Wellness Wednesday: “Hangry”

“Wellness Wednesday” was coined and used by our day program as the days theme, Wellness. I have been asked for several weeks about the body and taking care of it. This week, we are going to talk about being “hangry”, the blend between Hungry and Angry and how I react sometimes if I am not norshed or dont think things through

If you type the word hangry in Google it is defined as bad-tempered or irritable as a result of hunger. This can be true if has not properly nourished themselves or someone that cares for one is unsure of one is nourished. Sometimes as autistics we want to just grab whatever thought process spinning in our head at that given moment. It can be “Wendy’s” or “McNuggets”, but, is that what we really should have?

Today was one of those exact moments.

Now with my new routines at the day program for lunch I will oftentimes grab a special at the local convince store’s sub stand and its usually the same turkey sandwich each Tuesday with a Peanut Buter Cookie and a Large Diet Pepsi because oftentimes it would mean that I would end my break from soda and treat myself/

The following day, I will have the same Buffalo Chicken Salad from the nearby Italian Restaurant. I have been having it each week that they know me by name when picking it up and I know the total of the check when I pick it up. Nonetheless, that has been my weekly routine for some time now.

Anyway, today as I am writing this is one of those days, I had a big lunch. I had been learning several cleaning skills throughout the day, I came home and had a training/meeting. As soon as it was over, I was becoming hangry.

I had gone to see my parents and had learned my dad already had his dinner and my mom had a late lunch at Wendy’s. I immediately demanded that I be taken there and was denied that request because my mother was exhausted from working all day. Nonetheless I persistently demanded that I be taken to Wendy’s now. I was offered either vehicle, but I haven’t driven in a year and knew that I was in no shape to do it today. I became mildly verbally aggressive and lashed out behind my mother for not considering me while immediately redacting that thought. Next, I heard her working in the basement and I again demanded that I be taken to Wendy’s.

Then she said “Dustin, why don’t you go to the freezer and find something to fix?”

Aha, why didn’t do this earlier? This would have eliminated all the bickering among myself and my parents and the verbal aggression (yes, I am taking my meds!) But, why was I so lackluster in thinking this first?

Because fast food is just that, fast! You will get that instant gratification, but you will pay for it in bad health and out of your wallet!

Yes, Fast Food is to the autistics delight, especially if you crave something and all you can think about is just that and sometimes only that. You must divert your thoughts to what you have. Between my mom and I when we went grocery shopping over the weekend. we spent $210 in groceries, plus much more other foods from when I left my last chapter. So why, oh why, would need to go to fast food joint to fill my hanger need. Because it is fast and it will quench your hunger and thirst, but it will not nourish you currently.

So, as I dug out of the freezer, my mind was all over the place, breaded mushrooms, fish, frozen pizza, chicken thighs, what about the air fryer, toaster, oven, etc. All these thought processes in my mind.

Then another light bulb clicked, how about the kitchen freezer.

I up to the kitchen, and found something right as I opened the freezer, Mozzarella sticks! I immediately prep the tray and put them in the toaster, which I am glad they added the instructions specifically for the toaster on the box.

For the next 8-9 minutes while they are cooking, I am anxiously pacing in the kitchen desperate for nutrition. I see I still have flavored water in the fridge and quench a little bit of my thirst with water. I find marinara sauce from a past take out meal and I get a paper plate and napkin, and voila, the ding of the toaster is sounded.

I take my time and place the mozzarella sticks and after taking the first few bites I feel so much better! Why didn’t do this 30 minutes before this moment then I would have eaten 20 minutes earlier and felt better then too!

As I finished my meal, I questioned my mother as to whether I needed to wash the two dishes I used. I was instructed to rinse them and leave them in the sink for later.

You see, in the end I was fed, and it was done with minimalist stress. If I had only thought about taking my nourishment seriously and put some care and take time to learn make what you are putting in your body, it will love you in return!

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