Dearests,

It’s a momentous day for me.

A couple of hours ago, I heard the words I’ve been waiting for all my life.

“Congratulations, you have ASD.”

I’ve known intuitively for six years now that Asperger’s is who I am, a part of my makeup, the constellation of my stars. And after giving myself the gift of a formal diagnostic process this year, I know it firmly and officially now too.

ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) has given me deep and wide blessings in my life:
+ my sensitivity to seeing life in full colour
+ my ability to hyperfocus like a motherfucker
+ my obsession with learning
+ my quirkiness & my bluntness
+ my way of seeing things.

It’s also brought with it challenges too:
+ how much I am emotionally & physically exhausted by life & social situations
+ how hard I struggled socially as a kid, feeling like I’d missed out on an important chip in the operating system
+ how hard it is to understand other people sometimes.

One big thing I want to share is this: girls & women usually are not diagnosed with ASD because most psychologists & society at large is only aware of the ASD traits in boys & men. Girls & women have a completely different checklist. We aren’t the typical “Sheldons” – we are much better at learning how to mask socially, but it comes at a cost.

If you asked me if I would wish it away, I would never. ASD is part of what makes my life richer, deeper & more divine. ASD is one of my superpowers.

I’m so fucking PROUD to be neurodiverse. This world needs ALL OF US, with our rainbow of brains, abilities, genders & sexualities to be whole & magnificent.

I love you,
Leonie
Also: ASD AF

P.S. If you want to learn more, you can listen to my latest “ASD AF” episode on “Leonie Dawson Refuses To Be Categorised” podcast… available on Spotify, iTunes and ALL THE THINGS!

P.P.S. Here’s my original blog post from five years ago.