Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Prosopagnosia and my need to be busy V need to be helpful

Prosopagnosia in my case is  the inability to recognise people when they are seen out of context - for example a nurse not in her uniform or a teacher not at the school - leaving me wondering how they can recognise and remember who I am when to me whilst it is obvious that we must have met before when they call me by name.  I have no idea who they are without longer time to process additional information and look for clues unless they outright tell me Oh I am so and so from .. I realised when talking to my son who has a confirmed diagnosis of Aspergers that her too suffers from it and we had a lovely chat about how amazing it is that other people can simply look at a face without the additional clues and just recognise who that person is and even name them . It was lovely to have a connection with him and to share stories . Sometimes hiding our disabilities or differences makes us feel better , but the older I get and the more I deal with new people on a day to day basis the more I find myself having to explain about he challenges I face.
 I consider myself a student observer of people I am always seeking those extra clues to try and from a memory in my mind to help me recollect who they are not by their faces but by what they wear or what they tell me . I am fascinated by what others can do and how they do it . I enjoy helping others far more than doing anything for myself. I have stepped into a world of networking and face the regular challenge of association of faces and names .
I was asked recently why I work .. My answer  came that 'I need to be busy '. In reality I think it is deeply routed in that I need a challenge a goal to keep me grounded . I need to be learning about people everyday so that I can help and feel needed . I have possibly been like that since early childhood defined by my ability to be of use to others .  I don't have huge career goals or deadlines or stress of that kind. I am at my best when I have done something that I have difficulty with , overcoming  difficulty , fighting the struggle, researching the obstacle not for myself but in order to help someone else .
 I think perhaps that is why when I find something that helps me , a book, a product, a song, a feeling or a thought I am compelled to share it . Sometimes I think it must drive my family nuts that I seem to be forever researching but every now and then when I can help with something it is hugely rewading . You cannot buy a feeling , and there is no price on self worth , so simply the feeling of being needed, having helped and being connected to a sometimes overwhelming outside world is all I need.
On that note I am off for a much needed nap as I had an unpleasant afternoon in hospital having biopsies and need to catch up so that I can enjoy a networking picnic tomorrow with my younger 3 kids - it made me laugh when they asked will they know anyone there . I view it is a brand new opportunity to learn and get to know people a challenge - how different it must be  for my children who  crave knowing if a familiar face will be there in order to to  look forward to something  - do write to me as I am very curious about how you experience your world . 

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