Without Creature Comforts

This winter has been one for the books not only in here in Southwestern Pennsylvania, but across the United States as well as across the pond. For us here we have had weather that I haven’t experienced in almost a decade, at least of continuous pattern, add a National Health Emergency, and that tops the feeling of isolation even more.  As I am writing this post, I feel with the citizens of Texas right now, as I do know what it is like to experience many winter events. Yes, I know you are not used to it and your government does not have the equipment necessary for restoring services. I too have at times been without life’s essentials

Growing up on my father’s family plot for over 30 years, for about 12 of my first years of living there, getting water wasn’t as easy as turning the tap. The local water supplier for the region took the land adjacent to where my parents still live and built first a water tower, then a second to compliment a water treatment facility to serve the region at the nearby river. As such we were billed for water from that entity, although they weren’t our local utility for the whole family plot and that water had to be “pumped” from the public tank to a private pit adjacent to my family home. As such, this was my dad’s responsibility and for many years we didn’t take vacations due to his need to supply water to the family and the farms. Frequently, we would experience water disruptions to that service that we oftentimes had to go to others houses to shower. My father, at his breaking point and an employee, attended council meetings at our local municipality to fight for not only our street but other parts of the municipality for public water, after a year, we got public water that you could turn the tap to. We still had issues after this juncture as a pump station was installed and at times of power surges or failures, the service would be interrupted, however in recent years it was remedied.

Coming to power and other above ground issues we have had issues with that as well. Having Internet since I was 13 in my home, I am somewhat in need of it to function, at times I remember having meltdowns when things would be out of service, however in later years, my parents would have broadband telephone and that would expedite a response, so that too I can relate to and difficulties faced in that situation. When we are dependent on utilities toe entertain ourselves, we get overly anxious and want everything to work just right. For example, on a day recently at e when I had several Zoom Meetings scheduled, around the lunch hour, our broadband service was interrupted. I had a slight upset, thankfully because I had an unlimited data plan on my wireless devices, I got by without minimal stresses.

Yes, winter and 2020 leaning into the first quarter of 2021 has been challenging for many autistics, myself included. Sometimes, I wonder what stops me from just giving up what I am doing and just give up period. Well, it’s the stories I read online of autistics that are still have to work on gaining skills and knowledge necessary when they become adults. I think of where I was just around 20 years ago, sitting in a locked residential facility wondering if I would be able to return to my parents home to live out the rest of my childhood because of challenging behaviors that I presented, I sometimes wonder why, 20 years later when I sometimes act so juvenile why my parents still help me live independently? Why do they take all the heat from me about stupid nonsense and the mean things about them, yet they keep coming back for more? Because they love me, and there’s MANY Autism Supporters out there, especially the moms, dads, grandparents, siblings, support workers, paraprofessionals, etc. that many times forgo many things for their autistic or special needs person. When something happens to the one they support, they are to the rescue to help them in any way they can and to them Thank You and any unpleasantness we are experiencing due to these adverse weather conditions, the sun will come out again and it to will be warm, where we can all be happy again!

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