I am Katja. I’m 18 years old and I live with my parents, my sister and two cats. I love nature very much, so you can often find me outdoors.
I like to draw, listen to music and watch movies. I'm a big fan of the bands One Direction and 5 Seconds of Summer and the musicians Ed Sheeran and Yungblud. I’m also a fan of the Harry Potter movies and the Marvel movies. I really enjoy photography as well. I especially enjoy photographing birds. I will gladly take time to do this.
Before I was diagnosed, I was already noticing that I was different from other children my age. Where other children would meet up on the weekends, I stayed home to recover from the busy week I'd had. I was diagnosed with autism a few years ago. I could finally understand why I needed that rest. I now have learned to live with it and my environment adapts to it.
I am proud of what I have achieved in my life so far. I now study Applied Biology (MBO level 4), I have a side job at an awesome zoo (Almere Jungle) and I volunteer at Staatsbosbeheer [National Forest Management] and the Nederlandse Vereniging voor Autisme[Dutch Autism Association].
My tip for people with autism: Stay your true self. Don't change yourself because other people think certain things about you. I don't see my autism as something negative. You are who you are, it’s just that you may need more explanation about different things.