A Mind of My Own
Posted by Gail | Filed under Autism
Chapter 5: Sights, Sounds, Smells
I hate loud noises. When I hear a loud noise, it frightens me. I want to make it stop. When I was little, I didn’t what to do about loud noises, so I just got upset. I’d chew. And I’d stay upset for a long time. Now that I’m older I know that I need to make the noise not so noisy. So I ask my mom to turn down the TV or I close the door.
Even the sound of the toaster popping the toast up bothers me. When I make toast, after I push the toaster button down, I run out of the room until I know the toaster has popped up because I do not like the sound it makes.
Other sounds bother me too. I don’t like the telephone against my ear, so I hold it away from my face. I don’t like the noise in the classroom or in the lunchroom. Sometimes I can’t eat because it’s just too noisy. My mom has taken me to the movies a few times but I don’t really like it very much. It’s very noisy, so I end up having to cover up my ears. The last time we went, she put cotton in my ears, but that felt funny so I ended up taking it out.
I used to hate it when my mom and everybody would sing loud songs like Happy Birthday. It hurt my ears so much I almost wanted to cry. So I told her not to sing. She went away. Then she came back and whisper-sang it to me and that was okay.
It’s funny, not all loud sounds bug me. When I play the drums, that doesn’t bother my ears at all. My mom bought me earplugs but I hated the feel of them in my ears so I won’t wear them. I guess if I’m the noise, it’s okay. It’s just when I can’t control the noise that it really bothers me.
I really hate sound of ketchup or mustard being squeezed out of a bottle. I hate the K-stuff so much, if you even say the word I’ll be sick. When we go out, Alex builds a wall around her food so I don’t have to look at her K-stuff. It means sometimes I end up eating alone – like when everyone else is eating hamburgers, but I’d rather eat alone than look at all that K-stuff.
I hate the smell in my mom and dad’s cars. Every time I get in I say, “It stinks in here.” Smells can make me want to be sick too. Even some words can make me sick. In one book I was reading, one of the characters had the nickname “Barfbag,” and I couldn’t read the word out loud. I had to say “B-bag,” or I would have been sick.
I have favourite clothes I like to wear, even when my mom says they’re too small. My mom took away my favourite pajamas because she said it was summer so it was too hot for long pajamas, but I don’t care because they are my favourite. They are green. I don’t care if I get hot. So I ask my dad for them. But my mom hid them so we can’t find them anywhere.