Paul Isaacs' Blog

Autism from the inside


Leave a comment

To My Gramp – Gilbert Harpwood A Man Who Enjoyed Life

My Gramp Gilbert Harpwood was a man who enjoyed life to the full he was an avid gardener tending to his vegetables and flowers with relish and passion, eager to plant his seeds that would blossom each year such as his runner beans, cabbages and brussel sprouts they tasted lovely and as he said it is because they’re organic.

Gramp 1930s

He was fascinated by the weather noting and logging the rainfalls and temperature changes through the years in his little note book which he called his “diary” which he has many of and would be interesting to look back at what he noticed over the years.

His other main passion was football and he was an avid support of Oxford United all of his adult life going to the Manor Stadium and also Kassam, he made many friends there and made lots of fans around him laugh with his antics and child-like wit which came in the form of chants, laugher, heckling and being accompanied by his little teddy mascot called Messy which he put in his bag with his little head poking out. Gramp always liked to imagine he was watching the game too.

Gramp Oxfod United.JPG

My Gramp was a pragmatic, idiosyncratic, humorous and a largely misunderstood man he was caring, loving, helpful and affectionate in his own unique way to his family and close friends. He was a very guarded man and liked to keep himself to himself only opening up to people whom he felt comfortable with. I am grateful for knowing him and spending time with him listening to his stories of old, wisdom, humour, political views and so forth.

My Nan and Gramp had a wonderful relationship which last over 60 years during his passing she viewed him as her rock they had a deep love for each other which last a lifetime with treasured loyalty to his wife, both sharing precious moments such as marriages, births and anniversary celebrations. Gramp’s favourite time of the year was Christmas time in which he would like to play the jester eagerly taking part in jokes, enjoying the food, the TV programs and other festivities with the family.

He made firm contributions to village such as aiding the management of the roads around the area, letting the council know about filling in the pot holes and also taking a general interest in village life attending the meetings at the hut.

 

Nan & Gramp 50th Wedding Anniversary

He was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome a form of autism in 2011 at the age of 84 which in many ways surprised me that he was open enough to go to a diagnostic session and open up about his life with such candour and honesty, when the session was finished he concluded that is “why he was like he was”.  Reading books on the subject from the library.

Despite his cancer he carried on till the end a lover of life and person who wanted live and he will do in our hearts and minds forever if there is a cloud up the sky with a garden patch ready to be tended to I know my Gramp will be there ready to tend to it.

I love you Gramp and thank you. 🙂

Paul Isaacs 2017

 


Leave a comment

Being Thankful For My Parents

Mum and Dad Early 80s

Please note this is from a personal perspective

It may sound like a cliche in many ways to create a blog with a title such as “Thankful for my parents”  but that is how I feel I know that many people may not for many reasons feel the same as me and that is fine.

I am thankful for them because they  have given me good boundaries, have treated me as a human being then growing up as an infant, teenager and now as an adult, they do not let my disability “define the whole package” (I have written many a blog about that subject), guided me to know that failure and being wrong is normal part of life, to accept and take responsibility for both positive and negative actions, to help people who need it, to always be truthful and be true to yourselves.

I value their sage wisdom as many of these “mantras” and “life skills” come from past mistakes and “failures” but as my parents have noted failures are the fruits of success and success comes in many different forms as example setters for us all.

Paul Isaacs 2016

 


Leave a comment

Meeting Up With The King’s

 

This week I had the pleasure of meeting up with the King’s they are family that live in the north of England in the Wakefield. Sharon and Richard have three children on the autism spectrum Rosie who is diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome, Lenny with Classic autism and Daisy with Kabuki Syndrome and Classic autism.

Staying with the family was very interesting and reflective on my part, as all the family showed deep love and care for each other being honest about the difficulties and  balanced about them showing deep care and empowerment for each other.

Their kindness and humility was reflected in the hospitality shown to me and the others we met on our travels to the park during my visit it is sometimes the little things that matter as much as the big ones. I look forward to meeting them again.

Paul Isaacs  2016

 


Leave a comment

When People Have Cancer And Others Are So Selfish

Dad 2012Think About This?  

I like this a lot me Dad gets this all the the time you “look well”, “you seem well”, “you look ok”, “you look healthy” or the best on “you can take a tablet for that?” well when my Dad is

  • In Perssiant pain
  • Fatigue
  • Depression
  • Reacting to drugs on a daily basis
  • Blood infusions (cleaing his blood) on weekly basis
  • Muscles that tighten on a weekly basis
  • Soft tissue that is so damaged that he has scarring on his lungs
  • Graft vs host disease that leaves him in pain and fatigue
  • Nearly dying in hospital on five separate occlusions
  • Leukaemia that effects his auto-immune system and has done for over 6 years

Then maybe just maybe will people think about my Dad ‘s or our family’s reality? Rather than ignoring him on the street or where he lives (yes that has happened on more than once) even if you don’t speak to him. don’t be so selfish, narcissistic and ignorant to think that everything is going to be on your terms and is always about you.

My Dad is a humble, easy-going, socially accepting man and is still a very positive man despite the difficulties listed above. 🙂

What is Sick Supposed To Look Like Anyways? Video Link 

Paul Isaacs 2016


Leave a comment

Autism & What About Humanity? And Connectivity?

Family Christmas Early 90s

Dad, Gramp & Me Just “Being”

Autism it just “is” when I go out in the world the biggest thing for me is to be apart of humanity, people, beings – so when I go down the street what do you “see” and what do.

I “see” – “Autism” is a name for a clustering of pre-existing conditions which I have which for me are (PERCEPTUAL, LANGUAGE EXPRESSION, AUDITORY, LANGUAGE RECEPTION, BRAIN INJURY, MOVEMENT, COGNITION) this is PERSONAL to me but they affect how I process things/understand things – they do not define my TOTALITY nor are they “ME” I am artistic, idiosyncratic, emotive, emotional, creative, solitary, serious, funny, silly etc those things are what is called shared things with other people (regardless of any disability or not).

Autism is something I am neither proud or nor ashamed of it just “is” I was born a person so I would rather people see me as a person (as everyone else should be) not to be swept up by stereotypes, or militancy or “them” and “us” perceptions, but be seen as person. I am not a an “object” to be observed nor am I a “genius” to be revered – so if we look at being balanced about things then we open up more doors then close them. I am no “better” nor “worse”. We (as human beings) are all equal. 

Paul Isaacs 2015


Leave a comment

Family Members, Emotional Fallout’s & Positive Strategies For The Future

Mum and Dad 2005“I live with the fallout of people’s actions and cruel words towards Paul, and I suffer as much as Paul because of their insensitivity. All Paul wants to do is help others, but I find when he needs help professionals don’t want to know. I feel so upset.”

I feel that as a family we are close, we always have been my Father and Mother as I have documented in this blog, my books and speeches have been empowering to both my development and confidence over years They never over-protected me, molly coddled me or babied me they gave me rules, contexts and tools for life. Hence why my first job was 15 years they knew I would only learn from practice not just theory. 

Mum & Dad Bournmouth 2000sMy Mum’s worries as a family member come from two angles firstly the problem with over-projecting one’s point (to the point of emotional insensitivity) not acknowledging the fallout of a person’s words creating a ripple effect and second is the promises that my Mum was given many years ago haven’t been fulfilled – however as a family unit we talk and think of strategies to move forward and carry one within a positive framework not matter what negativity comes our way.

Paul Isaacs Adult With Autism 2014