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Monday, Feb. 10, 2020 - 9:09 a.m.

So now that the shop in indieme is up, now I can sit around and watch nothing happen there too, in all likelihood.

Still bugged about yesterday. There’s that perfect storm feeling of being, first of all, overwhelmed by new people and noise and an unfamiliar situation, and stressed out because of things needing to get done and I don’t necessarily know what they are and how to prioritize them or sequence them. Then there’s people asking questions and demanding answers from me because I’m The Mom. By “people” I mean my parents in law. They think they’re being polite by being deferential but really they are just stressing me the fuck out. Or maybe there’s an element of “I didn’t agree to plan this so I am not in charge of it”, but also I didn’t plan it either so wtf. Where do you want this? Where do you want that? Shouldn’t this go somewhere else? And the “shouldn’t...?” gets to me because clearly they have an opinion and so why are they asking me, I who have no opinion. “I have no opinion about where that should go.” “Well, you need to have an opinion, because it’s time to put it somewhere.” The whole thing reminded me of my wedding, but on a smaller scale.

So that’s the first order stress. Second order stress is my mother either watching me the whole time or asking me what she can do to help. I don’t fucking know. I can barely decide what I’m supposed to be doing? You? Shutting the fuck up and not staring at me would help.

And then from there I get hypersensitive. Hypersensitive as in when mil is coaching grandchild through some hosting niceties and beaming with approval, and I feel it as an attack on me because I know she thinks that’s something I should be doing but all I have in my repertoire is “hi/bye, thank you (so much) for coming!”.

Another one, from the other night: I finally sat down after many hours of being up and baking cupcakes. She comes in, asks me about something I know fuck all about, clearly looking like she expects me to get up and help her with whatever. I say I’m just now sitting down after hours on my feet, that’s why I’m not getting up. She says “well I haven’t sat down in hours either”, but they just got back from dinner, I suppose she ate standing. But let us ask ourselves what that communicated? That she is capable of doing this thing, and I am choosing not to, so I am either unhelpful or lazy because I am not pushing through like she does. She is more ABLE to push through her discomfort, and has internalized ableism to think that she should have to. I’m glad she has the capacity for it, but I’m not lazy because I don’t.

J always says none of this is intentional on her part, but the overall effect is what it is. Impact > intention. She may not be _trying_ to make me feel bad the way my mother does, but IT DOES and it triggers the resentment and at the very least I am very aware of all the ways in which she sincerely believes I am incompetent and fails to hide that opinion.

All I want is for people not to expect more of me than I can give, and to accept that I am doing my best and forgive me if it’s not the same as theirs, even if I’m younger and good at other things. I don’t mind being pushed a little but when it stops working, cut me some slack.

Back to the party: And I kept leaving to hide and then I come back knowing they’ve been wondering why I keep leaving. I shouldn’t keep leaving. And so I try not to leave but stand there looking lost, my mother staring at me, and I’m shaking my hands and then they start asking what’s wrong with me and that’s the most offense thing. Specifically asking about my stims. In a way meant to point out to me that obviously something is wrong with me and I should stop doing it because I wouldn’t want anyone to think that SOMETHING IS WRONG WITH ME. “What’s wrong with your hand? Does your wrist hurt? Do you have Tourette’s or something?”

And so here is where it links back to other stuff. The people online who confidently and arrogantly proclaim that anyone who self-diagnoses is just looking for attention. The reason I can’t fully come out is because of that attitude. But that attitude sees me acting “oddly” and struggling and bears down on me. No tolerance for behavior like mine. Which itself is so mild that if they did know, they would call me “high functioning”. But then also ask why I can’t do my job as parent and hostess in this situation that I was not responsible for arranging.

Also I do believe that stimming openly is a radical act and one I will never censor in myself, precisely because it needs to be normalized so no one will be made to feel bad about how they manage their discomfort, the same discomfort those critical people are subjecting them to.

But my mother and my in-laws will continue to wonder why I seem to avoid them, when this shit only snowballs over time.

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