"Joshie! Glad to see you back on your feet, kiddo!" I cringe at the sound of the nickname. When you get a nickname, it's not something you ask for, and it's not really something you can stop, either. My name is Joshua. Not Josh. Not Joshie. Not kiddo. I glare at Ham (which I firmly believe is NOT the name on his birth certificate) and sit down on the couch. They have the couch because it's supposed to be comfortable, but it's far from that. It's rubbery and gets hot under my thighs, causing much stickage and pain when standing. "So how've you been doing, kid? How long since the last breakdown?" Here they call them breakdowns, to make them seem less dramatic. But in the real world, the place I call Hell, they prefer the term "freakout".
"It's been five days." My mother answers, because she assumes I'm incapable of answering even the simplest of questions. "Ham" nods and scribbles something down on a notepad. "Ham," my assigned "Counsler" (term they use here for Physcologist), looks like a bum. He has a long, scraggily chestnut hair on his chin and a matching set on the top of his head. He dresses in sweatshirts, khaki shorts, and flip-flops. I don't understand why we pay this man to fix me. He seems to need a bit of fixing himself.
"What was the breakdown over?" My mother, her face pinched and hair back in a messy bun, licks her lips and hums.
"Uhm, well at school they were having an assembly and the noise and lights were uhm, too overwhelming." Ham nods once again, and looks at me.,
"You break anything this time, bud?" I clench my teeth together and nod my head. I punched a teacher and shoved Missy Windberg, a tiny girl who plays clarinet in the school band with me. I apologized to Missy afterwards. She said it was alright. Ham keeps writing, and the him and my mother begin to talk. That's when I disappear.
I should probably explain myself a bit. My name is Joshua Jameson Kingsberg. I am sixteen years old, a Junior at St. Peterson High School. I have black hair cut Military-style and blue eyes that my mother says could pierce the soul of any sane human being. I don't really understand what she means like that, because my eyes don't posess lasers or anything. But I don't know. My mother can be weird sometimes. I weigh 158 pounds and am six feet tall exactly. My pediatritian says I'm underweight, but I can't help it because I'm a very picky eater. My favorite thing to do is draw. I'm very good at it, too. I sometimes draw people, portraits, and I sometimes draw shadows or cartoons or trees. I play the clarinet in my school's Jazz, Concert, and Marching band. I'm first chair clarinet, which means I'm the best. I have all A's in all of my classes, except for Spanish, because I can't grasp other languages (they spent so long teaching me this one, and now they want me to learn another?!) and I'm one of the smartest kids in my grade. This isn't vain, I know, because it's true. I have one brother named Kaleb and one sister named Hannah. Kaleb is fourteen and is a Freshman at St. Peterson High School, and he never talks to me when I walk by, even if I say hello. Kaleb is more muscular than me, but he's smaller. He keeps his shaggy hair ascew on his head, hardly even brushing it in the morning. We have the same blue eyes (which we get from our father), which is the only way I know we're brothers. Everything else about him is completely different. Kaleb is athletic--he plays soccer and baseball--and not nearly as smart as me, though he gets better grades in his foreign language class, Mandarin Chinese. Kaleb has many friends, while I have none. Kaleb also has no artistic ability to speak of. Hannah, my sister, is seven years old. She has shiny, long blonde hair (from my mother) and blue eyes matching mine, my brother's, and my father's. Hannah is constantly smiling and giggling, hopping around and making people laugh. Hannah is the glue of our family, keeping everyone together at the hardest times. Me and Hannah can be very close at times, but sometimes I try to stay away from her, because i don't want to hurt her like I hurt everyone else. My mother and father are named Kate and Michael. Kate, my mother, is somewhat like Hannah, with the long blonde hair, making jokes and normally a happy person, although lately she seems tired. She's kind and never yells, even though I know she sometimes wants to. I have seen her cry three times, once when my grandfather died, once when I was being diagnosed, and once when Kaleb told her he hated her. Kaleb was grounded for three weeks, compliments of my father. Michael is shorter than me, and muscular like Kaleb. His hair is short and black, but starting to grey in the front. He's handsome, my father, with deep laugh lines at the corners of his eyes. My father is always kind to me, even though I know he likes Kaleb better. Overall, my family is bearable. And I do love them, no matter what the doctors say. Speaking of the doctors. I should really be getting to the point. I have Autism. Or so they say. Bright lights make my skin itch, loud sounds make me scream, and social interaction makes me sweat. But I think I'm more than Autistic. My mind is different, and not in an a way that can be explained by a diagnosis. I think things that I can't explain. When you have a mind like mine, you can't explain.
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