Sensory Overload Fun (Not!)

So, had my weekly work placement at the Career Work Centre (NL Advanced Education and Skills Job Seekers’ Centre) today. And I spent the entire day feeling like my nerves were being dipped in an acid bath. Or, to put it another way, as though each sound above a certain threshold rubbed sandpaper roughly across my nerves. (Particularly in my upper arms – they seem to be the ones reacting most.)

Unfortunately, that threshold was below the volume of water running in a sink (as I discovered at dinner).

And I mean, I spent only 1-1/2 hours out in the main area of the CWC, but between the music, the phones ringing, and the people (I can handle the staff, I’m at least familiar with them, but the consumers? Them I have trouble with), I was feeling as listed above. Even spending the remaining 5-1/2 hours in the quiet room (Wellness Room) didn’t help a huge amount. By the time the work day finished, I was shaky as well as overloaded.

Came home via the bus, as I usually do Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, and retreated to my room to curl up in the darkness and quiet.

Then was jerked awake – and the nerves started complaining again – when Dad called me for dinner. (It was Mom’s night to make dinner, but I think Papa decided to be nice.) That was when I found that water running in the sink was over the sound volume threshold that’s aggravating my nerves right now.

So here I am after dinner (Mom was nice to me and did some of the clean-up; Dad did the rest, because he tends to when he cooks – and was also nice to me), down in my “suite” at my desk, with my shoulders all knotted up with tension and my nerves crackling.

My online (before-present-decade) Aspie friend recommended Vitamin B for my nerves; I’ve been taking it for the last month or so. (Vitamin B100 Complex, to be specific. Vitamin B is water soluble and so anything extra simply gets excreted.) I know that methylcobalamin (a variant of B12) is specific to certain nerve issues (that’s what I took when the virus in 2007 stripped the myelin from the nerves in my legs – see Asperger’s Diagnosis, Official and Non- for a few details), so hopefully the rest of the B vitamins will help.

However, I have no real idea what else I can do to keep this from continuing to happen. I have to be out in the main area of the CWC for at least that 1-1/2 hours, in order to photocopy and post the job ads from the weekend paper, and to help people (someone there wanted info on the ILRC this morning because they’re having trouble getting all the supports they needs for their disability). Yes, it’s only until the end of March, but that’s four more weeks. Four more weeks starting like this is kind of more than I think I can take.

[Edit: Feb. 27/13] As it turns out, one of my ILRC supervisors read this post yesterday (well, I pointed it out to him after he asked how I was feeling), and the decision has been made that I’ll work from the ILRC Mondays as well as Tuesdays. I’ll still do any computer-based projects and presentations I’m requested to do, but I won’t be physically present at the CWC. That will help a lot. Thank you, DH! [/End Edit]


Anyone have any other suggestions? I would prefer to try to avoid wearing earplugs if I can help it, because they’re not exactly comfortable (which would add another issue to the situation), but I don’t know what else to do. Help! [Start Edit] I would still like suggestions, in case I have to deal with this kind of environment again. [/End Edit]

😐 tagAught

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