An unusual title, I suppose but my brain rain out of wit; possibly, it requires more coffee. Currently, the neighbour’s car alarm is going off and sending me to distraction and then the the car needs to cuddle me.
Anyway, digression aside and apologies for running a day late (I had college stuff getting in the way).
As I’ve mentioned before the triad of autistic traits includes obsessive behaviour. I’ve always been one of those people who is generally obsessively clean, however, I ride and race mountain bikes and run and in the past, I have engaged in several roles and hobbies which run completely counter to my desire to feel clean. I’ve spent weeks in a field on exercise with the military, I’ve played airsoft, I also run. The crux of the matter is that I seem to spend a lot of my self-soothing time in pursuits which involve getting dirty. The idea of being dirty is completely offensive to me and yet, when following my obsessions, I generally end up filthy. The exception to being dirty therefore, seems to be that being dirty without purpose is abhorrent to my senses. But getting dirty in order to achieve something beneficial to me, that’s something that I’m perfectly happy to do. Except, I cannot stand my hands being dirty… never could. Whatever is being done, my obsessive behaviour means that I washing and drying my hands in-between doing tasks which involve getting my hands wet (like washing dishes FFS!)
Therefore, I have to wear gloves whilst riding, I wear latex gloves whilst washing my bike; which despite the fact that I have nowhere to wash a bike at home, it gets dismantled after every ride and cleaned: in the bath. No, I am not Albert Steptoe, I don’t get in the bath at the same time!
I am aware that the desire for cleanliness is not uncommon amongst the neurodiverse and I’m also aware that at times,we all run out of the mental strength to satisfy our own requirements to be clean or to maintain a clean environment. This tends to lead to feeling worse and thus the circle becomes ever decreasing. Therefore, I feel that it’s vital to do as much as possible to avoid those lows; if you have to go and get dirty in order to smile and then get clean, do it. Our lives are precious, interesting and diverse, with different challenges than those of the PNT world. So we must do whatever we can to feel complete and well. In my case, I’ve got a few days with my girlfriend and then on Sunday, I shall be out getting muddy and then cleaning the bike again.
#actuallyautistic #austismspeaks #mountainbiking #autism