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Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Playing the Fool

The Fool Card

At #0 (or, in some decks, #22, the last card as much as the first of the Majors) the Fool is the card of infinite possibilities. The bag on the staff indicates that he has all he needs to do or be anything he wants, he has only to stop and unpack. He is on his way to a brand new beginning.

But the card carries a little bark of warning as well. While it's wonderful to be enthralled with all around you, excited by all life has to offer, you still need to watch your step, lest you fall and end up looking the fool.


The day after Autistic Speaking Day has left me with a sense of apathy lately. While I have been rather jaded and burnt out with the past events of doing disability activism for ASAN. I personally stopped caring about what lives I will changed or have changed or have left in doubt. You might gasp at this and find it tragic but trust me. This is me drawing the Fool Card.

I use do Tarot readings for shits and giggles. Later I got more interested in Rune casting and I actually excelled in Runes than Tarot. Still, the point of the metaphor is not about how I like to do divination for fun, but why I didn't look before I leap.

I was over doing it. I was throwing myself into my work and thus expended my emotional resources which left me a bitter, jaded and hateful person. I don't like the saccharine kids that want to be Aut-activists, my patients for parents is gone and any superheroish feelings of wanting to save the world, have all been ashed by the harsh reality that the thankless job of being an advocate doesn't bring recognition or the feeling of accomplishment that I desired. I was unhappy with myself, with what I was doing and yet I was still meeting with young women who wants answers. Writing letters to parents, going to talk to other DD self-advocates and even speaking to Melanie's class. Even today at work, I was explaining the wrongs of Aut$pks to a naive volunteer. I keep throwing my ass on the fire for some reason. Highly aware that I am being burnt.

Ladies and Gents, I like you to meet the Fool Card of the Autistic Major Arcana.

I still keep hoping that something will change. That Autistics Speaking day will actually improve relations with parents and teachers instead of becoming somesort of glorified meme. That Aut$pks will change hands with someone else that has been touched by neurodiversity and thus, will have better PR. I hope that one day ASAN will become a leading disability organization, that I will be staff one day with a paycheck. That parents will be reconmended to seek out ASAN chapters to involve their teenangers with.

It's a pipedream I am sure. I am so cynical and dry that I know I am fighting a loosing battle. Yet despite being so fucking jaded I manage to saunter merrily down the path and into a gaping chasm. Maybe the caveat isn't really the cliff in front of me, but the fact I was so blind to it and I keep climbing up and falling back into it.

Let me make this clear.
Don't self-advocate thinking that you will change the world. Self-advocate because you rather fall into the schism yourself than having someone chuck you into it.