Acceptance

Welcome new Ollibean writer, Amy Sequenzia! We know you’re going to love her blog and her poems……..
“Accepting myself is an on going process. A few days ago I wrote a poem about acceptance. It is easier for me, sometimes, to write about my life in verses. But after I write about what bothers me in verses and stanzas, I can talk about it in any format. I freed myself when I wrote the poem. In a way, I accepted myself a little more.”

It is very hard to have confidence in my abilities when all my life, when people meet me, the first reaction is a mix of pity, disinterest, ableism, even disgust. If the person knows my work, they might react with disbelief: “how can she be the one who wrote those words?”

I am who I am, I look the way I look. If today I have friends who support me, help me, listen and talk to me, and teach me through shared experiences; if I have these friends by my side, then I am not the problem; and the solution is acceptance.

Here is the poem:

 

 

Acceptance

This is how you will see me

As I approach you for the first time

I will look distracted, uninterested

Maybe I will be in a wheel chair

I will seem aloof to you.

 

But know this:

Despite my slow motion body

Despite my wandering eyes

I will be taking things in

Absorbing my surroundings

Getting used to the environment.

 

If a mild melt down

Or overburden anxiety

Does not occur then,

I will be curious about you

Inside my brain I will be very alert.

 

The next moment

As I get close to you

I might look a little “silly”.

My tongue might be out of my mouth

I could bite my fingers

I will probably drool a little.

 

Know this:

My emotions control my actions 

 – Sometimes.

If I am too anxious

If I am too happy

I do things that may seem

Strange

Weird

Funny

Silly

(the drooling is a side effect of anti-seizure medication).

 

Then we will be very close

And that’s when we’ll meet

My eyes might not look directly at you

(I sometimes use peripheral vision)

That’s because I am shy

Or anxious

Or overwhelmed

Maybe I had a seizure

 

I want you to know

It is not disinterest

I will do my best to show you that

There is more of me 

Than it might be visible to you 

 

If we start to talk

Be assured that I’ll be listening

I’ll need some time to think

A pause to calm the emotions

Before I type some words

My thoughts and impressions

 

Meeting you will be exciting

An extraordinary event

But despite my great desire

To be the best I can

To show you all I am

To be heard and to listen to you

We might need more than one meeting

 

We might need to meet again

To become true friends

To move from first impressions

To lasting understanding – and mutual acceptance 

 

Copyright 2012 by Amy Sequenzia

About the Author:

Amy Sequenzia is a non-speaking Autistic, multiply disabled activist and writer. Amy writes about disability rights, civil rights and human rights. She also writes poetry.
Amy has presented in several conferences in the US and abroad, and her work is featured in books about being Autistic and Disabled. Amy is deeply involved with the Neurodiversity Movement and has been outspoken about the rights and worthy of disabled people.
Amy serves on the Board of Directors of the Autistic Self Advocacy Network (ASAN), and the Florida Alliance for Assistive Services and Technology (FAAST). http://nonspeakingautisticspeaking.blogspot.com and Autism Women’s Network. You can also follow Amy on Twitter at @AmySequenzia.

One Comment

  1. Lily Frost April 15, 2012 at 9:50 am - Reply

    We should all be accepted!

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