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  • Writer's pictureThe White Paper Journalist

A Pretty Big Week. (Pt.1)

Updated: Mar 24, 2022


It's been a pretty big week. I contacted Dr. Wenn Lawson to try and get a diagnosis for whatever may be wrong with me. At least whatever it is that makes me see the world differently from everyone else.


I had explained that if I was going to do this it needed to be conversational. He sent me some forms to fill in before arranging a call. I didn't expect it, but those forms nearly broke me.


Just last week I had explained to Kali that forms and documents, bureaucracy of any kind is something my mind can't make sense of. And now I have to fill out forms that may determine my actual sanity. Great.

I was close to tears throughout the whole thing. In fact, I haven't felt as emotional as I have over the last few days for a long time. I'm not really one for tears. But there was such a sense of inevitability about the whole thing. I knew a big shift was about to happen. There was also an overlap, a back story as to why I was so strung out.


I was excited to be heading back to work on Tuesday morning. All of the guys would be there and Dave who I hadn't seen for over a year due to the pandemic, or our age, or whatever. But I knew when I saw them, I would be second-guessing each interaction, wondering how they had been perceiving me all this time. Was I going to be the last person to figure this out? Did everyone else already know?


Having already approached Dr. Lawson, I had started filling out the forms in bed the night before I left at around 2330 and after a couple of glasses of wine. The questions were easy enough but the format made my head scream with defiance. I was only allowed to answer questions in one of four ways. “Strongly Agree, Slightly Agree, Slightly Disagree, Strongly Disagree.” By halfway through the first form my fucking mind nearly collapsed in on itself.


My brain likes to second guess every possible and potential outcome. I call it the corridor. Every decision I have to make or conversation I might have sends me into a hallway with infinite doors lining the walls. Each door has to be opened to explore the possibilities and potential outcomes lying behind it. But I have no control over which door I might open next and each door leads to a new corridor.


My mind likes to create and fill as much space as possible. My mind the chameleon, the imitator, and the fraud. These questions made me reassess my experiences. They made me reassess how I was perceived. Why I had acted how I had. They humiliated me. Suddenly I was seeing myself through a very new lens.

The liner notes stated if anyone question was left unanswered the results would be inconclusive. So instead of not answering, I would answer them twice. “Strongly Agree, Strongly Disagree” Both answers were the absolute truth, so why not.


I couldn't believe the frustration I felt at being placed in such narrow parameters. I can't remember the questions now, but I would be forced to the next day.


By the time I got to the third sheet, the format had at least changed. Now I was to be asked more specific questions and allowed to answer yes or no in my own words and even 'encouraged' (given the space for a five-word answer) to express my thought in more detail.


But I couldn't understand the questions, or more to the point, how I was meant to answer definitively when the possibilities were endless. Social Cues? I didn't know what that meant. I just didn't know what I was being asked of me. One question might compound my indifference to the documents. The next might make me want to antagonize my assessor. I thought this was meant to be conversational?


I was being made to feel like a mad man. Before I got halfway through the forms I was embarrassed, sad, and humiliated. I had to get up early for the drive to work. I turned the computer off and fell asleep.





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