Eloise Profile picture
Aug 10 11 tweets 2 min read
I have just been away on the most stressful holiday of my life: a cruise. And it’s a great example of why I’m so glad I finally know I’m #ActuallyAutistic . A 🧵
Although it’s such a privilege to go on holiday at all, I didn’t want to go. Past me: Don’t be so ungrateful. Autistic me: This might be a challenge. It’s OK to be nervous.
It was a big family group. Past me: I must catch up with, and minister to them all by listening and really engaging. Autistic me: this is stressful. Who is most safe? I’ll hang out with them.
I was scared of the ship sinking. Past me: How ridiculous! You’re an adult! Autistic me: This is reasonable, yet probably unlikely. Check out the lifeboats, though, if that feels good.
The cruise ship was packed with people and so noisy. Past me: I hate this, but everyone else likes it. Just get on with it! Autistic me: I hate this, it’s OK to go back to my cabin for a while. Or go off alone and look at the sea.
I really loved the empty walkways at the back of the boat. With my headphones on, I wanted to dance on them. Past me: You are an adult. Grow up! Autistic me: Reader, I danced.
About those headphones: I wore them a lot while navigating through the crowds on deck. Past me: didn’t even have headphones. Autistic me: floated about in a glorious bubble of Florence + the Machine
The buffet was hard; I struggle when food is shared. The formal meals were hard; I felt trapped. Past me: Why are you so weird? Autistic me: I will manage this best I can, and I’ll be home soon.
I did cry, I was overwhelmed a few times. Past me: I am on my own here. I must cope. Autistic me to that one lovely family member: Please can I cry for a moment, this is horrible for me, and here’s why.
The triumph and relief on getting home was immense. Past me: intense angry house cleaning, batch cooking, holiday laundry. Autistic me: I am so glad I saw that new European city. It was so hard, but there were better parts too. Drink tea, fall asleep with the cat.
This is why I am so so glad to know I am #ActuallyAutistic. It is life affirming for me. It is kindness. It is freedom. 💕🚢 (But cruises are not for me 😂)

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