Autism: Did you say Xoo?!

By Kloey Kaeser

August 22, 2022

I’m back!! (I, being Kloey Kaeser)

I’m going to talk about autism again. You may think, “wow Kloey this is a lot of autism talk,” well, yea it is. But having autism gives you a lot of knowledge about autism, and God made me verbal for a reason; to spread awareness and explain the inner-workings of the autistic brain for those who can’t. Not saying everything is true for everyone, because “if you’ve met one person with autism, you’ve met one person with autism” Something unique about me (depending on your definition of uniqueness… I mean we have many historians concentrated on the following subject) is that I love WWII and learning about Hitler, but unfortunately for you, I have been told I must sensor what I share and to whom because, phewy, Hitler was seriously messed up. (I won’t say anything further).

Okay, back to the subject at hand. Today I want to talk about the why’s of autism. The symptoms we see that are “typical” of autism, but that the general population may not understand. Number 1: change. Change is a biggy in the autism community, one of autism’s most common difficulties, but why? Somewhere I’ve heard: “if you experience anxiety, multiply that by 10 and that’s about how someone with autism feels.” I find that very true. The extreme reactions to change we get out of autistic individuals stem from insanely high anxiety levels that are biologically engineered in our brain because of autism. We constantly feel out of control; working to communicate, read someone’s faces properly, and whatever else is going on in our noggins (which let me tell you, are crazy places). Our brains cycle so, so fast, which is why it can be hard to remain in touch with reality. 

Picture this, I just had an unnerving conversation with an adult whose face looked like she was the principal from Matilda, not knowing what to respond, or how to act because I was terrified. I leave that conversation almost in tears, then as I’m walking down the school hallway, I’m yelled at to get to class (oh boy, breaking rules is a terrible deed and I feel as though I just broke one, for that is typically why teachers yell). Why was I not to class yet? My mind was spinning. Truthfully, I didn’t even feel as if I was at school, I was completely absorbed in thought, thinking the following after I had seen an emergency exit sign on the bus that morning: “hmm, exit, but why does Shakespeare use exeunt? Old English, I hate old English. Ezit. That is how is should be spelled, rather why do we have the letter “x” at all. Xylophone has a “z” sound at the front, as does xenon. Wait, so then how did we decide to spell the word zit with a “z,” it just as well could be xit. Imagine xoo for zoo. Man, I love the zoo, if it's 75 degrees or under”… then I relive in my mind my 3rd-grade school trip to the Columbus zoo, or shall I say xoo, where one of my friends cracked their iPod. Yes, that was a very chaotic train of thought, and no, I’m not joking when I say this is a real conversation I had... That’s why I’m late for class. I finally get there, already on edge from talking to Mrs. Trunchbull and getting yelled at by a teacher, then oh no! My class is not in my room! Panic! Panic! Ahhhh! Ahhh!  (yes, I do think in ahhh a lot, I even say it sometimes when I get surprised or scared and can’t get words out fast enough, ask Christina) Where could my class be?! It is 1:47. We are always in the classroom at 1:47. Disheveled, I set off to find my class (hopeful teachers in the hallway don’t think I’m a juvenile delinquent skipping class) After some searching I find my class outside. Why are they outside?! I cannot fathom it, we are always in the classroom at 1:47. Even though I found my class, I cannot function to participate once outside. With all the anxiety and confusion it took to get to class, the discomfort of it being where it is not supposed to be was the final straw. Change sparks the unknown, unnerving us, and causing anxiety. This was the blow that lit the fuse. (I don’t know if that’s the correct saying, or if I used it right, #autism). I was in shutdown. My brain is completely in overdrive and I can’t stop it to talk or work. It takes at least 15 minutes to get my brain back from spazzing out.

That was a long story, but I hope with this description you get an inside look at what it’s like to live in an autistic brain, the chaos of it, along with why change can cause such substantial reactions leading to lengthened recovery time.  



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