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Autism: Who Am I Really?

24 Oct

Today my energy is very low, and I am wondering if my thoughts on gardening, preserving food, and living a more self-sustaining lifestyle are actually practical for me to consider.

My dreams are vast, inspiring, and active – but my life has never followed that pattern. Again I find myself seeking… always seeking, to be someone I am not.

I can do some basic sewing, and can prepare crafts for preschool age children, but I am not the type of person who can just pick up some materials, and make something beautiful. I want to be that person, but it is not who I am. I am a dreamer. I like the pictures, the smells, the decorations… but outside of my own thoughts, I cannot bring these things to reality. I want to be able to, but, that is not who I am.

During the darker months of winter, I find myself designing and dreaming over a vast fruit, herb, and vegetable garden. In the spring, I want to plant. The desire is deep within me. However, once summer hits (along with the heat and horrible allergies) I battle against going outside. My energy is too low, and the grass and heat make it difficult to breathe.

While I can grow some things – sunflowers, pumpkins, tomatoes – I really don’t know what I am doing (or have the energy to keep up) in order to grow much of my food needs for the year. I wish I could. It seems like a worthy goal – but it isn’t who I am.

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Perhaps I could learn to garden, and I think I would like to, but do I have the energy to keep it up? I never have in the past.

When autumn is coming near, and the leaves start to fall, I dream of a pantry full of canned fruits and vegetables that I have preserved from my own garden. I can imagine myself going in to choose my foods throughout the winter, and I feel content within my dream. But canning my own food would mean I would have to spend the time learning how to both garden, and safely preserve the food. While I might be able to learn how through a course taken with others, having to go out to learn among others would be so exhausting, I likely wouldn’t follow through.

At this time, I own three cats and a dog. I am an animal lover – that is not just a dream – but when I ache to own sheep, goats, chickens, llamas… I see myself playing with them. I know intellectually they are a lot of work to care for, and still I long for them.

I have had many rabbits and guinea pigs in the past. Even they were more work than I had energy for. I did love having them – but for me, who has always had such low energy, is it practical to dream of having more?

In my mind, I have such beautiful ambitions, such wonderful ideas – yet they do not line up with who I am. I am a dreamer, and unless I can find a way to bring those thoughts into reality (without going against who I am, for then I will only fail again) I really ought to just stay true to the person that I am.

So maybe instead of praying for a life apart – private land, large gardens, huge pantry… I should instead be seeking a way to decrease my expenses, while also decreasing my workload, in order to function within the level of energy I have been given – which is incredibly low.

How do I pull away from this lifestyle of always trying to do more, to push myself as people have often told me to do – when a lot of the time, it takes all of my effort just to get out of bed in the morning. How do I turn from what I believe others expect of me, and who I thought I should have been, and allow myself to be who I really am?

And who am I, really?

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3 responses to “Autism: Who Am I Really?

  1. kazst

    October 24, 2015 at 3:20 pm

    I too used to dream big, but I have learned my limitations. I am still dreaming, but now my dreams are about comforts and conveniences. Unfortunately, these things take money.

    Liked by 1 person

     
  2. threekidsandi

    October 24, 2015 at 8:41 pm

    Decreasing your expenses and preserving your own food without the work of growing. This is easily done where I live, because the local food shelf becomes overwhelmed with fresh produce from stores and private growers from the end of summer until the end of October. They have more apples than they can handle. If you know how to process your food and preserve it for later months, a lot of food will not go to waste. Look for the excess food in your area and process it at home. Keep healthy stuff out the landfill and in your cupboards!

    Like

     
  3. Nicki “Angel” Mann

    October 24, 2015 at 10:31 pm

    I dream of having a lot of animals too. I wouldn’t mind the work that needs to be done to take care of the animals… although I have low energy too. What I wouldn’t have the energy for is working a zillion hours a week to pay for all the food and vet bills for my animal friends, because I wouldn’t want to use any of them as meat or anything like that. Right now I have a dog and two fish. And I am REALLY WISHING for a goat!

    Like

     

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