existing (tactically) audio transcript – Dillon

Yeah, so I’m I’m 27 at this point in my life, and from zero to 18, I feel like I was very stereotypical, very typical, like male child. And that learning came easy. There wasn’t any struggles, or whatnot. And then everything switched at age 18, when I was driving a car, and I got T-boned by a train. And so after that accident, it was definitely a life changing accident in many ways. But the biggest way was that I acquired a brain injury. And that, that really changed my perspective, the way I think, the way I experienced the world around me, and I had to adapt pretty fast.

On average, now, it’s about once a week that I get lost. And it’s 100% due to being in that overwhelming triggered [place]. And there’s so many different contexts. But what happened actually yesterday was that I was walking. It’s really different between locations. Because where I grew up and was living until like, six months ago, you had to travel everywhere by car. So for me to feel safe in public, I had to have my vehicle. And so when I was out of my vehicle, and I got overwhelmed, what usually would happen is that I couldn’t find my vehicle. I didn’t know where I was, and whatnot. And that was distressing, not knowing where you’re-, being alone, and not knowing where the one thing that can make you leave this space is like, I remember sometimes my friends at the university, I would be for 45 minutes, wandering, wandering, wandering around the parking lot looking for my vehicle. And I’m not even in the right parking lot. And they and they were like you were like, in a daze. And it was like, because I was I wasn’t able to think or perceive anything. But now being in Montreal and you, like I don’t have a vehicle here, and it’s all about walking and navigating. Yesterday, I got lost, and I was so disoriented and overwhelmed and there was people in public shouting, and I just wanted to get away. And that’s how I got initially lost and my phone turned off. So couldn’t call anyone to like calm down or even ask Siri for directions, like so that she could be my brain. So I ended up walking for 45 minutes. It was cold, and I just walked straight. And I didn’t turn. And that could have been really dangerous. But I luckily found it. Like I finally after the 45 minutes, I started coming back into my body into my brain. And I noticed a sign and I was like, You know what? That makes sense. If I turn right, let’s see that. And I actually found like a metro. But if I would have kept walking straight, I don’t know where it would have ended up. And when I tell people that they’re like, Well, why, like, how did that happen? I’m like, You don’t understand the over-stimulation and what that does to your body.

I created an art piece to try and show someone who hasn’t had this experience, like a small window into my daily life. And they were like, Well, I forget, like two or three names like a day like, it’s fine. And I wrote down every time that I forgot someone’s name, but I wrote my relationship to them, and the time and the date. And by the end of it after 30 days, I had like 700 and some pieces of paper of how many names that I forgot. And when you think of that, like routine, and how many people you actually see during the day, and how some routines you actually you see the same like 15 people or 10 people. And if you’re consistently forgetting their those names, like that’s distressing. And so when I showed this art piece they were like, Wow, like I never realized how bad it was. And I was like, Well, it’s because you minimized it. You didn’t give me any space or even were open enough to think that my experience could be different than yours.

Transcription by Otter.ai