Francesca Baird: Autism and relationship’s part two

The following is a short extract from my book.

Label Me: My Journey Towards an Autism Diagnosis)

A Fantasy World

Label Me: Chapter 5: A Fantasy World. (2)

For almost six months, I failed to acknowledge Steve (the unsuitable object of my affections) overtly. I had of course spotted him from afar – using my in-built Steve detection system – allowing me to spot him wherever he was in the shopping centre. This included the use of mirror reflections and his bright orange shirt (security uniform) to assist with the identification process. A typical Steve experience, involved walking past each other, heading in opposite directions and often metres apart. I would keep my eyes focused firmly in front to avoid any kind of eye contact, but I could sense him looking at me which was enough to keep me satisfied until the next time. It was even better if I had a friend who I could be seen talking to or laughing with as he passed, introducing a slightly different dynamic to the scene. As school was only fifteen minutes from the centre, I would use my free periods to go into town for a thrilling walk by Steve experience. My friends were more than happy to spend their free time shopping, so it was a win-win situation all round.

After each social encounter, I would analyse every little detail – did he see me? From what angle did he see me? Was I laughing or engaged in conversation? Did he like my new belt.  Did he even spot it? It was no coincidence that he was standing in the exact spot overlooking the ground floor since this is where he would have the best view of me walking past. Later that day, at home, I played Michelle Branch on repeat while looking at myself in the mirror (for up to a couple of hours at a time), trying to take on his perspective and in doing so, purposefully trying to view myself through his eyes in order to generate excitement and fuel my fantasy. Suddenly, I was no longer thinking about illness and death; I had found a new interest to consume my thoughts. It seemed a ‘healthier’ obsession which was more aligned with my friends’ love interests. It could only be a good thing, right?

Support Francesca by contributing to Kickstarter Fundraiser so that Label Me: My Journey Towards an Autism Diagnosis can be published

Francesca Baird: Blogging about Autism: Work and My Fantasy World
Francesca Baird: Autism and relationships. Chapter 5: A Fantasy World

This section: Label Me: Francesca Baird blogging about autism

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Avatar of PatByrne Publisher of Pat's Guide to Glasgow West End; the community guide to the West End of Glasgow. Fiction and non-fiction writer.

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