At first, my apologies for being late with a new blogpost again. It’s very hard to me to think of things from my daily life to talk about. There’s plenty to talk about, but with some things I just don’t know how to make a proper blogpost about it and with other things it’s about conflicts I have with people I know. I don’t like to blog about that, as it can hurt people’s feelings. That’s not what my blog is for. But I got a new topic to talk about!
If you ever visit me at my house, there’s one thing I’ll always tell you right away. I’ll first offer you something to drink and then tell you that if you ever need another drink, just tell me. You’re also allowed to get something to drink yourself.
There’s a good reason I say this. Is it because I’m actually that rude that I can’t even take a few minutes out to get you something to drink? Or that I’m that rude that I don’t want to bother to offer something to drink myself?
No, that’s not it. I’m actually trying to be a nice host here. I have a lot of trouble thinking about little needs from other people. Like thirst, for example. It’s not that I don’t care. When I see that someone has some sort of negative emotion, be it sad or angry or lonely or whatever, I’ll ask what it wrong and try to help. It’s simply that subtle emotions are lost on me, I don’t see them. I can’t see when you’re thirsty and subtle hints hardly ever work on me. Also, when I get lost in all the fun we’re having, thinking about something small, like thirst, just doesn’t happen. Again, it’s not that I don’t care. I simply have a hard time thinking about small needs, until the topic comes up.
For example, you’ll find that when I get thirsty myself, I’ll usually offer my guest something to drink too. This is because I’m suddenly reminded of the need of something to drink and will remember that I haven’t offered something in a long while.
So I don’t make you ask for, or get a drink yourself because I don’t care, but because I know I easily forget about such a thing and I don’t want you to get thirsty just because it’s considered polite to wait until a drink is being offered. I’d feel very bad about that.
I have trouble with forgetting about small needs of others like that all the time. The same goes for plants. When I was young my parents got me a small cactus to take care of. They figured ‘surely she won’t let a cactus die’. Erm… Yes I did. I took great care of it at first, but after a while I forgot about the cactus, because I got distracted by other things in life. The cactus was slightly out of sight, so I was never reminded by it either. Three years later I suddenly saw my cactus standing there. Or rather, I saw it slightly bended over and turning grey… It was dying. I actually let a cactus die, simply because I wasn’t reminded of it.
A lot of people who hear this story, usually immediately wonder what I’d do with a pet. Well I can tell you that I’m scared of most animals and don’t ever want a pet, so that’s easily solved. We did have dwarf hamsters when I was little, but they were in a cage and they weren’t mine. My brother and sister owned them, so it was their job to take care of them.
I was never really bothered by all this, as I never had animals or plants to take care of after the cactus. I do feel sad that I sometimes forget about the small needs of others too. I’m sorry about this.
But about a year ago I suddenly realised that I’m growing up and will eventually be living on my own. When I live on my own, I will probably want some plants around as they’re good for my health and they’re fun to have around. But what good is a plant, if I can’t take care of them? I also saw that I sometimes hurt the feelings of my (by now: ex-)boyfriend by forgetting about his small needs. This hurt me deeply. He understood that I was seriously trying, but still… I want to be there for my boyfriend, not just for big issues, but always. I’m single now, but I’m sure I’ll find a boyfriend again and then I want to be there for him. So, time to work on this.
I wanted to teach myself this by getting a plant, because if I screw up with a plant, it isn’t that big an issue. But I wanted a herb, so that I’d be rewarded with a nice meal immediately if I take proper care of the plant. With the opening of the Weekly Autism Meeting one of the volunteers came up with an activity where you could grow garden cress (Dutch: tuinkers) in a very creative way. This was perfect timing!
It was hard, as I had to figure out how to take care of garden cress (how much water do I give, what temperature does it need, how frequently do I water it, etc), but I eventually managed to grow some! I rewarded myself with a nice sandwich with cheese and garden cress. Loved it!
After that I tried to grow some more herbs. I failed miserably. Luckily a friend of a regular visitor of the Weekly Autism Meeting was an expert at plants and he told me that the seller of the herbs simply had me put the wrong type of herbs next to each other and that it was doomed to fail. So it wasn’t my fault after all! I got excited again and wanted to try again. To keep my motivation I would play it safe and use garden cress one more time.
But then my life got a little harder, as I started working somewhere which cost me a lot of my health and got fired again because I was ill too much. (If you want to know more about me getting fired, check out this blogpost: Fired )
This took so much out of me, that I laid the idea of growing some more herbs aside. After a while I forgot where I had put the seeds, so I had to go and buy some new ones. I found my old ones again and now I have a whole bunch. Then I kept forgetting about it… See? Forgetting about little things again. Recently I started thinking about it again, but other things demanded my attention.
Now I got sick of myself and told myself to get to it. Today I have a day where nothing is planned, so I emptied out my old plant pots, got in new Earth soil, put in the seeds and put water on it. Now I simply need to remember to water it each week… Fingers crossed!