Eating! I love eating when I like the food that is.
Eating is a double-edge sword for me though. Food is something that does and always has caused me a great deal of anxiety. Something that has always been misunderstood and mislabeled as “picky eating”. Picky eating is putting it mildly for me, it is way more than just being picky and not liking certain foods, its a huge source of anxiety for me that most do not, have not, and will not ever understand.
I’m not exactly certain what fuels the anxiety besides being on the Autism Spectrum. I wish I knew because I would fix it. I find that being able to express just how badly food makes me feel is helping. It is really hard to overcome this eating problem I have, but I keep trying. I am constantly reminded to eat and to buy foods that I like when I go to the store, but that is a major anxiety trigger for me. I have no clue what I like and I care too much about how much things cost.
I try so hard to buy myself foods when I go grocery shopping for the family, but it doesn’t go very well. My heart starts to pound hard and fast, my palms begin to sweat, and I begin to feel disoriented…it is not a fun feeling. I try to keep calm and not panic, “It’s only food you crazy woman!” I shout inside my head at myself to no avail.
I stand there looking at all the options in front of, to the side of, and to the back of me. There are too many choices. I am over-whelmed! What will I choose? When I do choose something how much will it costs? “Can I just choose something without worrying about the cost for once?”, I think to myself. The answer of course is, “No!”.
If I get over those things and I choose to to ponder the thought of trying this new item, the panic gets worse.
What will it taste like? What is it supposed to taste like? What will the texture be? What will the color be? Oh, and for the love of God please don’t let it have a strong smell! Like seriously my nose is too sensitive for that? How do I prepare it? Will I like it? What happens if I don’t like it? Is there a consequence for that? If there is a consequence for not liking it, what will it be?
Will I enjoy this new food item? Will I waste it? I hate waste! Gosh I hope I like it. I don’t want to waste food when there are starving people in this world. I don’t want to waste money for obvious reasons. I definitely don’t want to waste my time like this panicking over food. Man, I hate waste! I really, really, really dislike waste…
There are just way too many unknown variables in this equation. I am not certain how I am supposed to choose for me. Feeding others is easy. Feeding myself is hard.