Writing has always been my 'sanctuary'. I've written fiction and poetry since I was ten. At that age, I wasn't interested in playing with the other kids. I was always alone in my room, scribbling away.
So, I suppose you could say that it's my escape. The thing is, though, it's double-edged. I find it hard to do for sustained periods (I have a short attention span) - and when it isn't 'working' properly, it leads me to anxiety and disillusionment. It's like, I can't do the only thing I feel that I want to do.
I used to take anti-depressants, but I stopped once I got the diagnosis. I've always enjoyed running, so exercise helps - getting those endorphins going! I like walking, too. And I do meditation, off and on. In recent years, I've been drinking too much. I've tried stopping, but life almost becomes unbearable. I don't think of myself as an alcoholic, because I can go for long periods without it. I try to keep tabs on it, too. Ideally, I'd like to stop. But it's like Bukowski said: 'When you drink, the world's still out there. It just doesn't have you by the throat for a while.' (I'm sure he was an undiagnosed Aspie). I know the score with booze. I know it's a depressant. I know that I drink for the wrong reasons. But it does help me through some really bad times.
Now my life makes a bit more sense to me, I tend to feel more positive. But, like all of us, I can swing from enjoying the good things to dwelling on the bad - and before I know it, I'm spiraling again. I work with special needs people at a day centre, and that's very fulfilling for me. I have a lot in common with some of them. But when I get home, I like to shut my door and be alone - just me and the cat, and some films to watch. When I'm out and with people, anxiety is always there - in greater or lesser degree. Films have taken the place of books for me in recent years. I used to love reading, but now find it very difficult to concentrate for a sustained period of time. A film, though, is a complete story in an average of a couple of hours - and once I'm absorbed in a film, I feel as good as I can feel (apart from when I'm asleep). It's escapism, intellectual engagement, catharsis... the whole thing. I probably watch upwards of 300 films a year.
Edited by MartianTom, 09 June 2016 - 05:45 PM.