People tell me I am intense. I don’t need them to tell me that, because I feel it from the inside. It is not always easy being intense, but I would never wish to be any other way. This is not a post about autism, although I will talk about being autistic. It is a post about being blessed. I am certainly a person who lives life with intensity. If it is because I am autistic, which I believe it is, then I am grateful for being autistic. I grew up struggling with that, and it has only been recently I have started being grateful for it. The belief for years has been that autistics feel little emotion, but recently doctors, and scientists are realizing that just as with the other things that cause autistics to struggle, the issue is not too little emotion, but arguably too much. Autism seems to center around senses that are wide open, uncensored, where autistics are bombarded by too much information from all sides, and are relatively unable to block it out. But what can sometimes be a struggle is often also a joy. The world – in all its glory – hits me full force. And I enjoy every bit of it. Excitement is my middle name. I even found a “word” for it, years ago. I am – without a doubt – “jumpy-uppy-and-downy” – and to me the biggest problem with that is just getting the spell-checker to let me write it. But seriously, sometimes my “jumpy-uppy-and-downyness” does tend to intimidate people, but I make no apologies for it. I am not planning to temper or lose any portion of my excitement, joy, or appreciation for the world, its people, or the cool things that happen to me, or to the people I care for. That jumpy-uppy-and-downy was what helped me get through the dark times. But now that times aren’t so dark, it is without a doubt the best gift that a “disability” ever gave anyone.