Occupation: Girl

Please close the door and switch on the fun without fail.

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msauvage purple
As I just said on Twitter, I keep forgetting that chronic health issues are chronic and that I can't just wait them out. "Oh, I feel like shit today, I'll post/work/exercise once the aches and/or pains and/or anxieties have let up." And then they just... don't, and another four weeks have slipped by. In fact, I'm typing this straight into the "new post" field on my phone because if I try to ~draft~ something, I won't finish it. I wanted to post something, several somethings, more substantial about the last few months, but: ow.

At this point, the best and easiest thing I can think of to do for myself is drink a shit ton of water, healthwise, and try to catch up on some reading, considering that I am specifically in physical pain right now. I feel like there is probably always something you can do for yourself, even if that something is "breathe deep and drink a water."

I have a yearly PCOS checkup scheduled for September, which I think is also when I have my next quarterly med check (for bipolar II, if you do not have my health conditions memorized, she said dryly). You know, I'll go ahead and say--it's a long long story that I don't really know how to start or finish, and so maybe I'm finding reasons to put off more in-depth posts on (subconscious) purpose, but: it seems, based on some preliminary discussion, that I may be on the autism spectrum. I have a referral to a clinical specialist, but I don't think I can afford another doctor's visit right now, or maybe even for 2-3 months.

So it's not an ironclad clinical diagnosis. But it would explain A LOT about my painfully lonely and anxious childhood, why I have panic attacks while trying to drive, problems I have both starting and/or finishing things, and those times when I'm just like "that's it, I'm done, I have lost my will to function, I will be sitting in this corner of the convention hall if you need me." And I know some of these things may be true of many people. But in the preliminary research I started doing, a revelatory preponderance of them turned out to be true of me.

And that's the kind of thing I wanted to post about in depth. Things like how autism can present very differently in girls, how many women aren't diagnosed until adulthood, how (contrary to a lot of stereotypes) empathy overload and high verbal skills can be involved, mirror neurons, how bipolar disorder often overlaps with or is mistaken for autism, intense world theory, executive dysfunction, sensory overload, how Hans Asperger only studied boys, how I'm not sure if Asperger's syndrome is still clinically a thing or if it even reflects what's going on with me but who am I to say that, how I'm not entirely sure if "high-functioning end of the spectrum" is a thing or if that terminology upsets people, how I might be blundering into an existing community, and not knowing the right words and being afraid I don't belong because I don't KNOW for sure, but how it's already helped me a lot to reconsider how I think and feel and function. It has, perhaps contrary to expectation, been a largely positive experience.

Anyway. I think I am stealing my own thunder here because trying to write about Autism, Maybe has been turning into Let Me Slideshow You My Brain. Like, we could be here a while. So. Voilà.

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My daughter is on the spectrum - it's hard, especially for high functioning/Aspies. People don't get that you have a "thing", because you look "normal" -whatever that means.(daughter is 19, but has a maturity level of 8-going-on-40. She NEEDS to carry a plush toy around with her to cope with society.....try explaining that to outsiders!)

I am not a doctor, but you might see if your doc will prescribe one of the many ADHD meds (if you think it might help). Concerts was a godsend to us when she was in public school! (I pulled her out and homeschooled high school, because that was best for her. Mean girls.......she deserved better.)

Good luck - it's tough to come to grips with this. Feel free to PM me if you want - I might be able to point you to help (Aspies can qualify for disability, but it's not an easy process, for example.)

I know that at one point I was diagnosed with chronic depression and ADHD; I can't remember if the ADHD is still accurate or if it was wholly superseded by the diagnosis of bipolar II, which has some overlapping elements. Anyway, I'm on a pretty carefully balanced cocktail of meds at this point going on several years now; I have some issues concentrating, but that's generally during stress or hypomanic periods. I did read that sometimes bipolar disorder is mistaken for autism, but it can also just overlap with it; I tend to think I'm genuinely also bipolar because I have a discernable mood cycle and meds have actually made a huge positive difference.

I may take you up on that, though--I'm assuming I would need a more formal clinical diagnosis for disability, but once I see the specialist, you may be hearing from me.

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