anxiety at the BIG Anxiety

Big anxiety at The BIG Anxiety Festival!

Some of this narrative was introduced in my previous post, about Food Markers, but this ramble here is a kind of variation on the theme, from a different angle.

This 2017 working trip has been fraught with dramatic ups and downs, and here’s my as-brief-as-possible review of the Grand Experience, months afterwards. Beware, ye grammar-sticklers, I do move rapidly between tenses, because I am unfolding the unfolding as I am experiencing it, in the now, in the then, and in the next. And that, too, is my Autistic Bunny Authentic Experience-ing. Continue reading

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food markers

Food can be multi sensorial markers for a journey, tangible physical tabs that help one chronicle the meandering and navigating along the way. Here are my food markers for this trip, a somewhat odd blend of agony and joy, despair and exhilaration all rolled into one jumbled mass.

After arriving at my place of abode, already down with some kind of nasty infection, feverish and in a brain fog, I set about trying to find some nourishment for my weary body. I didn’t manage to get far, due to the sorry state I was in, and settled for a hot dog and an orange juice from the pie and hot dog stand across the road, by the wharf. A sunny day, there were the usual seagulls and pigeons stalking all and any humans sitting at the benches eating. One man brought his little French Bulldog for some sunshine. It was difficult chewing down on the hotdog, my jaw slightly swollen and stiff, but I was quite determined to achieve the feat. The orange juice tasted like soap and plastic though, pretty vile, hence that was abandoned after a few swigs. I so hate to waste. Continue reading

coming home

Dear Lucy,

Mumma’s coming home.

I know you’ve missed me. I missed you terribly too.

I am so sorry, my dearest love.

I will work ever harder, I promise, to provide a better life for you and me.

Thank you for your unquestioning patience, quiet endurance, and silent forbearance. I am devastated at having caused you pain.

I am coming home. In just a few hours, I will be with you again.

All my love and gratitude,

Mum Continue reading

clement space in the city

IMG_6234-sofa-bed

I spent the last few nights and days in this sofa, positioned right next to the loo. For safety, because I nearly fell down the winding stairs connecting to the loft bed. And for convenience, in case I had to throw up. A good thing I am short, but still, I have not laid down properly in a bed, stretched out, for this entire time. Continue reading

amplified senses

soup

What happens when an autistic person with hyper senses becomes unwell / sick? Do those hyper sensory antennae suddenly shrink to ‘normal’? Nope. They are amplified still, as ever, if not even more so. The pain is compounded, and searing terror all the more gripping.

Staring into my delicious bowl of hot potato and leek soup this morning at the Arthouse Kitchen, after an entire night spent retching into the loo, I felt a sense of relief – just simply because I was no longer trapped inside the swirling sphere of excruciating agony. Last night, it was as if time had snapped its back and was lying on the ground in a crumpled heap, sneering at me each time I convulsed, perspiring profusely like a tap at full blast. Not a pretty sight. Not one I’m happy to allow any to witness, so another episode came and went, with only the cosmos as voyeur, and my paltry words to record. I don’t want or need anyone to hold my hand during the ordeal, no thank you, it adds to the distress, really. Yet, being all alone in the cold, stark artist’s studio while teetering on the brink of physical and mental breakdown, was admittedly most frightening.

I couldn’t swallow more than 6 spoons of the goop, no matter how tasty. The throat is inflamed from all the coughing and sputtering. Sorry, Massimo. Please don’t take it as an insult to your culinary offering.

It was a comfort to sit in an old favourite and familiar space. Though with a sad twitching tingling feeling, because that was one of ‘our’ places to be – Lucy and me.

Takeaway: Autistic hyper senses = amplified horror and pain when unwell. Spare a thought for us, we’re not being dramatic. In fact, we prefer to hide inside our excruciating terror. But being nearby and knowing that you are somewhere does help a bit, if only to call an ambulance if needed.

big stars

IMG_1149robin@capella

60th!

The family decided to celebrate my brother-in-law’s birthday in a big way: surviving 60 years on earth is a milestone to the Chinese. So, away we trundled, pouring into a super-starred resort.

I have observed on many an occasion, that swanky establishments seldom actually take into consideration persons with disabilities, and this was to be an interested and mixed experience for one and all. At over a thousand dollars per night, our two-night booking didn’t exactly come cheap. Continue reading

familiar

Finding comfort in familiarity. One of my two favourite spots in Paddo, the Arthouse Kitchen. This time, though, Lucy is not with me. I miss her terribly. That space she occupies – physical, mental, sensorial – is now a softly whirring void. I gravitate towards our usual table at the far corner. It is a cosy place, just right for one, and a comfortable area on the floor for Lucy on her fluffy rug. Continue reading

pockets of clemency

Sunday brunch with Rick at “dog cafe”. A pocket of clement space. Empathic resonance. Deep laughter. Ranting at cosmic tragi-comedy. Summoning Artaud and Wagner. Light in darkness. Cosy cocoon inside Paddington.

Good to be back. But… I miss Lucy. Especially here, in our beloved Paddo.

infrared

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Lucy in Infrared.

My love. In infrared.

Being away from her is never easy. We’ve had a tumultuous 2016. Since moving to home country, Lucy and I have enjoyed a sense of stability we did not have before, that of being within a family. It is a small family, just my baby sister, her hubby, their two furry boys Bizcuit and Tiny, and our mother. Now, there’s Lucy and me.

I no longer need to panic and worry about who will care for Lucy when I need to make trips away, or when I am unwell and cannot attend to her personally. Continue reading

desolate

I went there today. It was one of our favourite places, Lucy’s and mine. I sat at our regular spot. Smiling faces and hearty greetings from everyone. It was good to be back. The humans, the smells, the sounds, the colours and images, the textures, they are comforting in their familiarity. Yet, there was a void, a resonating desolation. There, in that space, that little nooky corner by my feet, Lucy was not. Instead, a walking cane, to help my unsteady hobbling, ungainly swelling of ankle and metatarsal joints. Bunny keeps on keeping on, while Lucy awaits patiently in her new faraway abode. Here, back in our former home, our old neighbourhood, the emptiness reverberates gentle memories of our adventures. Bunny and Lucy.