I think it is kinda cliché for someone who actually wants to be famous. Some people work their asses off and do whatever they can to get famous. Me, on the other hand? Fame kinda found me by accident. I am outspoken about my Autism diagnosis and it just sorta…happened. Word got out that I am talking about Autism and the next thing I know, I am a mini celebrity in the Autism community in the Baltimore area. I do not know how full-blown celebrities, like people who are actually famous (take famous musicians for example) put up with it! When you are famous–like, really famous–you can’t even take a piss without the paparazzi wanting a picture or fans wanting an autograph. Celebrities are people, like me and you and the other commoners. Don’t get me wrong, I would ask them, too. But they are people and that’s all.
The same goes for me. I was kind of thrown into the Autism spotlight and sorta became the “poster child” for Autism in Baltimore…and I am not being self-centered. Every Autism event in Baltimore that comes up, people want me to be part of or involved in. I know it sounds like I am an unwilling participant, but I’m not. I love the publicity. I love the attention. I love talking to people about my diagnosis. I like the idea of being that approachable. BUT…I, like other “normal” people, want some privacy. I am usually not standoffish but if I wanna be left alone, then yeah I might have kind of a short fuse.
I can be kind of short with people if I want my space. Now will I tell you to fuck off right to your face? Um…probably not. And it is because I have some decency and common courtesy. Having said all that, I do want recognition. Who doesn’t want to be recognized for their hard work? Yes, I work my ass off but that is because I take pride in what I do. I LOVE IT!
Self-advocacy is extremely important to me. It is my work; my play; my passion…my life. If people latch onto me, it’s fine by me. But just give me some space. I need some downtime. I need time to myself. I have charisma but I try not to flaunt it. I try to live day-by-day. Some people recognize my ability to connect to people more than others. And that is ok. Everyone can think what they wanna think.
In closing, we all have a talent. Mine is talking about my Autism diagnosis. Whether you want fame and recognition is entirely up to you. Some of you might want a more quiet, hush-hush life, only occasionally doing something notable. And that is perfectly fine. Some of you might want have that “in your face” approach. That is ok too. But do not try too much to impact anyone else’s way of thinking or their lives. Me? I see both sides here. Yes, I want recognition but I also want to be able to have a life outside my “fame.” I would love to hear your thoughts on this. Feel free to weigh in. Thanks and good night!