4/04/2010

Diversity


Trees in bloom fascinate me. Getting up-close photos of the blooms, seeing what the camera lens focuses on and what it blurs, is endlessly interesting. If I could hug the blooms, I would, if that makes sense. They evoke such emotion. I like to compare the blooms, the buds just starting all the way through to the spent blossoms; there's this huge array on the tree all at the same time.

There's an infinite diversity of people out there, all tantalizingly similar, and yet different, unique, and in varying stages of development, all at the same time. Endlessly fascinating. Our differences separate us, certainly, but I think, often it is our similarities that get even more in the way.

You'd think a simple thing like saying all people deserve respect and acceptance wouldn't serve as a wedge between people, but it does, and I don't think it's our differences that do that. Take for example the parents who are divided; we're all sharing similar experiences, and it is those similarities that end up dividing us: we face these similar life experiences in different ways, and one of the questions I entertain is how these shared experiences shape us. Why do some parents turn in one direction and other parents turn in another?

Another thing that gets me is that I really can't help but think that parents of kids on the spectrum ought to look at those adults on the spectrum who have overcome such hurdles and made such progress and connect with them, respect those accomplishments, and find such hope for their own children, but there are parents out there who see young adults like Ari who have done just that and they reject him and scorn him simply because he has overcome the challenges.

I don't think that diversity has to mean divisiveness. I hope that it doesn't. I hope that people can learn to push back against things other than each other. I hope that they can learn to look at the wonderful variety of humanity, in all its stages and find the good, find the beauty.

1 comment:

Roger Kulp said...

Why do some parents turn in one direction and other parents turn in another?

Probably because they have been filled with reactionary, conspiritorial and antiprorgres swill from the likes of AoA,and they are driven there by their ignorant uncaring doctors.If Ari Ne'eman,and the rest of neurodiversity,took my advice about reaching out to parents of sick "autistic" children,there might be a lot more unity in the first place.


Flowering trees and all that are a perfect analogy for where I am, figuratively and literally.

We have a lot more in common than you might think.I have been doing bonsai for 11 years now.It has been a big factor in helping me get where I am.

Like most of the Nortern Hemisphere,we had an unusually cold winter. It killed a few of my best trees,including a plum I have had for eleven years.Yet,the remaining bonsai (Ridiculosly diverse,I bet I have the only yucca,and deadly nightshade bonsai on the planet.)
continue to inspire me with their renewal.An old juniper I rescued from a trash pile may have had all of its branches die,but it continues to put out new ones from its old trunk.My pear is done blooming the lilac is about to open,and the forthysia have been going strong for weeks.

Death and resurrection is a perfect theme for where I am.I have just about recovered from my "autism",and I am now well on the way to discovering just what it is I have had all of my life. Everybody on the spectrum needs to have this option,especially if they have a lot more going on than simple Asperger's.

I hope neurodiversity will one day respect that recovery is a path that some of us choose to take,that "autism" is not hard wired into everybody's brain who has it.Some people maybe,but not everybody.That there are real medical conditions that can cause it,mimic it,or cause similar conditions.That everybody who has "autism" as a diagnosis deserves to have the freedom to learn if this is what they really have,be they five years old or fifty-five years old.That recovery from "autism",can be one of the greatest "overcoming of the challenges" of them all.

Even though I don't agree with it, I can respect where neurodiversity is coming from,but are there those in in neurodiversity who can say the same about what I am saying here?

Looking people in the eye, initiating a conversation,and being able to hug a stranger is a beautiful thing.Things I could never do before I was recovered from my "autism".