accommodating Self

 

Yesterday afternoon, a friend took me to a little nooky cafe, tucked inside an industrial estate. A former hardware shop, the entrance decorated with eclectic vintage clutter served as a thematic introduction to the atmosphere within. As soon as we pushed open the creaky door, I felt a draft of musty, humid, cool air blow directly into my face, then wrap around me like a nebulous mouldy snake. My skin tingled, as my olfactory senses picked up the various miasmic odours emanating from each visually charming piece of history on display.

The waiter ushered us towards the back. Slipping within a split second into a bubble of wordlessness, I followed obediently, semi-somnambulant, my sensory system already engaged in a (routine) contrapuntal wrestling match with the onslaught of smells, sights, and sounds. As we were about to sit down at the allocated table, speech suddenly returned, and words fell out of my mouth like marbles, tumbling down and bouncing sharply against the concrete floor.

“I don’t want to sit here, it smells funny. I don’t like the smell here.”

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flying wheelbarrow

Noshment. Food. Eats. Chronicles in multi sensorial paintings reflecting the intrepid travels of the Bunny.

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Fried vermicelli. Soya sauce. Grease. A few sprinkles of spring onion and crispy garlic. Nothing more. Probably the worst dinner I’ve ever had at the Singapore Changi Airport. Necessity prodded the weary of body, with painful and inflamed metatarsals, hobbling like a stubbed-web penguin across the buzzing landscape of the airport. Terminal 1 is the oldest terminal, and I could see there were ongoing upgrading works everywhere. In true Singapore-glitzy manner, even the boards blocking off the renovations were painted over with murals and slogans in a somewhat supercilious-yet-clumsy way. Welcome to Singapore. Or goodbye, safe travels! In my case, Bunny needed to make this all-important working trip back to Sydney, come rain, hail, shine or arthritic inflammation. Continue reading

panacea

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sweet balm…

Sensory overload. What is it really like? Difficult to pin down, common to most autistics, yet different in each individual and varying from one circumstance to another. No, it’s not just “all in the imagination” and no, we are not deliberately playing some dramatic role for whatever purported attention-seeking accusation.

Right. So, here. Today’s episode.

Heat. Humidity. Crowds. Smells. Noise. Lights. Over-exposure.

11.45am – 1pm. Just a wee bit over an hour.

Nausea. Vertigo. Uhoh… think I am going to throw up – search frantically for a plastic bag. OK, this is going to be awkward, standing at the bus stop. Should I give up and go sit down somewhere? Bus is arriving in 2 minutes. Determination and stubborn grit – just get home, Bunny!

I did it!

Safe, tucked into bed with my panacea for all woes – Canine Angel and warm vanilla hound.

Ah, so lucky to have my Lucy Like-a-Charm!

Clemency.

tired sausages

 

Literally. Exhausted. And the pain… but nobody wants to hear about the aches and pains of a middle aged autistic woman. Come to think of it, nobody ever wanted to hear about aches and pains at any stage of life. I know that, because mine began from as far back as I can remember, and probably even further back to pre-memory and pre-verbal stages, judging from reports and anecdotes about my behaviour as an infant. “Psychosomatic!” “Pull up your socks!” (where are my socks, by the way?) “All in your head!” (it’s bursting, just sayin’)… Since the age of five. Amazing stuff, adults tell suffering children, yeah. Continue reading

innocence in dreams

Another nonverbal day. The last few days have been even more of a struggle than usual. Is it even possible, without completely losing the plot? Yes, it seems so. I am still here. Still relatively coherent, very much alive (the pain tells me that, very clearly so), but in a surreal state of high-pitched silently shrieking fugal stretto. At the same time… oh no, there’s that Pina Bausch Le Sacre dance scene again! How do they all coexist? I do not know. They just do. It’s all ‘going on’ in there, a palpable, concretely physical unfolding in the abstract realm of my brain. Yep. Go figure. Continue reading

survival mode

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Moving house is stressful for anyone. For a middle-aged Aspie Bunny with hypersenses and a painful autoimmune condition, it is a nightmare of monumental proportions. In the two and a half years I have been in Sydney, I have moved five times to date. Each time, I felt aged by a few years just from the ordeal itself! Continue reading

rupture

5am, my Angel wakes me with a soft, gentle enquiring noise. A baby whimper. That is my alarm clock. An angel, bringing kisses and cuddles to open up the day.

But Anxiety reached into our idyllic space and battled to engulf me, swallow whole my mind and soul. My angel fought alongside, sensing my fear yet remaining unchanged, her love and trust anchoring me always in the present, wrapping me inside her unflinching fidelity.

Breakfast. I need a hearty breakfast to help me get through the morning. Mashed banana, oatmeal, egg – pancakes! Coconut milk and marmalade topping. Gobbled up in haste, I don’t really remember the taste, except that I don’t like the crumbly texture.

My iCal buzzed a warning. I had remembered the time wrongly. My appointment at the hospital for the test is an hour earlier than I thought. Anxiety mounts. I rush to get ready. I worry about leaving my Angel behind, I worry about bringing her along. What if? What if? Continue reading

coffee and tea

Doggy heatpad wrapped in an old beanie warming and easing the pain in my back. Coffee with milo and marshmallows to keep awake on a drowsy, wet, sensorially depressing day. I do like the taste and texture of melty marshmallows! I am pleased, because I managed to get a bit more work done than yesterday. That makes it a better day. Yes! Also, we were twice lucky today, we escaped both episodes of massive downpours. First in the morning, and then later in the afternoon.

Lucy asked to be taken downstairs an hour ahead of our normal schedule for the afternoon walk. I did think it strange, but she was quite vocal about it, and she is seldom very vocal at all. Continue reading