About rookin

English... Dislikes most food... Likes random ramblings...

Some time later…

So… It’s been a while since I last wrote anything. I’ve been meaning to post, but I just haven’t had the time to sit down and do it. As you can imagine my life is a lot different now.

So what have I been up to? Well a lot and a little.

I have given up on maintaining a social media presence.

I’ve never really been a Facebook person and Twitter wasn’t making me happy. I had lost touch with the people I felt close to and it just wasn’t the same place it used to be.

I think the nail in the coffin was when I discovered that someone had stolen my identity on Twitter. They were using my photos for a twitter account where they claimed that I/they were born in the wrong body and wrong skin colour. So I/they were actually a black woman born in a white mans body? I didn’t really understand it. I contacted the person and asked them remove my photos and they complied. I didn’t take the matter any further but after that and the issues I’ve had in the past with online bullying I felt like I had had enough.

I’m almost 40.

I keep thinking that once I reach 40 there will be an chemical change in my brain and I will suddenly become an adult and know how to do adult things. It seems only like the other day when I wrote 36 things about being thirty six so I am not going to write a list of 40 things about being forty but here is a short list of things that I assume will happen once I turn 40;

  • Being able to change a tyre and do basic car mechanics
  • The ability to do household maintenance and repairs.
  • Make responsible decisions.
  • Know what I am actually doing in life.

When it comes to life I just wing it. I know you will say that everyone does that but I really have no idea what I am doing. I just plod along hoping that I don’t upset of offend anyone on the way. So I am looking forward to the time that I become a responsible adult and then everything will just click into place.

I’m a Father.

What can I say? I’m the father of an amazing little boy. He has helped me understand exactly what unconditional love is all about. Any news story or film which involves a child getting hurt or killed affects me like never before. Your whole world changes when you are parent. For me it is a change for the better. I am so proud of him. Seeing his little smiling face warms my heart. I love watching him learn and grow. Being a father is amazing. I love it.

That’s about it really.

I will try and write more in the future as it is nice to look back and see how things have changed. I also find that writing can be very cathartic. I could have written a whole article on how I am almost on Level 31 on Pokemon Go for example. As you can tell I like to live my life to the fullest. So till the next time, take care.

UPDATE: I reached level 31 on Pokemon Go on 13/10/16

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Rowan

I have been sat at the keyboard wondering how to start writing a blog post of a life changing event and I am at a loss. I am a father. It’s amazing. I have a little boy called Rowan who was born on Wednesday 21st January 2015 at 3:26am, weighing 7lbs 2oz. He was due today but arrived 5 days early. He is such cute little thing. I have taken so many photos of him that I think I might have exceeded my iCloud storage space. I have to stop myself from becoming one of those people on Facebook that posts 1000 photos of their child online. I can see why people do it. I am so proud of him. If you do want to see more photos you can view them here.

So how did this miracle happen? (no not that bit). The story of his birth started a week ago. Sally started having pains while we were watching Broadchurch. We weren’t sure if things had really started or not. For the last few weeks of pregnancy Sally had found it more comfortable sleeping on the sofa, so I went up to bed early that night as we knew something was going to be happening soon. At 2am Sally woke to me to say we needed to go the hospital and so I got myself up and ready. We arrived at St Richards Hospital at 3am but discovered that Sally wasn’t ready, but was allowed to stay until she was. I was sent home to get some sleep but knowing that I might get a phone call at any time sleep was far from my mind. When I arrived in hospital Tuesday there hadn’t been much change. Sally was in the Bassett Room on Tangmere Ward. still in pain and having contractions but things weren’t really moving along. At 6pm Sally was moved to Room 2 of the Labour ward where she had an epidural as she was in so much pain due to the baby being in the occiput posterior (OP) position. We waited, and waited, but there was still no sign of the little one moving round into the correct position. As time went on this started to be a bit of a concern as the contractions were squashing baby rather than pushing. At 3am Wednesday morning the consultant spoke to us about options. We could wait till he moved round, which could take a few more hours or deliver him via C-section. He gave us a few minutes to think about it but we all agreed that it would be safer for the baby to be delivered as soon as possible. They prepped Sally for theatre and a few moments later Rowan was born…IMG_0951 His first little cries were beautiful to hear. They cleaned him and wrapped him up in a towel and gave him a little hat knitted by Friends of St Richards Hospital and put him in Sally’s arms. We were so happy. There he was, little Rowan, who truly is little bundle of joy. Sally was then stitched back together and moved from theatre back to Room 2 to rest before being moved to Executive Room 7 on Tangmere Ward. We spent the rest of Wednesday at the hospital where Sally and Rowan had regular check ups. We had to cancel our Tesco home delivery as there was no chance of us coming home that day. The man on the phone from Tesco was ecstatic to here our news as well as everyone else we came in contact with. The day and night became a blur. Neither of us had really slept since Monday. Thursday morning arrived and it was another special day. Not only were we told that it was ok for Sally to go home but it was also more importantly Sally’s Birthday. Rowan was the best birthday present anyone could ask for. We put clipped him into his car seat and set off home to start our new life as a family.IMG_0990 When we got home there were a large bunch of flowers on our doorstep. Who could this be from? Family? Friends? When we read the card we couldn’t help but be moved. It was from Tesco. Let me clear this up. The flowers were from a local florist, paid for, with well wishes from Tesco… The supermarket!  How lovely is that? It must have been from the man on the phone. Thank you Tesco’s, you are amazing. It’s been 5 days now and what can I say? Things are great. Ok, he isn’t the best sleeper at the moment and likes to fill his nappy just as I have finished changing him but who cares about those things? That’s the sort of things that babies are meant to do. Most of the time he is just being cute. When I look at him I imagine all the things he must be thinking…RowanI could just watch him, hold him, cuddle him, and love him forever. In fact I think I will.

I love you little one. x

Am I a good man?

feelingsAnxiety levels are pretty high at the moment. Well I think it’s anxiety, it’s hard to tell? I have this feeling in my chest that’s warm but has a hole in it. A twisted empty space that might implode. Is that anxiety? Who knows? Emotions are funny things that don’t always make sense. Why do some people cry when they are happy? Why do some people hurt the ones they love? I have a hard time understanding.

When I am in emotional turmoil and I am trying to make sense of these feelings I can’t help but think about Doctor Who and what happens to The Doctor when he regenerates. Not only does his physical appreance change but his personality changes too. One of the best examples of this was the change from the 11th Doctor to the 12th. The 12th Doctor found himself asking his companion “Am I a good man?”.

It’s questions like this that I am always asking myself. We always like to think of ourselves as the hero. We are fair and just. If we saw someone in distress we would be there to help. However I don’t really see myself as that person. I sometimes find it hard to care and feel empathy. At times I feel like I have a dark passenger like in Dexter. My dark passenger is not a killer, just a side of me which has no compassion, no feelings, no nothing, just empty. My dark passenger really doesn’t care. He is selfish and antisocial. He is everything I hate about myself.

Most of the time I have control of the negative emotions, I ignore my dark passenger. I have the strength to be kind, caring and compassionate. But as time goes by I get the feeling that I am being false and I am aware that I am faking a smile. That’s when my dark passenger wins. He has tricked me into thinking that I was in control when it was really him all along. Other times I don’t fight it and I wallow in the emptiness. It is a constant internal struggle. Is my dark passager the true me? Am I evil, or am I really a good man?

What happened to the flying car?

I know why it’s 2015 & we don’t have flying cars like in Back to the Future…

hovercar

It’s all down to owner of the Rolls Royce…

crash

http://backtothefuture.wikia.com/…/Rolls-Royce_Silver_Cloud…

Stay with me on this one…

Because Marty changes time in 1985 so he doesn’t crash into the Rolls Royce, the owner is no longer devastated by damage that was caused to his car in the crash!

What Marty didn’t know is that because of the crash, the owner of the Rolls started thinking of ways the crash could have been avoided. If only Marty had turned in time or Marty’s pick-up truck had just flown over the Roll Royce, the accident would have never happened… If only one of the vehicles were flying? That’s it FLYING!

Yes, you guessed it. The man in the Rolls Royce ended up inventing the flying car but because the crash never happened, he never had that idea, so that’s why we don’t have flying cars…

Creative-Rolls-Royce-Flying-Car-Wallpaper

THANKS MARTY!

National Poetry Day

It is national poetry day today so I am going to post a cheesy poem that I wrote when I was a young teenager. It was published in a book of short poems and appeared on Ceefax (remember Ceefax?).

I made my mind to dance and play
People don’t respect the things we say
From the skin of your T-shirt
To the Crown of Thorns
A little boy with crazy dreams
A lot of goals… 

I then wrote a second part to it but I can’t remember passed the first 2 lines…

Dreams are written with woven thread
Imprints in a childs head
 
(blah, blah, blah, something, something)

It’s amazing the things we can remember off by heart. I still remember the song I had to sing when I was a Oompa Loompa in a school play of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. The way my teacher put across how important it was for us to remember lines was by telling us the story of when she was in the second world war and all the children in her class had to remember the serial number of their gas masks and where it was at all times. If they didn’t know, and the bombs fell, they might die! I was five. That story put so much fear into me that I learnt my lines off by heart, just incase the bombs fell and I would need to sing to the enemy…

Augustus Gloop! Augustus Gloop!
That great big greedy nincompoop!
How long could we allow this beast
To gorge and guzzle, feed and feast
On everything he wanted to?
Great Scott! It simply will not do.
So what we do in cases such
As this, we use the gentle touch
And carefully we take the brat
And turn him into something that
Will give great pleasure to us all
A doll, for instance, or a ball.
Or marbles or a rocking horse.
But this revolting boy, of course,
Is so unutteralby vile,
So greedy, foul, and infantile.
“Come on!” We cry. “The time is ripe
To send him shooting up the pipe!”

 (please take note that I know that these are not the exact words that Roald Dahl wrote but they were the words that we learnt… Well, I hope they are the words we learnt… If they aren’t and the bombs do fall, I’m in trouble.) 

Lost.

I feel a bit lost at the moment, actually lost is a very good word to use; 

lost/lɒst/

adjective1. Unable to find one’s way; not knowing one’s whereabouts.

1.1 Unable to be found.

1.2 [predicative] Unable to understand or to cope  with a situation.

2. That has been taken away or cannot be recovered.

2.1 (Of time or an opportunity) not used advantageously; wasted.

2.2 Having died or been destroyed.

 I am lost. I don’t really know what I am doing or where I am going. My thoughts and emotions seem scrambled. I am not good with emotions. I have a problem reading them in others and I have a problem understanding them in myself. I have lost my confidence. I feel self-destructive and paranoid. I don’t trust myself. I am a confused mess so apologies if this post doesn’t make sense. So… Where to start? How do I put across to you how I feel and what’s going on in my head without just making short statements and sentences? Why do I feel so lost? Who knows? My subconscious must hate me. Saying that there has been a lot of things going on in my life at the moment which has affected my mental state. I recently bought a house, I’ve been promoted at work, my grandmother died, and my wife is having a baby…. So yeah, I guess I do have a reason to feel a bit lost at the moment. Lots of changes are happening and it’s messing with my mind, heart and soul. I don’t know how to express these feelings and who to express them too. Since cutting myself off from most of the internet I don’t know who to talk to, or what to say.I was having a conversation with some friends the other day about how I find it hard to talk to people. I know it’s not just me. Everyone seems to have this problem. You want to talk to someone but you don’t want to be a burden. Your friends say they are there for you whenever you need them, but what if it’s four in the morning? What if they are out with friends? No one really knows when it is and isn’t a good time to call. Sometimes you don’t want to talk to a friend. Friends can lie. Friends will say things just to make you feel better rather than be honest and tell you the truth. You want to talk to a stranger who is out of the loop. Sometimes you want advice, sometimes you don’t want advice and you just want to off load. You just want someone who will listen.

The solution for this would be a mobile phone app. The app would collect the contacts on your phone and connect you to all other people with the app. When you need someone to talk to you just tap the app. It would then flag your name to everyone on your contacts and alert all other users of the app. everyone will see that you need someone to talk to. Once you have a connection the app will remove the flag against your name until you tap the app again. That way you will never feel alone.

I would only use the app to offload my worries. I don’t really listen to other people’s advice. I think I would also be the worst person when it comes to listening to other people’s problems. This is where my empathy issues kick in. I tend to be a heartless bastard at times. I don’t have much sympathy for people who wallow in self-pity, even when I know that I can be one of those people at times. I don’t really have anything to complain about either. I have a great life, the perfect wife, caring friends, a roof over my head and everything to look forward to. It’s not like I am alone or homeless. I just need to a friendly ear at times.

Like I said at the beginning, this post won’t really make much sense. I think what I am trying to say is that people feel lost all the time and deal with it in different ways. My way of dealing with it at the moment is by writing this. I am not very good at writing but by putting words down on a page it helps me off load some of my emotions and organise my brain. Like I said earlier I’m not after advice. I just wanted to put my words out there.

Where’s RoOkin?

I am not in a good place at the moment. One of the problems with having Asperger syndrome is understanding how others feel and what other people mean. It can be very confusing and frustrating at times. It is hard for me to explain to people who don’t have this condition to understand how difficult it can be.

To help you understand what it is like to have Asperger’s and how confusing it can be let me give you a few examples.

Let’s say there is a comic book character called Wally The Waiter. This is Wally…

wally.jpg

Wally is a clumsy waiter who is always falling over things and getting in trouble. He doesn’t mean to be so clumsy but he can’t help it. Some people are just clumsy. He may be clumsy but he always works hard. He is always busy making sure everyone gets their food and he always makes sure that everyone is happy. He is working hard in the picture below. Can you find him? Where’s Wally?

whereswally.jpg

Now if you are American or from another part of the world you might find this task far easier and less confusing than the British people reading this. I am hoping that the task of finding Wally might confuse you. Not because you are looking for him but because to my English eyes there are two Wally’s. There is my made up comic book character ‘Wally the Waiter’ and there is this guy…

wallyface

So you might be forgiven for being confused. American’s on the other hand might not be as be confused. When I asked “Where’s Wally?” They are looking for ‘Wally The Waiter’, they are not looking for ‘Waldo’ as that’s what Wally is called in America.

This type of confusion is what a lot of people with Asperger’s have to deal with. Something you might find simple to understand, like the Americans looking for Wally, might be really hard for someone with Asperger’s to understand. Just like the British people looking for Wally.

Social interaction can be difficult for people who have Asperger syndrome and because it is not a condition that has any visible signs it can be hard to spot. Like you can’t tell who is a vegetarian just by looking at them. It’s only really when it comes to having a meal that being a vegetarian might have problems. For example…

Imagine you’re a vegetarian. You are far away from home and you’re sat on your own in the only restaurant in town and you are starving. No matter how hard you look at the menu nothing on there seems to be clear if it contains meat or not. There is only one waiter in this restaurant (let’s call him Wally) and he looks like a friendly sort of chap. He comes up to you and asks if you are ready to order. You ask him if anything on the menu is suitable for vegetarians. He looks a bit annoyed and then goes away and brings back another menu. However the menu he has brought back just appears to be the same menu. You find this confusing. Does this mean that he has understood that you are a vegetarian and all the food on the menu is ok to eat? Before you have time to ask him the waiter has gone. So you just sit there wondering what to do. The waiter returns and asks if you are ready to order. “Is this same menu that I had before? So everything on here is Vegetarian?” you ask him. This makes the waiter angry. Instead of answering your question he just gives you a long stare and tells you he will return when you are ready to order. So you just sit there feeling hungry and confused as the only person who can answer your question of what you can order is the waiter. You call the waiter over and ask for something without meat. This makes the waiter very angry and he storms off. Is he going to return with food? Meat free food? Is he going to return at all? You sit there feeling hungry, upset and confused waiting for the waiter to return. You then see the waiter happily chatting to other customers. Maybe the waiter isn’t angry after all and your meal on it’s way soon. You wait, and wait. You try and catch the waiters eye and he finally comes over. You ask him how long your meal is going to be? He starts shouting at you and then kicks you out of the restaurant. You have no idea what has just happened. You didn’t mean to upset the waiter, you were just hungry and waiting something to eat.

So being someone with Asperger’s is like being that vegetarian and dealing with someone with Asperger’s is like being the waiter. They both saw things differently. The vegetarian felt isolated and alone and just needed the menu to be explained to them. The waiter on the other hand just thought that the vegetarian was deliberately trying to make his life difficult, but he just didn’t really understand what a vegetarian was. If the waiter had explained what each meal on the menu was then there wouldn’t have been a situation. The vegetarian would have had their meal and the waiter wouldn’t have been so angry.

Having this condition isn’t something that can be fixed. It is just how the brain is wired. like being left handed or right handed. I am left handed, and no matter how hard I try to write with my right hand it just doesn’t look or feel correct to me. I will never be able to use my right hand in the same way I can use my left.

There are lots of situations in life which can be difficult if you have Asperger syndrome or need to deal with someone with Asperger’s. It can be a bit of a mine field. You think everything is going fine but then one day something just blows up in your face. Social media can be like a mine field. It is full of people who have their own ideas, agendas, and their own way of expressing themselves. Lots of waiters, vegetarians, Wally’s, Waldo’s and you don’t know who is whom. Some people you might feel close to because they say things that you can relate to, they on the other hand might hate you. Some people you might dislike but they think you are awesome. Some people clash, some people connect. It can be very confusing for the average person to navigate the online world of social groups and cliques, so imagine what it is like for someone who has Asperger’s. There are people who find swearing at others acceptable and those who take insults to heart. I find it hard to understand the difference between friends having ‘friendly banter’ and two strangers having an argument. 

I often struggle to understand how my words might be interpreted by others, and as a result can find that I have caused offence when this was the furthest thing from what was intended. I hate to think that I have ever upset anyone. It is never my intention to do so. I don’t like to say bad things about others, I know how horrible it feels. I always feel the need to fix things and make things better but then even that can be interpreted as being meddling and intrusive at times. I have always been a bit of a sensitive soul, and some things said online I will never forget. I have been on the receiving end of abuse there was that person who wanted to set me on fire and dance around my burning remains. I may have problem understanding others at times but I’m sure the person who wrote that didn’t want to be my friend. Either that or they are/were a friend who was ‘just having a laugh’ and this was their idea of ‘friendly banter’. I just don’t know.

Because of this struggle I have with understanding others I have decided to remove myself from some social media sites. Why remove yourself you might say? Why not just leave your account and just not use the sites? I did try that, but I found it hard to let go. Hard to step away. I would just keep going back just to see how people are and what they are doing. I just really need some time off line to sort my head out. Saying that I haven’t gone completely, I still have a online presence, so who knows what will happen. I may return, I may not, I don’t know. But if you look, I’m sure you will find me.