Welcoming Accessibility

This! This would make it so much easier to go out into the world…

Autism and Expectations

I am aware of my autism. Sounds are grating, they twang through my ears like over-extended elastic bands, and I wait for them to snap and hit me.

I have things to plan, and I am putting off planning them so that I don’t miss out on what is actually happening now. I don’t want to spend my time in a continuous cycle of minute detail, data analysis, and variable controlling, instead of living.

People are aware of my autism, I have had two such examples of adjustments given to me in the past week. Both were thorough and thoughtful and considered, one was unsought.

Can you guess which weighed less heavily upon me? There is something about listing your deficits to strangers, that is unsurprisingly horrible.

I hate having to say that I find things hard, I hate having to point out what I need to make things easier…

View original post 784 more words

‘Just keep away from them’ – Saying ‘NO’ to victim-blaming

YennPurkis

I give a lot of presentations about autism and resilience. Right after the slide about what resilience is, I always add one about what resilience is NOT. There is a reason for this. One of the first presentations I gave about autism and resilience was at a large conference in Queensland a few years ago. Many of the attendees were parents of autistic kids. My resilience talk was in the big theatre and I was on quite a high stage. The whole way through my talk I noticed a woman in the second row on my right. I could tell she wanted to ask a question. I expected her to interject – she clearly had something important to say. As soon as I finished speaking and it was time for questions her hand went straight up. I gestured to her to speak and told me she had enjoyed my presentation…

View original post 862 more words

Tree down Art up

The decorations came down today. They went up early due to a visit from the grandchildren very early in December. Kind of sad to take them down but some normalcy is needed. The loom is now back in its normal spot rather than hiding behind the sofa.

So the art work is back on the wall where it lives happily until the Christmas tree 🎄comes out again.

20180103_160948

This is graphite and white acrylic on paper. Drawn/painted by me c. 2011. It was a complete break from what I had been doing and came about through working through angst that had started as anxiety because of what I had drawn underneath it.

Ok, so I guess you want to know more now I wrote that!

I had drawn a tree, a Moreton Bay Fig. This particular tree is growing in the Auckland Domain. It’s been there since I was a child. Move on a few years to when I was a young mum to my daughter, then five, and my son, aged two. Friends had collected us and taken us to the Domain. I had just left my first husband and was living in a women’s refuge with my children. My friends kept asking me questions and I ended up having a very public, very loud meltdown. It was horrendous. It was school holidays or a weekend because there were many families there sitting having picnics on the grass. I remember the stares. I was extremely distraught.

And my children witnessed it.

I love trees, especially Moreton Bay Figs so I started to draw one but I was overtaken by anxiety due to aforementioned reason. I threw paint at it, drew into it and became happy with my creation. Happy enough that I can live with it on my wall and don’t think about its past until, like now, I started to write the bit under the image above. (The trees in the image above are no particular species.)

I had no plans to tell you that. It just suddenly came up.

I use to feel embarrassed, humiliated, shameful… etc but I don’t now. I now know I’m autistic and I was pushed much too far at a very stressful and vulnerable point in my life.

Anyway, I’m fine now 🌹🌻🌼❤

Standing outside

It was the village carol service tonight. I find this event very difficult to deal with each year as I cannot tolerate the lights and noise in the church anymore. So I went over and peered through the windows hoping I wouldn’t be seen. It was rather strange behaviour!

So I feel sad.

I took some photos with my phone as the church looks very beautiful. The image quality is poor but I think it gives something worth sharing.

wp_20171221_19_58_17_pro174749297.jpg

wp_20171221_19_54_09_pro181904524.jpg

wp_20171221_19_53_27_pro1916564432.jpg

wp_20171221_19_52_17_pro518507750.jpg

wp_20171221_20_04_58_pro1341326020.jpg

wp_20171221_19_57_07_pro2730558.jpg

A confession, a book and a doll

I have a thing about dolls. I still have many of the dolls from my sixties childhood. They are hidden away. I’ve kind of felt ashamed about my doll love affair. It’s childish. I thought people would think me childish. Yes I am childish in many ways, after all, being child-like is an autistic trait. But. The new, no, …the real me… is gradually appearing and taking over and conquering the fears of the person I thought I was.

So, I’m coming out. And, my dolls should come out of the closet too.

I need to find a glass fronted antique style cabinet to display them. This is important as our home has two fires and sooty dust is a fact of life.

A year ago, before my shoulder became fully frozen I was completing a lot of jigsaw puzzles and this was one of them…

20171217_094731

This jigsaw helped me re-identify with my authentic doll loving self. As a child my mum encouraged me to play with my dolls. I didn’t know how. But i did love to look at them. I liked collecting them. (During my teenage years I found all my dolls under the house and in the refuse bin. They were rescued and hidden away!)

Wind forward a year later too late November 2017 when I bought this book…

20171217_092830

And inside I found the pattern for this doll that I completed last week…

20171217_092926

I made her with my handspun yarn and she’s stuffed with fleece, yarn ends and a bit of poly fill.

My dolls are still in the closet. It’s time to get them out.

Performing Pain: Autism

I always thought I had a low pain threshold until I had an accident just over a year ago when the nurse in A&E told me I had a high pain threshold! Anyhow, the shock of hurting myself causes me to become mute until I’m able to pull myself together. The following post explains it so well 🙂

Autism and Expectations

I am not good at communicating my pain. It’s my greatest weakness. I am terrible at asking for help, I am terrible at reaching out to you, and I am worst at this when I’m distracted by physical discomfort.

I have often been told what a “coper” I am. How well I cope with stressful situations, how well I cope with shock and pain. Not because I am coping, but because I communicate these things differently.

What is pain? How do you quantify it? How do you get across just how much or how little you are in?

I am autistic, which means that I have a social communication condition, which means that I do not naturally or intuitively understand or (perhaps more importantly) perform social communication.

Most of the time I can do it all. I have learnt your ways, I may not understand why THIS QUESTION needs THIS…

View original post 624 more words

Close to tears

Yes that was me at lunch time today with Lovely Husband. It was about financial stuff so I’m not going into details. Don’t worry, we are ok.  The finance stuff is about what happens if LH dies first. This is so hard for me to write as it’s a fear that crops up everyday in my mind. And, you know, people, especially Brits, don’t like talking about money.

It’s all come down to what I think must be dyscalculia – something a bit like dyslexia but with numbers instead. I’m not diagnosed but as I’ve always struggled with math and talking about figures creates great anxiety as numbers fly around and don’t settle anywhere, it probably is dyscalculia. It does help if it’s visually represented, but only a little.

I read lots of blogs written by Actually Autistics but money isn’t or doesn’t seem to be discussed. I’m not a materialistic person. As long as I have a bit to spend on creativity and in the giving to others via what I create I’m contented. So this is not about being rich or poor.

As you can probably guess LH deals with everything financial and it’s mostly computer based – another terrifying prospect… things are great as long as it’s all working smoothly. Not all Aspie’s/Autie’s are computer geniuses.

So if LH dies first the only money immediately accessible will be that in a physical ‘go to the bank’ bank account. The rest, pensions and stuff is invisible to me. The computer, the temperamental computer, and people the other side of that cloud is like a terrifying forcefield that I can’t ever penetrate. And that’s aside from the grief – ‘that’ which cannot be thought about.

Do you know, I think it’s the thing at the top of the pile that makes me feel both extremely vulnerable and disabled. LH is trying to simplify things but that takes so much time and what if the most horrendous thing was to happen tomorrow. I shall have to depend on family to sort it out for me. The thought of that makes me feel so inadequate and embarrassed.

So maybe that’s enough for the moment. Maybe voicing this much might help. Maybe other autistics reading this struggle too? It would be of some help to know I am not alone.

 

Ground Yourself when Anxiety Hits

I’m reblogging this for future reference plus I think many of you may appreciate this too. I have found grounding very helpful in the past but not something I’ve thought to do lately.

Discovering Your Happiness

We all know how terrible anxiety can feel. From the nauseous feeling before you give a presentation, to the panicky sensation when you have to try something new, to the overwhelming anxiety that incapacitates you.

Grounding is a simple but effective therapeutic technique that can help you when strong anxiety hits. You can use grounding when you feel like the anxiety is taking over, when you feel numb, like you are in a dream, lost in past events, or having an out-of-body or out-of-reality experience.

Grounding helps to bring a person back to the here and now, to realise that they are safe and in control of their reality and emotions. It helps a person to refocus and find calmness and strength in the present moment when they are highly anxious and emotional.

There are many different grounding techniques for anxiety and the following 5 ways are some of my…

View original post 373 more words

Social Anxiety: “Off the Beaten Track” – Interview with Vincent Mars

This is wonderful as it offers an alternative. I’ve always been in the rigid thought patterns of needing to change my character. Basically I fight who I really am…

repsychl

“Social anxiety isn’t necessarily an illness, but a peculiar character type.”

Vincent pic

Vincent Mars is a writer from Romania. In his articles, ‘Social Anxiety and What (Not) to Do About It’ and ‘The Benefits of Being an Introvert’, Vincent writes of his past experiences: how he hid from social anxiety, and the change in perception that instead allowed him to view it as a personal strength. This refreshing perspective interested me to know more, including how he came to that realisation, and any advice he would give to others who are experiencing the same.

This interview is conducted as part of a series of articles aiming to enlighten stories as well as strategies related to mental health.

How do you feel about the diagnosis or term ‘social anxiety’?

Social anxiety isn’t necessarily an illness, but a peculiar character type. When it’s so bad that it affects your relationship with other…

View original post 1,044 more words