This book is essentially about my life, but names and places have been changed to protect the guilty. Some events have been changed or shifted in time to make the story flow better. As an autistic, I am almost pathologically honest, and throughout most of my life, unfortunately, expected others to be as well. That resulted in a multitude of difficulties which I gradually overcame.
The language in this book reflects the age of the protagonist. It is simple when she is you, but grows increasingly complex as she becomes older. It features Sarah’s friendships, her experiences with dating and the bewilderment she experiences in social relationships. The connection, almost from the start, between Sarah and her husband Tim, as well as the difficulties they encounter, are seen through her eyes.
Sarah goes through many stages as a chemist, the co-founder of a business and finally a writer.
This book explores the challenges inherent not only in being autistic, but in raising children with autism and ushering them through adulthood. Sarah’s two sons function at very different levels and both their differences and commonalities are highlighted. The sensory difficulties encountered by both children and adults with autism are also explored.
The events in the book reflect Sarah’s perception of the world at every stage of her life and how her failure to understand basic human behavior provides her with continual challenges in both her personal and business life. The also reflect the type of frauds that may be perpetrated on the innocent and unwary.
I. Sarah’s earliest memories as a child, including undiagnosed symptoms of autism.
II. Sarah’s early school years and her difficulties fitting in.
III. Sarah’s Preteen years, her discovery of fantasy and fandom
IV. Sarah’s teen years at the Bronx High School of Science and forming friendships within Young Mensa
VI. Sarah’s experience with sexual assault
VII. Sarah’s college years and her discovery of deception among her classmates
VIII. Sarah meets her husband Tim at graduate school. They find out they are both singers and use music to form social bonds. They are also science fictions fans, especially of Star Trek. Sarah also begins an involvement in the church.
IX. Marriage and the birth of Sarah’s first son.
X. Sarah begins a career as a chemist.
XI. The birth of a second son and the diagnosis of both sons with autism.
XII. Sarah copes with her sons and becomes an activist in the autism community, while maintaining a career.
XIII. Sarah and Tim are diagnosed as autistic and decide to keep it under wraps
XIII. Sarah continues her career while moving up in the ranks of the autism world.
IX. Sarah becomes co-owner of a company
X. Sarah finds out the hard way about securities fraud.
XII. Sarah and Tim prepare the boys to leave the next.
XI Sarah continues in business as chemist until finally making the transition to being a writer, a career in which she is more content and develops a more optimistic view of the world.