Thursday, 22 September 2016

4 days being sick - is this what it's like?


After two days spent crawling from the bed to the toilet continuously and two more days laying limp on the sofa, I'm finally feeling a bit better.  Honestly I've not been struck down by a bug like this in years.  Now, on the road to recovery, I learned something I didn't expect about my son's difficulties.

While I've been ill, I've not eaten anything.  I found it hard even to have a sip of water. On Monday I had to shout on school route instructions to my husband in between taking my head out of the toilet - it was not good!

Tuesday I managed some water and some dry bread and by Wednesday I decided my biggest problem was being weak because I'd not eaten for four days. At lunchtime I ate some sliced chicken.  Then by evening I looked in the fridge and realised we had little in the house because I hadn't got any shopping in. As hubby was at work, the kids wonderful grandparents had been helping with school runs and with the kids themselves.  I fished around in the fridge whilst still holding my delicate stomach and found some tender-stem broccoli left over from last week's Hello Fresh box.  Grandma steamed it for me, I sprinkled on salt and ate it....

And it was good.

Within about ten minutes I felt better.  Better enough in fact to finish putting the kids to bed myself.  Yep, I definitely needed to eat.  After the kids went to bed I searched around the house made a baked potato with butter, some baked beans and grated cheese,  Except I still felt uneasy and wasn't sure how they'd ...mix...in my stomach. 

I dished them up on separate plates.  I sniffed all the dishes... and immediately wasn't so sure about the beans. I went to the potato as the safest option and managed to swallow a spoonful ok.  I popped some grated cheese onto the beans and then again that seemed ok. It was when it came to mixing the lot together that I wasn't sure.  The different flavours and textures in my sensitive system... even the smell of it all.   And then it hit me... is this what it's like for my son?

David has autism and like many other autistic kids and individuals he has a restricted diet.  His senses are heighted - sight, touch, sound, smell and taste.  He finds it difficult to have foods with different textures together and smells everything before he puts it in his mouth.  His system is so sensitive that he can tell when Tesco's changed their garlic bread recipe - and so stopped eating it. He is five years old and we still often feed him from a segregated plate.  Just like my separate dishes, he's not sure when foods are mixed together.  He doesn't trust them.

In an effort to increase his diet last year we went through a horrendous few weeks of forcing food into his mouth.  Day after day of holding him down and forcing.. coincidentally.. a baked bean into his mouth. After two weeks he would eat baked beans with encouragement. After a month he stopped again. It felt terrible then... and feels awful now.

As I look at the food, that I can't bare to mix together in front of me, I felt a new found sense of appreciation for what my son goes through.. possibly at every meal. My sensitivity will reduce to a more 'normal' level, but his never will. And perhaps I'll have just a little more patience when he sniffs and rejects food and try and think of other ways to help him eat.

32 comments:

  1. It's amazing to imagine how David sees the world. Every day must be such a challenge. I hope you are feeling better, sounds like you have had quite a rough time.
    Thanks for linking up to #coolmumclub xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Bit better still. Probably 5/10.

      I'd love to be him for a day to experience and understand the world the way he does do o can adjust and be in it with him. But I obviously can't.

      I love him to pieces though.

      Thanks for commenting.

      Delete
  2. I can wholeheartedly identify with this being autistic. I actually hate being sick for sensory purposes so it is tough. I hope your son gets a speedy recovery X #wotw

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Fortunately he doesn't seem to have caught it! Thanks for commenting.

      Delete
  3. Sorry you have been feeling so lousy. As I was reading your post I didn't imagine that you would find some good in your predicament. Finding understanding. Amazing. Hope you are feeling better now. #wotw

    ReplyDelete
  4. Sorry to hear you've been poorly. Hopefully you'll be feeling better soon! #wotw

    ReplyDelete
  5. Sorry to hear you've had such a rough week, though glad you're eating again now. It must be so tough for David, and to know about the recipe changes shows how very tuned in he his to every single taste. Finding ways to better understand our kids and what they go through is always powerful, so at least there was one good thing to come from your horrible illness. Take care, thanks for sharing with #WotW

    ReplyDelete
  6. I'm so sorry you have been so ill, it sounds like a terrible bug, I hope you are feeling better now x My eldest son, autistic and 28 yrs old, still eats his food segregated. He will eat one thing at a time always, the only exception being when we have rice. He only like rice if it's covered with some kind of sauce.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Oh no! I hope you are feeling 100% better soon...It sounds like some good from you being poorly. You understand more about your son's eating habits. It was so interesting to read. Take care x

    ReplyDelete
  8. Gosh, sounds like you were hit by a very nasty bug. Glad you're on the mend and a little bit of food is helping you to build your strength up.
    It must've been quite a revelation for you to connect the way you're feeling to that of your son's. It was a really interesting read as I know little about this side of Autism.
    #WoTW

    ReplyDelete
  9. Hi Ann, I'm so glad you are feeling better again. And I find reading posts like this strangely reasuring. My son has a heightened senses and although he is better now he's older, when he was younger he would gag and urge just from the smell of something. The amount of times we had to cancel speech therapy because we had to walk past the fishing boats and they would cause him to gag, is no bodies business.

    You do have to live with someone with autism to appreciate what it can be like, but it's also nice to know we are not alone.

    xx

    ReplyDelete
  10. This is so interesting. It must have been horrendous having to force feed him. I'm so glad you're feeling better - Mums can't be ill! Alison x #BigPinkLink

    ReplyDelete
  11. I used to babysit a little guy with severe autism who would only eat salt bagels and sweet potato baby food- only Gerber Brand. He did end up having to have a feeding tube put into his stomach but then went through intensive therapy to help with his dietary needs. I remember his mother's anxiety and frustration. Sensory issues are nothing if not frustrating. Glad you are on the up and up though.

    #marvmondays

    ReplyDelete
  12. An interesting way to give an insight into what it's like for those with Autism. I've never been able to mix up my food and textures like baked beans make me feel physically ill, just thinking about it now...urgh...#mmbc

    ReplyDelete
  13. I'm so sorry you were so ill, it sounds absolutely horrendous, and it's just so much worse then there's children to look after!! And when you were describing how you weren't sure things would mix, and had to look at them, and think about the separately, I was thinking 'yes! I do that when I've been ill too!' But then I realised what an interesting insight into what it is like for your autistic child and his eating patterns. I found it really thought provoking, and it sounds like it was a big moment of realisation for you. Lots of every day things must be so challenging for you all, thanks for sharing these insights with us.
    #bigpinklink

    ReplyDelete
  14. Oh bless you we have flu and chest infections here!! Hope you feel better soon!!
    Thanks for linking to #ablogginggoodtime

    ReplyDelete
  15. Bless your little one. I cant imagine much worse than having heightened senses. Experiencing 9 months of it whilst pregnant was more than enough for me! Being ill is horrible, but I guess the silver lining is that its given you a greater appreciation of his needs. Im glad youre feeling better. Thanks for sharing this on #MarvMondays. Emily

    ReplyDelete
  16. I'm so sorry to hear you've been so unwell. But how fascinating that it gave you an insight into what your son might be experiencing. Thanks for linking up to #SundayBest x

    ReplyDelete
  17. Sounds like you've had a tough week. I had a stomach bug recently and went through the same trauma forcing food in to myself to get energy. That's a really interesting perspective about how your son must feel. I think as parents it's easy to do things for their own good and inadvertently go a bit too far. At least something positive has come out of your illness! #KCACOLS

    ReplyDelete
  18. Sometimes it just hits you like a train, this is how it must be for them. We have food issues too and I am currently writing one of my glimpse into posts about how my big lad uses every sense to investigate his food before he eats anything new. Hope you are fully recovered and sorry to hear you were so poorly! #Spectrumsunday

    ReplyDelete
  19. I thought I was the only person who had forced something into my son's mouth to encourage him to try something new (or old) and it actually works most of the time. Most people are horrified but he actually likes most of the things despite him protesting loudly! We also have had a sick week in our house this week :-(

    ReplyDelete
  20. That sounds rough - hope you are fully recovered now. It was interesting to hear how a change in your sensory perception gave you a glimpse into what life can be like for your son. #spectrumsunday

    ReplyDelete
  21. Sorry to hear that you were so poorly Ann - but in a way it sounds like a tiny blessing to have that very real insight into how David approaches food. I'm glad you're feeling better - I'm new to your blog since meeting you on the Tube after the MADS but I really do love it, and your writing style. Thanks so much for linking up at #KCACOLS. Hope you come back again next Sunday.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Hi! I'm sorry you've been so poorly. I often feel that good things can some from difficult circumstances so there is a positive in this moment of enlightenment with how David sees the world and how his sensory perceptions influence how he feels about food. I guess that is some small compensation for feeling so wretched! Thanks for hosting. #SpectrumSunday

    ReplyDelete
  23. I am sorry to hear that you have not been well. I hope you feel better soon. It's interesting to consider how others view the world, and your little one sounds like he has a wonderful view. Thank you for linking up to the #DreamTeam x

    ReplyDelete
  24. What an uncomfortable way to appreciate how your son feels! I hope you feel better now. #KCACOLS

    ReplyDelete
  25. I'm really sorry to hear that you have been so unwell and I'm glad you are now feeling better. Just by reading this post have opened my eyes and have shown me food in a different light. One which I have never thought to look at it in. Having read this I have a slight inkling into how my now 3 years food phobia might be for her.xx #KCACOLS

    ReplyDelete
  26. I'm so sorry you had to go through such discomfort - sounds like a horrible virus. But I imagine experiencing something similar to your son's sensory aversions to food will definitely help you better support him in future. I know I often wish to better understand my kids' needs and have had to reconcile myself to the fact that I will never truly know - but glimpses like this might just help us help them all the more x

    ReplyDelete
  27. This is a fantastic post :) My daughter has sensitivities around food, she prefers to only stick to beige and dry foods, if she doesn't like the look of something on her plate she will launch it across the room. This gives such a great insight to how children with sensitivities feel about foods, the smell, the texture and colour - thanks so much for sharing :)

    ReplyDelete
  28. Our boy was terrible with food for a while, he is so much better now but theres still some things he struggles with, hes only 4 and non verbal so he cant say i dont like it, he tests anything new or that hes not to sure of with the tip of his tongue, he loves smoothies so while he was going through his rough patch with food or of he has a bad day we know he at least has had something good, we also put organic supplements in it too, he is fine with anything as long as he cant see it. Sorry you were sick glad ypur feeling better :) Marie

    ReplyDelete
  29. Our boy was terrible with food for a while, he is so much better now but theres still some things he struggles with, hes only 4 and non verbal so he cant say i dont like it, he tests anything new or that hes not to sure of with the tip of his tongue, he loves smoothies so while he was going through his rough patch with food or of he has a bad day we know he at least has had something good, we also put organic supplements in it too, he is fine with anything as long as he cant see it. Sorry you were sick glad ypur feeling better :) Marie

    ReplyDelete
  30. Sorry you were ill; I hope you're better now. I have always been a 'fussy eater' (one of the many things that suddenly made sense when I realised I was autistic was my fussiness with food) and it's so frustrating to talk to people who don't understand and think it's just awkwardness on my part. I try to be patient with my boys when they won't eat something because it's slightly over cooked or the wrong brand or it's the wrong time of day but even for me it's frustrating so I do understand why it's hard for NT people to get it.

    It's always nice when we get a little glimpse into how things are for our kids, I think.

    #SpectrumSunday

    ReplyDelete

I read all your comments and appreciate you sharing your thoughts with me and our readers. I welcome any feedback on my posts and you can always contact me directly. Thank you.

Follow
@rainbowsaretoo facebook.com/rainbowsaretoobeautiful Ann H on Google + rainbowsaretoo pinterest rainbowsaretoobeautiful bloglovin Instagram rainbowsaretoobeautiful
TOTS100 - UK Parent Blogs
TOTS100