I'm a college student and in a competitive speaking activity called forensics. I'm writing an informative speech on aphantasia and will travel around the country presenting it at tournaments. I've done a lot of research on it, but for my final point, I'd love to share some stories from people. Specifically, disadvantages you find, advantages you find, and how you've adapted. So, if you'd be willing to share your story with me, and allow me to share your story this season, that would be greatly appreciated.
I've never lost a person close to me since the start of my memory. All of my family and friends are still alive, and so this will be lesser for me than it will be for many others, but grief, or the lack thereof is what I would call the biggest disadvantage. Despite never losing a human, several dogs have passed away, and these were as close to me as my family. One of them was taken from a bad home where she was scared of everything and tried to bite anyone near, but in time I helped cure her psychological scars. Another we had from a puppy and so I was with him for his whole life. Yet another we took from a rescue centre, and he had bad hips, was a bit stupid but me and him connected and I really felt empathised with him. These were just 3 of the closest to me. I had an intimate link with each of them, and obviously I cried when they died. However now I don't feel that. Despite how much I loved them I can't remember their features, how they felt, their body language. I don't know the feel of their fur or the sound of their bark, and worst of all I can't feel the love I once had for them. I feel sad, but only as sad as if I had just heard a dog I've never met had died. All of that time spent, all of the affection shared and I have none of it left, and that hurts. It makes me wonder why I bother making bonds when once they've gone its all just blown away. It makes me wonder if I'm truly a monster to forget all that. And it makes me sorry, that for all the love and attention those dogs showed me, I couldn't hold on to it. And as stated as the start, this is for dogs. Others have lost parents, spouses and children. Even if they hold on to more than me it still is such a loss, and now we know it. When people die, visualisers can hold on to them well in their memory, religious people believe they will see them again, but for an atheist with aphatasia that loss is total.
As for advantages, imagine walking through a doorway, and seeing the most beautiful person you've ever seen for the first time. Now imagine walking out, and walking back in again, and seeing them for the first time all over again. This is what we get in return. There is never a "I'll never get to see this for the first time again" because every time is the first time. There are roads I will travel along for the hundredth time, and still have my breath taken by the view. There are people I see whom blow me away despite having seen them almost every day for years. I can watch cinematic films again and again on repeat, and while the story line may bore me the pictures never will. And its more than just the visual with me, sound, scent, taste and touch all gt reset the very second they stop, so a good meal gives you the first bite every bite, an emotional song has that same impact on you each time you hear it.
This to me is the greatest high and low point of it. I have no senses in the past, and I know that in the future the ones I have currently will be gone, but in the present, everything is so vivid, so new that it is all amplified, and when I get down it hurts so much more, however when I'm up, I feel that I get to constantly experience the wonder of this existence, with no lessening, nothing being taken for granted, while others are limited to their brief glimpse before their mind stores it away and that initial awe is lost.
I don't know what you wanted on this thread. Maybe you just wanted facts and figures, maybe you wanted more specific anecdotes, but I feel that there are plenty of these around this forum. As such I tried to give you something new, and sorry if it isn't wanted.
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