The above picture hits me right where I live!
I cherish my space!
Space became an issue when I moved in with my dear, sweet Mom after retiring from the federal workforce in Washington, D.C. My precious space was reduced to the size of a bedroom. The bedroom is also occupied by my Mom’s mega-sized computer desk. I have a passion for computers, laptops, tablets, etc. My Mom doesn’t share that passion and does not use her computer near as much. She does make almost a half-dozen stops in my room throughout the day to see what her FACEBOOK friends are up to. I’ll just say sharing my space does NOT come naturally to me.
I feel trapped sometimes when someone else is around while I am in my precious space. I prefer to do most things by myself such as computer tasks, working on crossword puzzles, video-gaming, and doing household chores. I like doing things with NO witnesses. It’s like driving with a back seat driver behind you second-guessing your driving performance.
I’m mostly okay when my Mom comes in and checks in on her FACEBOOK. I try to be patient if she’s in a conversation mood even when I am not. But it’s a whole different story when my Mom plays a video accompanied by SOUND!
Logically speaking, I know she has every right to do so. It is her computer and furthermore, it is her house! But with having Autism, my reaction to the sound is way out of bounds. What comes over me I cannot fully describe in words. I have tried to stay in the room and try to get my mind off of it. I have as much success at getting my mind off of it as I would have ignoring a sliver of glass stuck in my foot. I don’t tell her to turn it off since I have no right to dictate such. Telling her to turn it down doesn’t work because I can hear it at high, medium, and low volumes. The only coping mechanism is to get off my rear and leave far enough that the sound isn’t within earshot which usually entails going outside weather permitting; if not, there is the garage. When the sound is gone, my meltdown is over.
I am not bothered if the sound is coming from my computer. Easy fix! Just turn it off if I don’t want to hear it. I don’t write this off as simply a control thing. Yes, if I am playing the sound, there is no meltdown. However, my turning into a wild animal when hearing sound around, above, or below me is something I truly wish I could control. Autism is what it is. I have coping mechanisms, but just when I think I’m in control, my Autism rises up and slaps me in the face.
On the bright side, and there is one, there’s no space like my space. Space where I can pursue my strengths and passions. Space where I can stim to my delight. My bedroom isn’t much space since my electronic gadgets do take up a lot of room. But what space of my own there is, I feel blessed to have it and cherish the time I am in it.