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[personal profile] amberite_archive
Please pardon the long silence.

I wish I had come sooner, but wishing and regrets only delay me further. So here I am, without further ado.

When you have an autistic/ADHD brain, with fiddly frontal lobes and tetchy dopamine regulation, flow psychology becomes ludicrously, absurdly important to the exercise of free will, as do patterns of feedback and reward.

I can lift hand-weights until I get bored and have modest gains at most, but recently I swam in the ocean again, just two days of paddling against waves, and can still see the difference in my upper arms. Dynamic resistance, a balance of support and hindrance in motion. I can only push through the immediate burn of exertion when there is something equal to it within me and behind me to push with.

For a while that wasn't there. More recently, just this year, I've had the impetus but not the environment. The understanding that I need to swim again, literally and metaphorically, has been present, but I also need currents to push against. Forces that pull at me and call me into motion.

And the ones I've had access to recently have ranged from suboptimal to downright toxic, which is, I guess, what you get when the Reward Machine is run by the Advertising Machine these days, and has tuned its mechanism to extract will and money from our behavior very finely indeed.

I've had difficulty finishing books, in the last few years - something I'd been doing without trouble for my entire life before. (That too is coming back.)

I blame brain chemistry and burnout, but also, the online environments I've been in have provided the wrong kind of flow; tiny bites of erudition, instantaneous response. Dynamism, turbulance, but almost no resistance.

I came to those environments because my wrists were giving me trouble (they still are, but if I avoid rapid messaging, I at least have the physical stamina now to write a screenful of text) and stayed because my cognition and mental pacing recalibrated to match, and I couldn't find an exit point, a place where it made more sense in the immediate to return to...

...this, to thinking out loud with genuine structure. Missives complete within themselves, instead of just random scraps. A space into which determination and identity can unfold.

It seemed so difficult, because the things that were easy were also stealing from me.

So a few days ago I reconnected with old friends in person, and we agreed, an accountability pact, to return together here, because this is where there's a living architecture that gives us space to be ourselves and escape the cycle, and we've all known this for a while (but it's so hard, when you're being stolen from, and everyone else is being stolen from, and...) and here I am.

It feels better already.

Let us Make something once more.
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