Prepare to enter the wild and wooly world of an adult with Aspergers Syndrome, a form of autism characterized by intellignce, quirks, social difficulties and downright strange and oddish behaviours.

People with Aspergers generally are high functioning in everyday life but have great difficulty connecting with others due to the inability to read faces, body language and subtle verbal clues. They also tend to take words literally and have a hard time multi-tasking.

Oversensitivity to touch (clothing has to be soft and often the tags removed), light (do not leave home without the sunglasses), sound (loud noises and noisey places are avoided), taste (many Aspies have quite a limited diet and are frequently very picky eaters) and smells makes the everyday existence more of a challenge.

Fasten your seatbelts and come on in...
To find out more about what Aspergers is..please check out my earliest blog entries

Friday, March 30, 2012

Lichen Sclerosis

If lichen sclerosis was a disease that caused a mans penis to shrink, rare or not, there would be massive funding and teams of doctors working to find a cure. But because it affects women, there is no funding, studies or research.
Lichen sclerosis has no cure and no known cause. It is a helpless, frustrating, cruel and painful disease. Start talking about it.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Aspergers and Super Powers

It really isn't far fetched in the least, to consider the abilities of Aspergians to be super. Think about it. I have superb hearing due to my oversensitivity, excess neurons, and can hear a pencil drop from, not just across the room, but from another room in my house. I have detected engine noises that have thoroughly surprised my auto mechanic because most NTs do not notice such subtle change in engine sound and vibration.

One of the reasons that I am an excellent massage therapist, is that I hear high pitched sound when I come to an area of the body that is injured. I detect old and new injuries alike. I can tell when appliances are "acting up", need repair or are on the verge of calling it quits, all with hearing alone.
Until I needed glasses for reading, I had exemplary eyesight, both direct and peripheral, detecting subtle movement even out of the corner of my eye. I have a photographic memory which gives me the super ability to recall rooms and places, in great detail, years later. I need only read a page of a book once and I immediately absorb the information...if it is a subject I am interested in. My focus is very narrow and I can easily observe the minute path of an ant that crosses my path as well as veering the car, ever so slightly, as to avoid running over wooly bear caterpillars meandering through the middle of the road.

As an artist, I have the ability to look at a color, even a complex one with many different shades, and replicate it. It's as if I see and my brain can pull apart and separate out each individual color. I can look at a small child under five and know exactly what age the little person is in months. This one isn't 100%, but I am sure I average 75% or more.
My touch receptors are always in high gear. I can pick up a piece of clothing at a second-hand store and feel the....characteristics and age of the previous owner. I don't look at is as psychic mumbo-jumbo, rather I simply have double the usual sensory interceptors and feel much, much more than most.
On the down side, I get a little insect bite and my whole body overreacts. A pinprick sometimes feels like a small stab wound. Back to the positives, hugs from loved ones are one of the greatest gifts as I feel them throughout my entire body, almost to my core. Another psychic sensation of premeditation would be when I come down with a cold or flu, I feel those little, minute physical changes hours or days before I even look sick.

My overly zealous sense of smell allows me to smell the coming of a rainstorm and tell exactly what is cooking at the neighbors house, if their window is open. Standing in a crowd, it's easy to figure out who is wearing the perfume, baby powder and heavy sweat. Figuring out when the garbage needs to be taken out, when the bird cage needs cleaning or if something has "died" and gone bad in the refrigerator needn't be done by sight alone.
Ahh, the smell of Spring, Summer , all the seasons herald the changing of the seasons with ease. I can walk through the neighborhood and pick out individual flower species. Lilac, alyssum, lily and rose all beckon me with their sweetest of scents.
Looking at the relatively average abilities of someone with Aspergers, one can...most easily say, Aspies have Super Powers!

Friday, March 16, 2012

We Look So Normal...disbelief

There are pluses and minuses to being an Aspie. One positive, we can pass for NT. One negative, we can pass for NT. It has been most interesting to observe my two sons and their disabilities. Eldest, my Aspie has had a much rougher, more challenging time than his younger brother. Eldest needed much more attention, understanding and modifications, but, he looked so darn normal. His superior intelligence helped him get the grades but further pushed others expecations higher. One can only see his challenge if they engage him in social interaction or ask him what an emotion is.
Teachers especially, failed to understand and at more than one school, he was relentlessly punished for not being able to speak, for making odd noises, and for being unable to perform like the others students due to his sensory issues.
Younglink, on the other hand, who was born minus one hand, gets most people's to fall all over him offering assistance, help that he sorely does not need or want. Whilst it be true, he does have to tolerate stares, curiosity, questions and the imbeciles, overall, his journey is easily within his reach. He was born equipped with a vibrant, social personality. He disarms all with his charm and tenacity.
As an Aspie mom, with two challenged boys, I have had a most unique perspective. Things are not always as they appear.
A few people, whom I have shared my autism with, have been in utter disbelief. I have gone from a very low functioning person, to the being I am today. I am quite high-functioning and frequently, mostly, offer no physical signs that I am different.
Conversations and small talk flow with some ease these days. I am no longer consumed by overwhelming chaotic emotion. I dress fairly typical and have learned to walk amongst the others, blending in. One way someone would notice my difference is if we were engaged in a long conversation preferably about a passionate, emotional subject. The other avenue of discovery would be to see the real me that I keep hidden. Ask about my social interactions in any given week. The answer would be 3-4 conversations of five minute durations or less. All my favorite activities require solitude or being within my domicile with family.
It is quite a dichotomy. I'm not singled out or made fun of, as long as I keep my mouth shut. People don't stare at me unless my paranoia is flaring. When I bow out of engagements due to stress or shutdown, others may get suspicious of my autism, more likely they'll just figure it's a ruse.
The people I have shared my Aspergers with have been stellar. I need help with small, everyday things like filling out forms, writing checks, dispelling confusion. When I need help, if someone does not already know of my autism, I tell them. The response has been warmer and friendlier than expected. I believe it s human nature to want to help one another.
I hope my writing , this post has helped:)

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Gluten-Free...the results are in... and Soy Allergy

In actuality, I have only been GF free for a couple of months. I thought it had been a year but I am still the dumbest smart person you will ever meet. Up until a couple months ago, I was continuing to take my Benefiber tablets as I have faithfully ingested two or three of them a day for many moons.

The package seriously actual states, "99.8% gluten-free". So I read and comprehended the GF part but completely neglected the number. The first ingrediant listed is, "wheat dextrin". Hello? Yup, sometimes I'm an idiot.

What is so very ironic is that I was taking the fiber supplements for, dare I say, constipation and it was the supplement that was actually causing the problem. Within a few days of stopping the Benefiber I noticed a dramatic change in my...intestional health. Not only that, but the biggest change I have noticed is a striking drop in my anxiety level. I think it's safe to say, that on a scale of 1-10 with 1 denoting complete absence of anxiety, I usually operated at 5-8 for the most part. Now I am living at 1 and I am loving it! In addition, my eye contact has improved, my digestive system is much, much calmer and regular, my physical tics are way, way down and I feel like I "fit" better in my body. Gone is the compulsive, germ-phobic handwashing. I haven't felt a need for more social contact but the interactions I do have are of higher quality with increased alertness and less tension.

In reading a new study, I surmised that I really need to work on going Casien-Free as well. Since I successfully figured out the GF diet, I am well-versed in how to go about the whole intricate process of major dietary change. Gone will be the Activia, Kefir, cheeses and, sadly and with great remorse, Mr.Snickers. Thankfully I have recently discovered Strawberry Jello in the refrigerated section as well as 2, count them 2, different snack bars that are GF and CF. So I am well on my way.

Sure I'll whine and grumble a whole lot more, but I'd rather be healthy than happy. The results of the GF diet have proven to me that a little discomfort is worth it.

The other point that interested me in this article is soy allergies often accompany gluten intolerance. It was only a few months ago that I noticed an immediate allergic reaction to soy. At first I just figured it must have had sulfur or wheat somehow mixed in, but nope, I am quite allergic to soy and not crazy.

Another day, another revelation