Showing posts with label health. Show all posts
Showing posts with label health. Show all posts

Coeliac Disease : A Year Living Gluten Free

image title reads coeliac a year living gluten free image to the right is of gluten free baking. A cupcake with multicoloured sprinkles and a chocolate chip cookie.

Being diagnosed as having Coeliac Disease in adulthood was really difficult. I'd had 32 years being able to eat whatever I wanted. I'd enjoyed my life as a foodie, eating out often, trying new things and enjoying the freedom and convenience of a unrestricted diet. It isn't an exaggeration to say that being diagnosed coeliac felt like the end of the world. I felt like one of the key aspects of my personality had been taken away from me. I couldn't possibly be a 'foodie' anymore. I'm not afraid to say that accepting that diagnosis was a period of grief. I mourned for the food I could no longer eat. After a period of self pity and genuine sadness I began to get accustomed to my new way of life and it is an entirely different way of life, it's so much more than 'not being allowed' foods with gluten. 

A Day In The Life Of An Autistic Woman

image title reads autism a day in the life of an autistic woman the image to the right shows a sculpture of a human head with rings around representing thoughts.

Initially this post was about the pandemic and how having autism has impacted on my experiences throughout the pandemic but as I began writing I realised that I can't really detail how the pandemic has affected me if you don't already know how my autism effects me. I've written a bit about how I got my autism diagnosis, shared my experiences growing up undiagnosed in a mainstream school and I've talked about how autism impacts on dating and holidays but I've never really shared how it impacts me on a daily basis. I've never shared an 'ordinary' day with autism. So here it is, the thoughts, feelings and emotions of an autistic mother on a 'normal' day. 

Autism & Relationships: How Autism Impacts On Dating

Image title reads autism how autism impacts on dating image to the right is of a male and female holding hands

So Valentines Day, there's no escaping it, even if you don't actively partake in it there's hearts, flowers and declarations of love everywhere you go. I thought about all the posts I could write, the gift guides, the 'how to's' and the 'top ten romantic...' which are all great ideas but they felt a little dishonest, how can I talk about those things when I haven't acknowledged the thing Valentines Day is mostly about, relationships, or more specifically romantic relationships. Having Aspergers effects all aspects of every relationship I have but today I've decided to open up about how having Aspergers effects dating.

Diagnosing Coeliac Disease And Living Gluten Free

Image title reads coeliac the symptoms, getting a diagnosis and treatment The image to the right is of hands brushing through wheat fields.

Coeliac disease is an autoimmune condition. It is not to be confused with a gluten intolerance or a fad diet. People with coeliac disease have an immune response when they ingest gluten. Continued exposure to gluten causes damage to the villi in the intestine. The villi are finger like structures that usually stand upright and help the body to absorb vitamins and minerals from the food we eat. In those with untreated coeliac disease the villi become flattened and can no longer perform their function.

Undiagnosed Autism and Mainstream School | My Experience

Image title reads undiagnosed autism and mainstream school image to the right is of a young primary school girl (the author of this blog)

 The days are long but the years are short-
the most significant parenting quote i've ever read. I vividly remember thinking "I can't wait for Iris to start nursery, only a few more years to go". Being at home with young babies and toddlers is immensely hard work. To me it felt like my entire existence was being swallowed by a teeny tiny, snack monster. Constantly on demand, constantly needing to be aware and constantly being 'switched on'. It all felt so constant. So unending. Now nursery isn't a few years away, it's now and I'm not ready. It isn't because Iris isn't ready, she's been ready for months, she's been craving the structure and mental stimulation that only a learning environment can give and it certainly isn't because I'm not ready for the break- I am chomping at the bit to get some time back to re-discover myself and give myself the opportunity to work, exercise and be creative again. The reason I'm not ready for Iris to start nursery is because I'm not ready to deal with what 'school' means to me. I'm not emotionally ready to send her into the system that destroyed me.

How Autism Impacts On Holidays

Image shows a woman dressed in hot weather clothing with her thumbs up. Alongside the image is a title that reads Autism how autism impacts on holidays

Holidays- whether they be long, lazy days relaxing in the sun or exhilarating explorations of foreign lands, they are sure to be enjoyed- aren't they?

A holiday for some is a welcome break from normality and routine. For me a break from routine is akin to torture. I cannot fully explain to those who don't adhere to routine as strictly as I do how much it pains me to stray from my everyday habits. I need my daily rituals to survive and a holiday is just one long stream of exhaustion. Spontaneity is my arch nemesis and that makes holidaying, especially with other people, extremely difficult.

Autistic & Pregnant: What To Expect From An Early Miscarriage

image title reads autistic and pregnant what to expect in an early miscarriage there is an image to the right of a lit candle on a dark bokeh effect background


Please note this was written pre-Covid.

There are a few different things can indicate the start of a miscarriage, for me the first sign that I was miscarrying was bleeding. It wasn't gushing from me like you see on television and I wasn't in any pain. I know that bleeding is common throughout early pregnancy and so I was determined not to panic until I had been told it was bad news.

Autistic & Pregnant: How To Practically Deal With A Miscarriage

Image title reads Autistic and pregnant how to practically deal with a miscarriage alongside an image of two hands holding two pieces of a red paper broken heart

This is the post that I wish I didn't have the knowledge to write and I hope you never have to read. Sadly, miscarriage is incredibly common, happening in 1 in 4 pregnancies. It happens for a myriad of reasons which I'm not going to debate here. I will simply reiterate what you have already been wasn't your fault and there is nothing you could have done.

Autistic & Pregnant: What To Expect At An Ultra Sound Examination.

Image title reads Autistic and pregnant what to expect at an ultrasound exam. Image to the right of title shows a pregnant woman having an ultrasound exam performed on her.

Written Pre-Covid.

Ultrasound scans are typically performed twice throughout a standard pregnancy, once at 12 weeks and again at 20 weeks. Mine were performed at the ultrasound department of my local hospital- the same hospital I chose to give birth at.

Autistic & Pregnant: What To Expect At A Typical Midwife Appointment

Image of titel reading autistic and pregnant what to expect at a typical midwife appointment followed by an image of a nurse in blue scrubs holding a clipboard and taking notes.

The amount you see your midwife will vary depending on your personal situation though I have written a basic overview of how many midwife appointments to expect during pregnancy to give you a basic idea of what to expect. Below I have detailed some of the typical checks made at these appointments.

Autistic & Pregnant: How Many Midwife Appointments Do You Get During Pregnancy?


Image title reads autistic and pregnant how many midwife appointments do you get during pregnancy? alongside this title is an image of a yellow stethoscope on a light blue background with a red paper heart laying next to it.

*Written Pre-Covid*

This is a guide to the typical antenatal appointments offered by the NHS in the United Kingdom as of 2017. Please use this as a guideline, some areas and some midwives may operate differently.

Autistic & Pregnant: What To Expect At A Booking Appointment

Image title reads autistic and pregnant what to expect at a booking appointment and to the left is an image of a female hand writing in a book with a spotty pen.

A booking appointment is usually your first contact with your midwife. It involves 'booking' you into the system and collecting a wide variety of health and lifestyle information from you and your partner. You are also required to submit a urine sample and blood samples will be taken. 

Autistic & Pregnant: Should I Take Anti-depressants During Pregnancy?

image shows title reading Autistic and pregnant should I take antidepressants during pregnancy to the left is an image of various pills and medications on a bright yellow background.

I'm not writing this post to cause controversy and I know that some people will not agree with the decision I made but for many people with a wide variety of health conditions it's a decision that needs to be made. As explained by my doctor, a lot of medication is not tested on pregnant women purely because of the ethics involved and because of that it's very difficult for medical professionals to know which medication is safe. Tests are performed on pregnant animals, something which doesn't sit well with me but I do understand the need for it. So often the best a doctor can tell you is how the medication affects animal foetuses and then it's down to you to decide if it's a risk worth taking.

Autistic & Pregnant: Finding Out I Was Pregnant

Image shows title that reads Autistic and Pregnant Fiding out I was pregnant: my story alongside an image of a man and woman holding a pair of baby booties between their clasped hands

I have been pregnant twice. My first pregnancy ended in miscarriage at 6 weeks. My second pregnancy has so far been successful. On both occasions the baby was very much planned and I was expecting a positive test, though that didn't prevent me from being surprised, shocked and a little fearful.

Autistic & Pregnant: What To Do When You Find Out You Are Pregnant

Image shows title reading: Autistic and pregnant what to do when you find out you are pregnant alongside an image of a pregnancy test laid in grass.

Congratulations! You're pregnant!

and if you are feeling anything like I was then you are feeling a whole lot of emotions varying from immense happiness to crushing self-doubt. In those first few days after seeing those two blue lines my emotions went crazy. Yes, some people will say that's the hormones but it's also the realisation that your whole life is about to change and no matter how prepared you are, change is scary for everyone but especially those with autism. Don't feel guilty or shy away from your emotions. Accept your emotions and remember that there is no 'right way' to process this information and if you feel able to why not open up and share your thoughts and feelings with your partner. The chances are they are feeling the same wild mix of emotions too.  

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