally  believe that doing good eventually will return to you & to your family endless benefits & goods.

His political beliefs that politics is evil ambition , politicians use religion to mask their real intention & lust for power.,& this is how he explained the history of islam & the sunni & sheaa conflict.

One at my 5-yrs old birthday ,mom made me nice cake & I insisted that I must carry it to the garden our favorite family place ,dad told them let her ,the cake just fall on the green grass ,no one blamed me & we continued my birthday ,he had a way of understanding our weirdness & how much emotionally sensitive we were he would let  us be happy rather then break  us.

I had the freedom to lock myself in my room for two days just to finish a book I was reading like pride & prejudice by jean austin  my favorate

My younger brother also showed autistic traits   ,like eating the same type of food 3-meals everyday for months ,he was rigid thinker ,silent , internalized feelings,& sometimes violent behavior ,that’s right we can show aggression & violence cause we cant talk conflicts out. But that wasn’t a pattern , my dad made a family intervention to control this kind of behavior, we would gather & talk , analyze & teach him how to react make a show to let him learn to control his behavior & how to react . this procedure were developed in our home to deal with social interaction & pressure .we all would do our roles & it was a big success .

Being a big family with many cousins , aunts & nephews everybody did his share in helping & would gather in our house  to discuss & teach us the ways of people & the social  cues . we were sufficiently independent .

I think our family is a success   my sister an MD.PHD. In hematology .three civil engineers & one computer analyst

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