Healthy Lifestyle, Independence

Not all Autistics are Built the Same

One fierce autism advocate online out east has coined the phrase “if you met one person with autism, you’ve done just that, met one person with autism.” Nothing could be further from the truth as far as it comes to the makeup of our body sizes and eating habits. I will admit that I am not the typical looking autistic, and I feel offended in a way that the media portrays the body types in shows like Atypical or the Good Doctor. Not that is the sole reason for me not watching the shows, but their body type is the stereotypical type that many in the general populace think of when they hear of an autistic person or similar stigmatizing name.

What the general populace also makes an assumption is that autistics are picky eaters That statement is true in childhood. I can remember growing up going anywhere as a child and having a pick at the menu. Many times it was a cheese related food simply because I couldn’t get enough of it. That was then and this is now. Almost 30 years later those obsessions still hinder back but have become more eminent. I hit pubescence, I have been on too appetite causing medicines for just over 20 years. In essence I am over 300 pounds and growing. With COVID-19 in our lives, among personal earlier circumstances, it has become harder to step away from the screen and move about. Nonetheless, I have no problem journaling my food because I like to also track my medicine that I medicate with since my last relapse almost two weeks ago when I was a total monster.

It is a God-Given miracle that in my 35 years of living and my almost half decade without dental care that my teeth haven’t presented me with any issues as a result of my excess soda drinking. I guess not eating really any other sweetened items other than that (other than the occasional ice cream, which I know is a weakness.) has been the saving grace in that arena and for the most part other than a few minor health issues other than my weight, I manage to do well.

However, it’s slowly becoming a problem, the weight, that is.

Since COVID-19 I have had several bouts of inactivity due to being in front of a computer or phone most of my work time, however in those occasions, a sweet drink, usually tea would occupy the occasion at the moment in time. In any given week, I would purchase and consume 3 gallons of sweet tea, let alone any sodas or any other sugary drinks. In the end, it all catches up to you as the experts suggest.

And it did and it hit hard, like one of those penthouse to the outhouse moments.

Two weeks ago, I had lost six pounds in a weigh in at the Monday night support group I belong to. After having a stressful week, extremely poor food choices throughout the week, including nearly to pizzas and at least 3 gallons of sweet tea, I knew it would catch up to me. By the time the next weigh in rolled around, I had gained 11 and a half pounds.

I called myself a pig and a careless soul. I was very ashamed of myself. Low and behold, my fellow members came to the rescue supporting me to do better and to get a better grasp on things. We will weigh in the following Monday, but are unsure of the future, because of COVID-19.

It is getting better though within the past two days, only one big drink today, and its diet and no more pop or tea today. Why? Because there’s none in the house! My mother has increasingly become worried about my health and of my size of the simple fact that I might die.

That could very well be the case as we were just watching TLC and a episode of My 600-pound life where a close to 900 pound man was featured and his struggles. He was on borrowed time and only 32 years old, but he tried as much as he could no matter how painful it was. But he also made bad food choices and was really centered around food.

In reality, I like food and the way it tastes, although I don’t really take time to taste it. I also don’t do what is needed to be done in order to help my health my eating less and doing more, the pillars of any method of losing weight. Each week, my day program has a wellness Wednesday segment that I usually lead on our virtual platform, The past two weeks we have been talking about the mental and physical affects on sugar and mental this week, we talked about calories, and planned for next week is Weight and BMI. My central thought is this, how when they ask me questions, can I be honest looking when I myself am way morbidly obese. How can I be respected to the fact that I preach health, yet all I do is the opposite. It makes me look like a fool and like I do as I say and not as I do.

I know I need to do it and not having a complete meltdown about making a trip to the store to get some nourishment was the first step, and it will be likely that because I am working virtually tomorrow, that I will go without and that will be OK, because I do need to replace the tea and soda drinking for a more healthier drink like water. I have to do it, because I fear that I won’t be able to go to the day program, work or the store. It’s hard now in the larger stores, I don’t like it since they removed the benches. I know its no ones fault just these draconian mandates to prevent COVID-19 from spreading.

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