A week ago I was still flying high from my trip to Wrexham and meeting other autistic people.
As I always do when I'm in certain moods, I find it very difficult to imagine that I will ever feel different than I do in that moment. A bit like dieting, being in the zone and believing you are impervious to the siren call of chocolate and cake, yet all of a sudden, oops, you're eating chocolate with no idea how you got to that point.
Last week's euphoria is a hazy but pleasant memory. This week I am back to reality; home life, family shit going on to stress and worry about, usual constant questioning myself over everything I've said or written, or might say or write at some point, avoiding social media but not quite well enough to protect myself from my own stupidity at times like this, sky high anxiety (which is pretty bloody annoying now!) and generally feeling very isolated and low.
This is part of the reality of autism. It's not glamorous, it's not nice, but this is the stuff that needs to be dealt with on a daily basis. Having spoken to PDA boy quite openly about this, he confirms that he feels the same, but better since being out of school, although there is still a roller coaster of emotions going on.
Some strategies are useful, for PDA boy things like chopping wood and scootering can level out his mood somewhat, for me, silence really is golden, especially in an empty, tidy house and my iPad fully charged (or at least above 80% charged so I don't get twitchy about it running out of battery).
I need to remind myself of some things at times like this:
Don't talk unless you've fully thought it through.
Don't write anything unless you've fully thought it through.
In fact, scratch both of those, at times like this it's safer to say nothing and write nothing.
Just drag yourself through it, day by day.
Know that things will improve, they always do.
I have more challenges coming up in the next month which are keeping me awake at night and keeping my anxiety levels topped up, so I will be laying low for a while and trying to keep on top of the essential day to day stuff.
Autism has its down sides, but hopefully as we learn to find ways to help ourselves, these times will be fewer, or at least more manageable, and will be balanced out with easier and more contented times.