Work today wasn’t very good. I think I slept badly again because of the heat and yawned away like crazy on the Tube and struggled to stay awake. There was a fair amount of work to do in the morning, but in the afternoon I was sorting old papers again, mostly minutes of meetings from circa 2002-2006. There were minutes from a number of similarly-named committees mixed up together, which was confusing. I spent a lot of time feeling anxious about E and my wedding ceremony and got into a bad state. E and I were texting about it too, and that probably made things worse, as we both got into a negative mindset where each thought that the other deserved a better partner than we could be. I probably texted too much for a work day, but there wasn’t really much work to do.

I got quite down and self-critical, so E and I had a long conversation this evening when we looked at wedding plans systematically and said how we envisioned our wedding, as well as listing our top three wedding priorities. E let me count “religious stuff” as one thing, which was generous of her (I’ve already told her that having Minchah and Ma’ariv (Afternoon and Evening Prayers) is lower down my list and might get cut). I think we both felt better after that as we have a clearer idea of what we want, and I have a clearer idea of why she wants to keep the costs down.

It’s scary that tiredness + boredom and maybe + heat can quickly = extreme self-criticism and pessimism about the future, as well as cynicism about my ability to make good life choices. I should remember that I can get quite down at work, particularly when there isn’t much to do or I’ve made mistakes (both of which happened today). It is good that E and I have talked this through now.

Unfortunately, I am no closer to determining how many people I would feel comfortable with at the wedding, or how to narrow down my list if I decide thirty people (plus E’s guests) would be too many.

***

When I was self-critical and beating myself up about life decisions that weren’t entirely within my control, I had a thought about autism spectrum disorder, namely that it seems to be entirely random whether you get a version that turns you into someone severely disabled, a version that turns you into a super-successful Elon Musk-type visionary, or something in between. I’m not sure of any other condition that can be either disabling or enabling except perhaps ADHD (which has some links to autism). There isn’t really a clear way of causing one or the other outcome (that we know of currently).

Unfortunately, these days I feel that I’m moderately disabled. I have a reasonable degree of functionality compared with someone who is non-verbal or even compared with someone who essentially lives at home and does no paid work and has no friends (which is somewhere I’ve been in the past, or close to), but I’m clearly not functional enough to fully support myself financially at present or to have the kind of lifestyle many of my neurotypical peers have attained, and I don’t know how I go about changing that. My book learning has not really helped me in a work environment that values “soft skills” and networking ability so much more than academic skills, and my inability to function in noisy environments or under pressure do not make things easier for me.

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12 thoughts on “Wedding Plans

  1. I’m so glad that you’ve discussed top priorities and come to some agreements and compromises. Wedding planning, even not during a pandemic and from different countries, is terribly stressful. (it was for me anyway)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I don’t think that the challenges of going from academia/book-smarts to the job world is unique to persons with autism; I know tons of neurotypical people who struggled with this. And if you mean success in a writing career specifically, writing is a notoriously difficult career path. I’m not encouraging comparison to others (although yes, I am very guilty of doing this myself) but even so, I think your basis for comparison is flawed.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. That’s true about other people struggling too.

      I would really want to be successful in any career, although writing seems the most likely option. You’re right that it’s a very difficult career path.

      Liked by 1 person

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