Today I worked late. In the morning I joined a room about English conversation. I told the audience about myself. I have autism so I need time to respond to/answer your comments... like that in English. Then the host said, "You can't be looked at as autistic!". I thought about this comment. Of course, it can't be an ironic or harmful comment. My response/answering was so smooth that the host wanted to say I am fluent as a neurotypical person. But I had a complicated thought. Then what should be the 'vivid' autism image? Can we imagine such an image?
I talked about this in another group/communiity. Then a member said that "That's because you can't be put into any stereotypical image of autism". "You are very intelligent, charismatic, and well-spoken". Charismatic!? I got surprised at this comment (If I told this to my co-workers, they would say that 'what a bullshit!'). But I can imagine there must be some stereotypical images. Speaking awkwardly and not smoothly, or slowly. That must be the image.
I guess that this kind of 'not stereotypical' autism is the reason we can't understand what can be autism well. Autism is a very difficult handicap because some people say that 'if there were 100 types of people, then autism also should be 100 types'. So I am sometimes said that "You must not be autistic because you are so active that you join many clubs and act so energetic". But I won't blame that person. She gave me a good chance to think about this thing. It lets me insight and reflects. That's nice.
I started reading Yoko Tawada's "Exophony". My mother tongue is Japanese. Then thinking in English means going out of the Japanese zone? Going out of the Japanese warm and comfortable circle and thinking in the global area. Indeed, if I start thinking in English, I can feel that my thought gets clearer. But I won't say that thinking in Japanese can also be logical. We can do logical thinking in Japanese. But, maybe because my base of thinking has consisted of English, I can be looked at as 'charismatic' if I use English. That's profound.