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  • Writer's pictureCory Morrison

2021 Review: How I Managed my Autism Traits

Updated: Sep 15, 2023

Table of Contents

2021 Was a Hard Year

2021 was a difficult year for me, mostly because of the COVID-19 restrictions and that my father was hospitalized for heart problems in September.

When it comes to my autism characteristics specifically, how did 2021 go? It was kind of a mixed bag for me but with many developments.

Social Skills

Given the COVID-19 restrictions, my opportunities to meet people have been somewhat limited. However, I've made some social mistakes which I've learned from, as well as maintained positive relationships with many people.

When COVID-19 restrictions eased in the summer, I started to interact with co-workers in groups during both working hours and lunch hours.

It's sometimes hard for me not to interrupt because I have a hard time picking up on cues when not to talk, but I've felt more comfortable talking in groups than I did five to 15 years ago.

Autism: Halloween 2021
Me and my dad at our 2021 Halloween party (Photo credit: Nancy Fincher-Morrison).

My parents also hosted a Halloween party where all guests were fully vaccinated. Most conversations were one-on-one as people mingled a lot, but I would say I interacted with others fairly well.

Special Interests

I've continued to pursue my interest in the weather, but it, thankfully, hasn't been as obsessive as it was over a decade or even a few years ago. It's only a strong hobby of mine now.

My primary thing is to track historical weather data in Southern Ontario.

birthday warm weather 2021
Me outside on my July 6 birthday during hot, sunny weather (Photo credit: John Morrison)

I've played piano a lot since not long after the COVID-19 pandemic started. The interest, however, is insignificant enough that I only play a few times a week.

Motor Coordination

Especially after I got a larger keyboard for my birthday, my hand coordination on the piano has increased considerably since the start of 2021.

I was hesitant to use some left-hand movements on the piano in 2020, which I have often used in 2021.

Here is me playing "Come Together" by the Beatles earlier in December, which I posted on Dec. 8 (The 41st anniversary of John Lennon's passing).

I still have an awkward walking gait sometimes, but it's manageable. It tends to be at its worse when I'm stepping in areas with little space or in crowds. When there is a lot of open space, such as a parking lot, it is more normal.

My biggest motor coordination gain of 2021 was easily driving for the first time. Going back to the beginning of 2021, I didn't think I'd ever drive properly or park in parking spaces correctly, but I've done just that.

Organizational Skills

Although I like to consider myself organized when it comes to handling things I'm interested in, when it comes to more tedious stuff, the organization has been more of an issue for me.

I actually lost my Visa card after I took my G1 test as it supposedly blew away in the wind when it was in my pocket (the first time in my memory something like this has happened to me). Since then, I've been more careful about always having a wallet with me.

Sensory Issues

I haven't had too many major sensory issues this year. However, I've been somewhat emetophobic.

I had a brief stomach bug in early 2020, just weeks before the pandemic started, and since then, I've been terrified of getting sick. It has often been to the point where I've had anxiety attacks and even dry heaved a few times.

I'll admit I am a heavy pop drinker, which can often contribute to acid reflux, but not every nausea episode has related to this.

I've thought of strategies to ease this situation, however, such as deep breaths and reminding myself I'm most likely not sick.


Overall, despite some issues that I've had little to no control over and that 2021 was not one of my better years, I've grown quite well as a person.


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